The Graduate Diploma in Fashion is one of a number of related courses in the Fashion programme.
During their studies students are guided by some of the most eminent and experienced current practitioners in the field of fashion enabling them to benefit from the teaching and learning methods which have produced some of the world's leading fashion design professionals.
The Graduate Diploma in Fashion has been created to produce mature and sophisticated designers equipped to work in and design for the international market. You will leave the course with a portfolio and realised design work that will effectively support entry into employment in the fashion industry and access to postgraduate study.
Graduates of the course progress to postgraduate study on a wide range of well established courses in London, the UK and elsewhere in Europe including: Central Saint Martins' MA Fashion (Womenswear and Menswear) and MA Textiles Futures courses; MA Fashion at the Royal College of Art; MA Fashion at Arnhem; MA Fashion Design and Technology (Womenswear and Menswear), MA Digital Fashion, MA Fashion Marketing and MA Footwear Design (all at London College of Fashion); MA Design and Environment at Goldsmiths and MA Fashion at Westminster University, or go on to establish design careers in London, the UK and Europe as well as their home countries.
Adam Andrascik, USA: MA Womenswear CSM
Looking back on my time on the Graduate Diploma in Fashion course, of all the things I gained, I feel that the most important was a sense of self-confidence in my work. Through various self-guided projects, I became more comfortable with making decisions about the direction I wanted my work to progress, along with identifying any faults along the way. It also helped me to look at the way I design in a more objective sense, where my aesthetic fit in amongst other labels, and how I could differentiate myself in that landscape.
For me, the course was not only about gaining self-confidence, but a better understanding of fashion on an international scale. Along with various projects, I had the opportunity to acclimatize myself to London through work experience with such labels Richard Nicoll and Jonathan Saunders, along with taking part in both London and Paris fashion week. I was also encouraged to integrate myself into the fashion and design culture of London, in an effort to open myself up to the idea that inspiration doesn’t always need to come from an obscure art book or magazine. Needless to say, most of the friends I have today I met within the first few months of that experience.
At the end of the course, I felt I had the right tools needed to create and construct a professional collection, which was new and directional, along with the confidence to build a personal design aesthetic. Soon afterwards, I was accepted on to MA Womenswear at Central St. Martins, graduated and debuted my collection during LFW 2010, and have since completed my first solo presentation for Spring Summer 2011. I’ve been featured in Dazed Digital, POP Magazine, Style.com, Fashion 156, and an upcoming book shot by Rankin.
Sol Ahn, China: MA Menswear RCA
Personally, I think Graduate Diploma was the perfect course for me to take a quick peek at what London’s (and of course, one of the world’s) most famous fashion school is like. More specifically, it helped me to grasp better ideas of London fashion, like an A to Z guidebook of London fashion. I could learn where to buy fabrics from, how to revamp my portfolio, and the first project (the London Project) even taught me where to hang out to see all the fashionable people. Moreover, it was just such a great place to get to know people from all the different continents around the world. Even just by being in the school, I could see the most fashionable people passing by in the hallways. I was really surprised to realise how fabulous they look but also how hard all of them were working. Saint Martin’s whole ambiance was very creative, the energy from people was amazing, but obviously, it was a really tough course and the amount of work was demanding. It was almost like an intensive boot camp to completely reshape me to be a better fashion designer. The course surely pushed me really hard
Plus, for me, it helped me deciding my future plans, so that I am doing my MA now. Overall, I am really satisfied that I did the course, that I did actually recommended it to the people I know who are actually thinking about doing their MA (or further studies) in London, but don’t know where to start.
Katya Ford, Russia: MA Menswear CSM
I was happy to take the Graduate Diploma course last year. It gave me a great experience and a great opportunity to apply for an MA course this year. In spite of the fact that the course seems to be quite a long one, as it lasts the whole year, it is still a very hard one. We had many projects going one by one and sometimes we had to do two projects at the same time which was quite tough but this type of working process prepares you for the work in fashion industry or for the study on MA. I am so grateful for my tutors David Kappo and Tristan Webber who helped me during the course and I am happy to know them. A good thing about the course was to have different artists and designers coming to work with us. For example, we had Katie Eary for our London project and Richard Gray for our Muse project and that it was a pleasure to work with them!
Yulia Kondranina, Russia: MA Womenswear CSM
I had a great experience since my arrival at Central Saint Martins. I enjoyed my time at this course and have met a lot of interesting people.
I have also benefitted hugely from this course which helped me to open my mind and understand the fashion industry better from the inside. The various tasks and projects I have done have taught me varied ways of designing garments, sourcing inspiration and ideas, and consequently I now feel that I can design a collection confidently and be able to work independently.
Yejon Park, Korea: MA Menswear RCA
I finished a BA course in Korea, and worked as a womenswear designer. Through this course I learned a great deal about how to manage my time according to the schedule that MA courses go through, and the importance of expressing my illustration ideas through to realisation as actual garments.
I feel that it was a very important diagnostic phase to prepare myself for further development in finding out what my strengths and weaknesses are. My tutor was very passionate in helping me realise what to do to enhance my abilities in the most productive way, and I was able to see a clearer way forward after each tutorial.
MA studies are tough, and I think I would have had trouble adjusting without what I've learned in Graduate Diploma. I am relieved I took the course.
Megha Garg, India
I have launched my own label and have been selected to showcase my collection in Lakme Fashion Week (one of the biggest fashion weeks in India).
The collection that I had sent to be selected for was my final collection at CSM. This collection was developed under the guidance and supervision of the course tutors, who I learnt a lot from and owe my success to as their time and patience with me helped me grow as a designer.