Introduction to Womenswear aims to introduce you to your course and its subject specialism as well as to effective learning and studentship at undergraduate level. It will orientate you to the practices and knowledge-base needed to understand your discipline, through concept development and research methods. You will develop skills for independent study, reflection and your own self development. This Unit has three core purposes: to introduce you to your discipline in the context of study at a Higher Education level. to introduce you to learning skills and the requirements of effective studentship at undergraduate level to orientate you within your course, the College and the University Emphasis is placed on the skills needed to locate, navigate and communicate information and ideas effectively and appropriately. You will be introduced to resources that support your studies. We will also discuss studentship, the importance of being an engaged and participatory member of the group and your own personal and professional development.
The Design and Realisation unit focuses on the importance of how research and creative concepts and its development are the basis for design ideas. This unit introduces you to a variety of approaches to research and their relevance and application to the design process and the realisation of ideas. The overall focus of this unit is on the importance of research and how it informs the design process and the 3D development of ideas. Visual communication and an exploration of techniques will be encouraged in this unit. You will be introduced to ways of recording your work in a stimulating, exciting and informative way, using a variety of communication methods and media. You will be asked to develop creative ideas that relate to and expand upon your visual references that will inform the final outcome. You will be introduced to core practical 3D skills through demonstration of basic pattern-cutting and manufacturing techniques. An induction to the Materials Library will help you to begin the process of fabric sourcing and identification. You will be encouraged to use resources in order to develop creative samples, which will further establish the link between your 2D thinking and the 3D progression of design.
Introduction to Cultural and Historical Studies introduces the Cultural and Historical Studies approach to fashion and related areas. The unit provides a broad overview of the subject and introduces key concepts and ways of thinking that will form the basis of subsequent study. It will also inform decisions regarding the Cultural and Historical Studies unit that is chosen for future study.
Transformative Futures aims to encourage a transformational approach to your practice and the wider fashion industry. The emphasis of the unit is on creative teamwork and your individual contribution to a collective output. Through teamwork you will explore materials, techniques and outcomes that challenge current practice in the fashion industry. You will work with diverse fabric types and investigate the differences, experience and experiment with the innate characteristics, handle and uses of these fabrics between structured and unstructured garments through a range of pattern cutting approaches. The emphasis will be on the creative application of materials and specialist techniques within a sustainable context to propose and realise new design ideas. This analysis will inform manufacturing techniques and finishes that will further explore the translation of ideas within the 2D and 3D design process. You will use IT programmes for the professional presentation and communication of both design and technical work.
London College of Fashion, UAL (LCF) is a leader in fashion design, media and business education. We have been nurturing creative talent for over a century, offering courses in all things fashion. We encourage students to examine the past and challenge the present. To have inventive, assertive ideas that challenge social and political agendas. We give students the skills, opportunities – and above all, the freedom – to put those ideas into practice. By leading the way in fashion design, business, and the media, we influence culture, economics and our society. This unit will provide you with a solid understanding of LCF’ core values and how they connect to your practice. As part of this unit you will explore diversity, social responsibility and sustainability, themes which you will then apply to a selected project. At this stage the emphasis is on how you apply your thinking across these important themes to your practice. Your thinking is more important than a finished piece of work at this point. Fashion can change lives. Through teaching, specialist research, and collaborative work, this unit will get you thinking differently. We want you to use fashion to examine the past, build a sustainable future and improve the way we live. That’s why we call this unit ‘Better Lives’.
You will be able to study a Cultural and Historical Studies unit of your choice that will broaden or deepen your learning of areas relating to your interests in your chosen field. You will have the opportunity to participate in lectures, seminars and workshops with students from other courses within your School, and will read relevant academic texts and complete a formal academic essay for assessment. Further information on the options available will be provided during Year 1 of your studies.
