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Undergraduate

BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring

Close up shot of moulded shapes in a variety of pastel colours
BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Hanqi Hu | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
College
London College of Fashion
UCAS code
W230
Start date
September 2023
Course length
3 years

As tailors you have the power to re-imagine the body through cut & fit by re-engineering the silhouette. BA Bespoke Tailoring, the only course of its kind in Europe, is the catalyst for a unique creative conversation with the client. It’s a process that challenges our global community of students to become disruptive traditionalists who respect craftmanship by redefining its future.

Course undergoing re-approval

Please note this course is undergoing re-approval. This is the process by which we ensure the course continues to provide a high quality academic experience. During re-approval there may be some changes to the course content displayed on this page. Please contact us if you have any questions about the course.

Why choose this course at London College of Fashion

    • Client Focused: Working directly with individual clients offers the chance to co-create wholly bespoke pieces, where unique identities are mirrored through material, design and process.
    • Technical Excellence & Design Innovation: We deliver excellence in hand-construction techniques partnered with the exploration of contemporary design. We embrace future technologies and innovation to create sustainably crafted products that challenge the boundaries of bespoke tailoring that will impact generations to come.
    • Industry Links: Graduates have gained employment at prestigious international brands including Celine, Paul Smith and Huntsman. Whilst attracting a global audience we also have strong links with Savile Row in terms of input, staff and student placements. Sponsored projects offered have included those with international innovators of luxury fabrics such as Scabal and Harris Tweed.
    • Culturally Diverse: This course takes an inclusive approach which broadens the understanding of craftsmanship and artisanal practices. We value cultural differences that enrich our learning and teaching environment, enabling us to celebrate each other’s uniqueness within our community.
    • Sustainability: Develop your practice within an authentic sustainable narrative, combining best practice with novel approaches to heritage, craft and handwork. Through the re-purposing of materials and design for longevity, you will help to build new visions for bespoke tailoring.
    • Staff Expertise: This is an opportunity to learn from staff who have experience working for a diverse range of luxury global brands. They nurture prospective tailors by offering creative design development, academic thinking and the necessary professional practice and expertise required for a career in a world-class bespoke tailoring setting, global ready-to-wear brand, or independent label.

Open days

The next open day for this course is taking place on Thursday 8 December. Book your place.

Course overview

Introduction 

BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring focuses on equipping you with the technical craft knowledge, processes and skills to tailor bespoke garments. In addition to being the only undergraduate course in Europe where you are taught traditional full-bespoke hand craft tailoring and pattern-drafting skills, you will also explore bespoke techniques through creative applications and professional client briefs. Students will be prepared to use digital technologies to define future artisanal practices in Bespoke Tailoring for the 21st century.  

What to expect 

  • Access to modern, industry-standard work rooms and technical resources.  

  • Trouser and jacket step by step bespoke workshops taught by industry experts using traditional hand techniques and processes.     

  • Workshops on how to understand and define clients. 

  • Introduction and development of digital pattern cutting and 3D rendering processes along with production tailoring techniques and Adobe creative suite programs Illustrator, Indesign and Photoshop. 

  • Application of tailoring techniques in creative 2D and 3D ways in design development workshops to define your understanding of bespoke tailoring. 

  • Develop a bespoke collection in Year 3 based on a client and theme of your choosing.  

Work experience and opportunities 

Students are given great exposure to industry, including masterclasses from tailors and industry practitioners. Students can undertake a placement during the second year of the course with established and emerging companies. This valuable industry experience enhances the employability of students. Previous placements have included H Huntsman & Sons in both Savile Row and New York, Burberry, Alexander McQueen, Reiss, Thom Sweeny, Henry Pool, Norton & Sons, E Tautz, and Holly Robbins Bespoke. The course has strong links with Savile Row, which students will be able to access through live briefs with different tailoring houses. 

Mode of study 

BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring runs for 90 weeks in full time mode. It is divided into 3 stages over 3 academic years. Each stage lasts 30 weeks. 

