BA Textile Design has three specialist pathways - Knit, Print and Weave. Regardless of pathway, learning is student-centred with a focus on development of the individual. There's no set formula for success. You're expected to take responsibility for your own ideas and to become increasingly independent in your learning as you progress.
Main study - Stage One
Stage One introduces you to the three principal areas of print, weave and knit, and to areas of visual research.
In these first three terms you'll progress from introductory design workshops to a series of structured projects developing your research, drawing, colour, design and technical skills in two or three of the textile specialisms. You'll also explore digital and non-traditional approaches to design, structure and surface.
Main study - Stage Two
During this stage you'll do further research and begin to develop ideas into textiles and textile products. Your substantial research helps you to apply all the knowledge and skills you gained in the first year and to meet the challenges of turning your ideas into finite textiles or textile products.
Spring term marks the point where you begin to focus your studies on Knit, Print or Weave. The three specialisms have distinctive requirements and characteristics in terms of their subject knowledge. Aims and learning outcomes, however, are shared - they involve extending your professional and contextual knowledge of textile design for fashion, accessories, interior, exterior and product applications while continuing to develop your design experience and identity. You'll also continue to explore digital technologies and non-traditional approaches to design for structure and surface.
During this stage you'll be introduced to professional working practices in areas such as market research, range building and promotional presentation. And you'll continue to carry your own expertise and knowledge towards more independent judgment.
Main study - Stage Three
Your final year allows you to target strengths and weakness before embarking on your final degree project. You'll start developing your personal interests, focusing on designing textiles and surfaces for fashion, accessories, interior, exterior or product contexts.
The degree course's project-based structure is replaced increasingly by a more self-directed progress towards the realisation of your major project. With the support and guidance of academic and technical staff you'll develop your portfolio and collection towards the degree examination and public show.
The cultural studies programme is designed to enhance your communication, research, critical and writing skills. The discipline involves the study of cultural and creative processes, but goes beyond history and theory of art and design to encompass various aspects of cultural knowledge. In stage one and two you attend lectures and seminars on units relating to the city and creative culture, you explore key cultural concepts and choose from a range of elective choices such as art and fashion, postcolonialism, visual cultures, the body and sexuality. In the final stage of your degree you undertake dissertation research under the supervision of an assigned tutor who supports your research on a subject of your choice. It may be weighted at 20 or 40 credits. The dissertation is a written project where you explore an aspect of visual, textual material or spatial culture. There are many areas to explore in the cultural studies programme such as art, design, technology, concepts of taste, material culture, multiculturalism, identity politics, gender, consumerism, ethics, sustainability and media studies.
Personal and Professional Development (PPD) helps to prepare you for employment and career development by providing you with skills to enable you to take responsibility for your own learning. The core study of Textile Design also helps develop many of these transferable skills, which play their part in equipping you for a professional career and the generic activities of creative practice.
PPD is integral to BA Textile Design and is embedded in many aspects of both the studio and cultural studies programmes as a planned part of their structure and learning content. PPD activities take place in all Stages of the degree course and aim to improve your capacity to understand what and how you are learning and to help you to review, plan and take responsibility for your own learning. A considerable number of the skills learned in the academic context of BA Textile Design have a wider value and use in other areas of life. These transferable skills are highly valued by employers.
Developing your skills - external activities
BA Textile Design maintains active collaborations with key cultural institutions, venues and commercial enterprises to introduce you to London's networks of creative practice.
Current collaborations include work with Gainsborough Silk Weaving Co Ltd, WGSN, Worshipful Company of Weavers, Ballantines, Gianfranco Ferré, Vanners. Polartec, Timothy Everest, Pure, Muraspec, Stoll, Anthropologie, Next and The Wellcome Trust.