In the Professional Product Development unit you will be asked to design and realise garments for a client (specific or simulated). You will conduct research to fully understand the client profile and make appropriate decisions about size and fit. You will be asked to explore the principles and techniques of tailoring and outerwear garments and apply them creatively to a contemporary range of garments. You will expand on your skills of research, design development, fabric sourcing, pattern cutting and manufacture. You are also asked to present work in a professional way that is appropriate for your client.
The Work Experience unit will provide you with the opportunity to further develop your skills and apply them in a professional environment. You will experience real industry challenges and working practice and will be able to examine the way in which a professional team respond to different situations. The unit will increase your awareness of the industry and the opportunities for career progression. You will be expected to take an analytical and reflective approach to the work experience and will produce written and visual evidence of your knowledge, based on a minimum 10-week period in industry. LCF Careers will provide career guidance in order to prepare you for your work experience. You will be expected to engage and be proactive in securing your own work experience, relevant to your skills and career aspirations, this means applying directly to companies. You will also be expected to provide feedback on your experience both during and after your work placement. The College Placement Handbook will provide additional support for this Unit.
The Aesthetics and Identity unit aims to refine and consolidate techniques, methods and processes that have been learnt and encourages you to explore your personal aesthetic and how you may consider your place as a designer within the fashion industry. Through reflection and development, you will be evidencing your design identity and will investigate and produce a body of work that shows directional consideration of consumer, market and product. You will be required to investigate a personal response to the brief that will culminate in a range of products showing a deep understanding of research, analysis, design development, experimentation, manufacture and range planning. You will be required to develop your own unique style of communication using creative and technical drawing, as well as using IT packages for professional presentation. Your engagement with research methods and the development of a personal design philosophy will provide the foundation for your final year design proposal.
To begin you will do the Contextualising Your Practice unit which allows you to build on your historical and theoretical understanding of fashion through a research-led extended essay. You will identify a topic, related to your field of practice, that you will investigate through design-led research methods and significant cultural and critical theories. It is an opportunity for you to undertake a substantial piece of structured research that examines fashion practice in context and it will build on the critical debates and concerns raised through your course.
The Pre-Collection unit will inform and prepare you for the Main Collection. You will be expected to negotiate a project brief that will support the development of a thorough body of work that evidences investigation and innovation in both design and realisation. You will identify your proposed market level, customer, brand ethos and core philosophy as a designer and undertake a practical journey culminating in a body of work that shows innovative design and technical experimentation with fabric, process and potential garment solutions. You will be expected to engage in prototype testing that will be evidenced through 2D and 3D investigation and sampling, within both your design and technical portfolios. The focus on this project is using your skills to show extensive creative experimentation, whilst considering the practical aspects of problem-solving, through fabric and trims sourcing. Extensive investigation into appropriate use of finish, detailing and manufacture will be documented alongside silhouette/shape development. The completed outfits will form the basis of your collection for your Main Collection.
The Main Collection unit is the culmination of your undergraduate learning experience. Through the development of a final major project you will be further demonstrating your innovative approach and deeper engagement, analysis and conclusions drawn from your Pre-Collection unit. You should refine and execute your design, design development and realisations established in through a process of design synthesis. Through practical application you will be demonstrating your rigorous analysis in the exploration and development of your design ideas. This unit provides the opportunity to apply the findings established through your investigation of the challenges of your chosen brief. It evidences your ability to construct, direct and organise an overall professional outcome. This Main Collection is the vehicle by which you evaluate and reflect upon your own learning and skills in order to establish a potential career path. You will accompany your work with a career pack that will enable you to take up roles or pursue business objectives as soon as you graduate from London College of Fashion.
Showing your work
All students are advised to set up a profile on portfolio.arts.ac.uk, UAL’s new portfolio platform, which can be done at any point during your time at LCF and will last for up to 12 months after graduation. This platform is often used to source student work for promotional use on the website, social media and for print and can be a great way of getting your work seen. You may also be asked to have a portfolio profile for the selection process when it comes to degree shows.