Course units

In Stage 1 you are required to complete 120 credits at level 4 in order to progress to Stage 2.

  • Introduction to Bespoke Tailoring (20 credits)
  • Tailoring Techniques (20 credits)
  • Research, Design and Tailoring (20 credits)
  • Fashion Cultures and Histories(20 credits)
  • Cutting and Fitting (20 credits)
  • Better Lives (20 credits)

In Stage 2 you are required to complete 120 credits of which a minimum of 100 must be at level 5.

  • Critical Issues in Fashion Research (20 credits)
  • Future Artisans (40 credits)
  • Industry Project (40 credits)
  • Industry Experience (20 credits)

In Stage 3 you are required to complete 120 credits at level 6. 

  • Concept Development (40 credits)
  • Contextualising Your Practice (20 credits)
  • Major Project Realisation (60 credits)

A 20-credit unit is approximately equivalent to 200 hours of learning time, which includes a mixture of taught time, independent study and assessment.

All students are entitled to a tutorial package that consists of:

  • one induction tutorial (group or one to one);
  • one tutorial per term for the duration for their course of study at LCF;
  • group tutorials as required;
  • an appropriate level of confidentiality.

Learning and teaching methods

The following learning and teaching methods are employed to support the integrated achievement of the course outcomes:

 

  • Lectures. 
  • Seminars. 
  • Group and individual tutorials. 
  • Critiques. 
  • Individual and live projects. 
  • Peer group presentations. 
  • Studio based workshops. 
  • Open access work. 
  • Visiting speakers. 
  • Field trips.
  • Demonstrations. 
  • Self‐directed study. 
  • Reflection and self‐evaluation.

Student and graduate work

  • BA-Bespoke-Tailoring-Daniel-Radke-sketch.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Daniel Radke | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • BA-Bespoke-Tailoring-by-Finlay-Price-Milne.png
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Finlay Price-Milne | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Fitting-Photo-by-Alex-Hall.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Alex Hall | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Hanqi-Hu-2.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Hanqi Hu | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Hanqi-Hu.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Hanqi Hu | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Hayley-Hayhurst.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Hayley Hayhurst | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Kate-Bautista.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Kate Bautista | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Lucas-Fothergill.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Lucas Fothergill | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Min-Liang.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Min Liang | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London
  • Sophie-Dodds.jpg
    BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | Sophie Dodds | London College of Fashion | University of Arts London

BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring

Graduate work from the LCF summer series 2021

Weaving the Future: Tailors of tomorrow - Emily Latham

Weaving the Future: Tailors of tomorrow - James Eardley

Latest news from this course

LCF facilities

  • Library, John Princes Street
    Library, John Princes Street Photography by: Ideal Insight
    LCF library and archives

    Take a tour of LCF's world renowned fashion library, ideal for research and study.

  • Mfundo Mahlangu from BA Cordwainers Footwear- Product Design and Innovation; Photographer Alys Tomlinson
    Mfundo Mahlangu from BA Cordwainers Footwear- Product Design and Innovation; Photographer Alys Tomlinson
    Design, pattern cutting and tailoring facilities

    Discover our design studios and workshops across JPS, Mare street, Curtain Road and Lime Grove.

  • Canteen, Mare Street
    Canteen, Mare Street Photography by: Ideal Insight
    LCF's social spaces

    Explore our social spaces, for collaborative study and breaks, across our six sites in London.

Staff

Daniel Poulson

Daniel Poulson is Course Leader; he works across all year groups and is passionate about supporting each individual students creative journey and equipping them to develop their unique Bespoke Tailoring narrative. He works proactively to connect his students to industry through specifically designed industry projects, competitions and placement opportunities. He is a talented womenswear designer and tailor. Having trained at Kingston University, Daniel went on to design for the Max Mara Group before launching his own brand, 'Daniel Blake' which he presented over ten seasons at London Fashion Week. Renowned for his impeccable cutting in luxurious fabrication, Daniel's innovative British made tailoring was uniquely and locally crafted at his South London Atelier. Daniel presented bi-annual collections internationally which were 'Made to Order'. He also has extensive experience consulting for several international fashion businesses & charities, advising on branding, enterprise & product direction.

