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Fashion Design and Making: Residential Summer School (14-16 Year Olds)

Fashion Design and Making: Residential Summer School (14-16 Year Olds)

London College of Fashion
Taught by
Claire Porter, Heidi Stokes


If you are considering a career in fashion design then this exciting fashion course will offer insight into how designers research, record and communicate their ideas.

You will start the week with a trip to a London museum or current exhibition, accompanied by LCF tutors who will guide you in creating your own sketchbook full of research and inspiration. Back in the classroom, you’ll use the collected research to begin creating your own designs on paper, you’ll then select your chosen design /detail and develop these onto mannequin stands to create sculptural outfits.

You’ll move on to look at fashion figures and how to create your own templates which you will then use to draw outfits inspired from the work on the stand.

For the second week you will be working with a purchased skirt pattern and be taught how to decipher the many markings and terminology as well as how to layout and prepare your fabric. You’ll also be shown how to use the sewing machines and what types of stitches to use to assemble your skirt. Finally you’ll also be introduced to a variety of embellishment techniques such as fabric manipulation, applique and beading, which you can then select to decorate your skirt. Please note this course is focused on womenswear design and making so all students will be making a skirt.

During the course you will be taken on a trip to London for a retail safari led by an LCF tutor. You’ll be taken to markets and vintage stores to experience the latest trends and styles on the streets of London.

Topics include:

  • Fashion drawing: learning to capture movement and gestures 
  • Drawing clothes from a stand onto templates: understanding drape and volume 
  • Mood boards: colour, theme and style 
  • Fashion illustration: developing your own drawing style 
  • Understanding a shop bought pattern: marking and laying 
  • Introduction to using a domestic sewing machine: what stitches to use with what fabric 
  • Investigating various embellishment techniques: fabric manipulation, applique, beading and hand stitching 
  • Customising your own garment 
  • Garment assembly: sewing, pressing and finishing techniques

Fashion Design and Making provisional schedule (76KB)

What are the benefits of attending a Residential Summer School at LCF?

This course will allow you to experiment with new techniques, build confidence, acquire new skills and be inspired to learn more. It's also a great way to meet like-minded friends from around the world. In addition, you'll leave the course with:

  • Sketchbook full of ideas and inspiration
  • Final mood board including figure templates
  • A selection of embellishment samples
  • Completed hand embellished garment

Download programme information handbook (77KB)

We also run the following residential summer course for 14 - 16 years olds at Harrow School:


Beginners. You should have an interest in fashion and a desire to learn but no previous experience is required.


Harrow School

Our residential courses are delivered at Harrow School. Harrow School was founded in 1572. Famous past pupils include former British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill, the poet Lord Byron, the first Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and King Hussein of Jordan. The school is considered amongst the most prestigious public schools in Britain, even the world. Summer school students are fully immersed in the Harrow experience, from staying in one of the famous boarding houses, to exploring the famous buildings where movies such as Harry Potter were filmed. The School boasts 300 acres of grounds which includes six conservation areas, a registered park, a nine-hole golf course and even a working farm. It is located just 15km north of central London in the beautiful village of Harrow on the Hill.

The course is delivered by London College of Fashion but all meals, accommodation and pastoral care are provided by Harrow School short courses


Airport and Eurostar transfers:
Transfers to and from Harrow School from certain airports and London St Pancras train station (Eurostar only) can be arranged, in line with the terms and conditions. Please read our Transfer terms and conditions before booking travel for your child. Download transfer terms and conditions (41KB) 


Your course place is confirmed once you have booked online or via the phone using a credit or debit card. There is no deadline for booking. Places are offered on a first come, first served basis, and all courses have a maximum number of students. We suggest you book early to avoid disappointment.

Male and female students will stay in separate dormitories’. Recreational activities outside of the course structure will also be separate at times.

Tutor Description

Claire Porter undertook a Theatre Studies and Costume Interpretation course at London College of Fashion before beginning her career as a costume assistant at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. During this time she was a costumer assistant in men's soft tailoring department creating costumes for The Royal Opera and The Royal Ballet. Since 1998 Claire has been a freelance Costumier for men's and women's period and contemporary costumes for theatre, films and television. Her clients have included: The Royal Opera House, English National Opera, The Royal Ballet, English National Ballet, English Touring Opera, Opera Kent, English Chamber Opera, Garsington Opera, BBC, Thames Television, Shakespeare’s Globe, Comic Strip Productions, Hat Trick Productions, The Art of Being (Couture) Bill Kenwright Ltd, Clonter Opera Theatre, Royal Academy of Music, UK Foundation for Dance, Lyric Opera of Chicago, E15 Acting School, The Green and Lewisham Community Theatre Trust, The Wrestling School and Emergency Exit Arts. Claire teaches fashion realisation, garment production and corsetry on a number of London College of Fashion Short Courses and Study Abroad programmes.

Heidi Stokes has taught at London College of Fashion for 15 year and is Practitioner in Residence for the International Preparation for Fashion (Certificate in Higher Education) course and part time BA flexible learning programme. Part of her new role has been being taken on as an artist to broaden creative thinking and help spark creative minds to think outside the box. Since completing an MA in Fine Art Heidi has exhibited at numerous events and exhibitions including Anima Call 2011 at the Contemporary Art Centre in Athens, Cologne OFF VII International Video Art Film Festival and has screened at the Rich Mix cinema in Bethnal Green.


In order to fully participate in the practical exercises please bring the following materials/equipment to the first class:

  • Notepad and pen
  • A camera/phone with camera (to take photos of work)

A full sewing kit is provided on the first day and is included in the course fee. This includes:

  • fabric shears
  • small sharp pointed scissors
  • stitch ripper
  • fine steel pins

Available dates