Alex Hall

Alex Hall is an Associate Lecturer for Bespoke Tailoring and is an Alumni of the BA Bespoke Tailoring Course at the London College of Fashion, class of 2017. He has previously worked with Christopher Raeburn & Lumen ET Umbra in Rome. He is now employed as a cutter at Timothy Everest and is involved in their creative development. Alex is passionate about the arts and has an innate overview of historical and cultural influences which impact the way we see the world around us. He is keen about passing on his knowledge and experience to the next generation of Bespoke creatives, equipping them with the tools to research and develop their creative processes.

Magdelena Handwerker

Magdelena Handwerker is the sample room tutor and teaches bespoke tailoring on this course. She graduated from London College of Fashion with a diploma in Pattern Technology and degree in BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring. She has worked in the bespoke tailoring industry as a pattern cutter for several years, and she has worked with individual clients while creating bespoke garments to their individual specification. She is a determined craft practitioner who believes that in the age of the impersonal approach to the customer and clothing production, it is extremely important to have the ability to create a high quality garment made with passion, care and impeccable attention to detail of a craftsman along with contemporary and creative thinking.

Fees and funding

Home fee

£9,250 per year

This fee is correct for 2023/24 entry and is subject to change for 2024/25 entry.

Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students.

Home fees are currently charged to UK nationals and UK residents who meet the rules. However, the rules are complex. Find out more about our tuition fees and determining your fee status.

International fee

£25,970 per year

This fee is correct for 2023/24 entry and is subject to change for 2024/25 entry.

Tuition fees for international students may increase by up to 5% in each future year of your course.

Students from countries outside of the UK will generally be charged international fees. The rules are complex so read more about tuition fees and determining your fee status.

Scholarship search

Entry requirements

The standard minimum entry requirements for this course are:

One or a combination of the following accepted full level 3 qualifications.

  • 112 UCAS tariff points from two or more A Levels (preferred subjects include English, Maths, Art, Design, Textiles and Science);

  • Distinction at Foundation Diploma in Art and Design;

  • Distinction, Merit, Merit at BTEC Extended Diploma (preferred subjects Art & Design);

  • Merit at UAL Extended Diploma;

  • Access Diploma or 112 new UCAS tariff points from the Access to HE Diploma;

  • 112 new UCAS tariff points from a combination of the above qualifications or an equivalent full Level 3 qualification;

  • or equivalent EU or non-EU qualifications such as International Baccalaureate Diploma at 25 points minimum;
  • and three GCSE passes at grade A*-C or grade 9-4.

Entry to this course will also be determined by assessment of your portfolio.

APEL (Accreditation of Prior (Experiential) Learning)

Applicants who do not meet these course entry requirements may still be considered in exceptional cases. The course team will consider each application that demonstrates additional strengths and alternative evidence. This might, for example, be demonstrated by:

  • Related academic or work experience
  • The quality of the personal statement
  • A strong academic or other professional reference
  • OR a combination of these factors

Each application will be considered on its own merit but we cannot guarantee an offer in each case.

English Language Requirements

IELTS level 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in reading, writing, listening and speaking. Please check our main English Language Requirements .

Selection criteria

The course team seeks to recruit students who can demonstrate:

  • Evidence of creative, cultural and tailoring interests
  • A potential to achieve a high standard of technical/fine tailoring
  • An ability to think three-dimensionally
  • An enquiring and analytical approach
  • An ability to communicate visually, verbally and through the written word
  • The ability to work independently and as a member of a team

Apply now

This section includes all the information you need on how to apply, how your application is considered and what happens next.

You should apply through UCAS and you will need the following information:

University code:          U65

UCAS Code:                 W230

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

Transfers

If you are currently studying somewhere else on a course in an equivalent subject area and would like to transfer to this course, you can transfer to:

  • Year 2 - if you’ve completed 120 credits in Year 1.
  • Year 3 - if you’ve completely 240 credits in Years 1 and 2.

Apply via UCAS and choose Year 2 or 3 for your POE (Point of Entry)

Please check our Student Transfer Policy for more important information and be ready to provide us with your current course handbook and Year 1/Year 2 unit transcripts.

Please be ready to provide an official document (translated into English) from your current university, explaining the learning outcomes of the units you have completed.

Application deadline

We recommend you apply by 18:00 PM (GMT) on  25 January 2023 for equal consideration. However this course will consider applications after that date, subject to places being available.

You can only apply to the same course once per year. Any duplicate applications will be withdrawn. Applications for this course can only be accepted for this year of entry.

What happens next

All application forms, personal statements and references are read and considered by the course team against the selection criteria listed in the Entry requirements and Selection Criteria sections.

If you have achieved or expect to achieve the standard entry requirements we will invite you to submit a portfolio via PebblePad, our online submission tool, which should include a number of images of your work. You can upload a maximum of 30 images which best shows your work – please note however that you do not have to provide this exact number. PebblePad refers to ‘images’ when you upload your work - think of each 'image' as a page in your physical portfolio.

For this course your portfolio should show evidence of: drawing/presentation skills; contemporary fashion/cultural awareness; a level of research, exploration and experimentation; fabric and material selection/knowledge; construction/technical competence; an enquiring approach/problem solving; and visual communication skills.

The portfolio is assessed by Academic Reviewers who will decide if they are able to make an offer based on the work you have demonstrated. It may be, however, that the tutor wishes to speak with you further about your work and so you will be invited to attend an online interview. At the interview the Academic Reviewer will discuss your portfolio that you submitted in PebblePad; it will be possible to show more of your work during the interview if the tutor feels it necessary for you to do so.

Please note that not all applicants will be invited to attend interview.

If you are made an offer, you will have the opportunity to engage with course teams at a number of planned engagement activities, where you will be able to ask any questions you may have and also speak to current students studying on the course.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

If you applied through UCAS the result of your application will be communicated to you via UCAS through UCAS Track. You will only receive further communication directly from the College if your application has been successful. This will be in the form of a full offer pack including details of accommodation, fees, and other important information.

This section includes all the information you need on how to apply, how your application is considered and what happens next.

There are 2 ways international students can apply to an undergraduate course:

You must apply through UCAS, where you will need the following information:

  • University code – U65
  • UCAS course code – W230

Read our immigration and visa information to find out if you need a visa to study at UAL.

You can only apply to the same course once per year. Any duplicate applications will be withdrawn. Applications for this course can only be accepted for this year of entry. Applications for deferred entry cannot be accepted. Read the UAL international application advice for further information on how to apply.

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

Transfers

If you are currently studying somewhere else on a course in an equivalent subject area and would like to transfer to this course, you can transfer to:

  • Year 2 - if you’ve completed 120 credits in Year 1.
  • Year 3 - if you’ve completely 240 credits in Years 1 and 2.

Apply via UCAS and choose Year 2 or 3 for your POE (Point of Entry)

Please check our Student Transfer Policy for more important information and be ready to provide us with your current course handbook and Year 1/Year 2 unit transcripts.

If you are an International applicant and studying outside the UK, please complete your Direct application and then contact us via your UAL Portal to ask to be considered for Year 2/Year 3.

Please be ready to provide an official document (translated into English) from your current university, explaining the learning outcomes of the units you have completed.

Application deadline

We recommend you apply by 18:00 PM (GMT) on  25 January 2023 for equal consideration. However this course will consider applications after that date, subject to places being available.

What happens next

Immigration History Check

Whether you are applying online via UCAS or through a UAL representative you will need to complete an Immigration History Check to identify whether you are eligible to study at UAL. Do be aware, if you do not complete the Immigration History Check we will not be able to proceed with your application.

Initial application check

All application forms, personal statements and references are read and considered by the course team against the selection criteria listed in the Entry requirements and Selection Criteria sections.

Depending on the quality of your application, you may be asked to submit a number of images of your work. For this course your portfolio should show evidence of: drawing/presentation skills; contemporary fashion/cultural awareness; a level of research, exploration and experimentation; fabric and material selection/knowledge; construction/technical competence; an enquiring approach/problem solving; and visual communication skills.

If the academic team wish to consider your application further, you will be invited to attend an interview - these will take place online using Teams from Microsoft – please ensure that you download this software prior to the interview date; this is available as a free download from the Microsoft website. We will send you further details at a later point about how we will connect with you for your interview. At interview an international academic will look at your portfolio and ask questions to establish your suitability for the course. Applicants will be expected to demonstrate the following at interview: an understanding of the performing arts; creative, cultural and tailoring interests; the potential to achieve a high standard of technical/fine tailoring; the ability to work independently and as a member of a team; an enquiring and analytical approach; and an ability to communicate visually, verbally and through the written word.

If you are successful at the interview stage you will be offered a place. Applicants are not guaranteed to be asked to upload work, nor are they guaranteed an interview.

Please note that if you are unable to attend, the College may not be able to re-schedule.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

If you applied through UCAS the result of your application will be communicated to you via UCAS through UCAS Track. If you have applied directly or through an agent, we will notify you through the UAL portal. You will only receive further communication directly from the College if your application has been successful. This will be in the form of a full offer pack including details of accommodation, fees, and other important information.

After you apply

After you’ve submitted your application, you’ll receive a confirmation email providing you with your login details for the UAL Portal. We’ll use this Portal to contact you to request any additional information, including inviting you to upload documents or book an interview, so please check it regularly.

Once we’ve reviewed and assessed your application, we’ll contact you via UCAS Track or the UAL Portal to let you know whether your application has been successful.

Potential changes to course structure

Please note: the information outlined is an indicative structure of the course. Whilst we will aim to deliver the course as described on this page, there may be situations where it is desirable or necessary for the University to make changes in course provision, for example because of regulatory requirements or operational efficiencies, before or after enrolment. If this occurs, we will communicate all major changes to all applicants and students who have either applied or enrolled on the course. Please note that due to staff research agreements or availability, not all of the optional modules listed may be available every year. In addition, the provision of course options which depend upon the availability of specialist teaching, or on a placement at another institution, cannot be guaranteed. Please check this element of the course with the course team before making a decision to apply.

Webpage updates

We will update this webpage from time to time with new information as it becomes available. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please use the register your interest form above.

Careers

All of our undergraduate courses offer career development, so that you become a creative thinker, making effective contributions to your relevant sector of the fashion industry.

LCF offers students the opportunity to develop Personal and Professional Development (PPD) skills while studying through:

  • An on-course work experience or placement year. Please note, this is not available on every course; please see the Course Details section for information about work placement opportunities.
  • Access to to speaker programmes and events featuring alumni and industry.
  • Access to careers activities, such as CV clinics and one-to-one advice sessions.
  • Access to a graduate careers service
  • Access to a live jobsboard for all years.
  • Advice on setting up your own brand or company.

Graduates who wish to continue their education at postgraduate level can progress to suitable courses within the College, the University or elsewhere.

Career paths

Many graduates prefer to seek employment as soon as they have completed their undergraduate studies. Recent graduates from this course have successfully gained employment with a number of bespoke tailors, including H Huntsman & Sons, Timothy Everest, John Pearse, Norton & Sons and Henry Poole & Co, with fashion companies Burberry and Aquascutum, and with the film, television and theatrical costumier, Angels.

Alumni