Fashion Design Hero

FashionDesign

I'm ready to make a name for myself.

In your case, clothes don’t just cover you. They define you. They tell the world who you are and express your unique sense of style. That’s something you share with the creative professionals who take fashion from concept to consumer. If you also share their talent and tenacity, you may be able to join them. Our Fashion Design degree programs can help you start a career in an industry of global influences, trends, and markets. We’ll help you build skills in traditional and computer-generated design and pattern-making as you begin to shape your future. It’s a hands-on education designed to help you work through design challenges drawn from the real world.

If you’re more into the hats, shoes, jewelry, handbags and belts that complete the outfit, consider our Associate's Degree in Apparel and Accessory Design. You’ll take your ideas from sketch to finished product as you have the opportunity to learn the creative and business sides of this segment of the industry.

In either program, you’ll be surrounded and inspired by other talented, creatively driven students. And you’ll be pushed, challenged, and, above all else, supported by experienced faculty*. It’s not a walk in the park. It’s a journey toward doing what you love.

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design

Quarter Credit Hours:
180
Timeframe:
12 Quarters

Gainful Employment

Outcomes

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design

Outcomes

See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/3861 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

Design
Graduates integrate the art of fashion design with the knowledge of materials and apparel production.

Production Skills
Graduates integrate textile knowledge and process skills in the production of garments from concept development to finished product.

Technology
Graduates effectively employ industry software and equipment to design and produce garments and produce garment technical packages.

Context and Critical Thinking
Graduates evaluate interconnections of historical perspectives, global events, forecasting, design, and color to create products relevant to fashion industry business trends.

Professionalism
Graduates exemplify professional standards, ethics, and business concepts.

Communication
Graduates display the ability to professionally communicate their ideas visually and verbally.


View Academic Catalog

Classroom Experience


Taking risks is nothing to new to me.

It takes more than a love of fashion to carve out a career in such a highly competitive field. It takes confidence, drive, and hard work. And it takes the skills our program can help you build. You’ll start with fundamentals like color theory, fashion drawing, pattern-making, accessory design, and life drawing, then begin to add to your skills in areas including fabric and fiber selection, color trend analysis, and target market research. You’ll explore concept development, technical drawing and design, specialty design markets, and product development. You’ll study current designers, apparel trends & concepts, and managing the apparel product development process. See our gainful employment pages for possible careers that match the program that interests you.

Meet our Alumni

  • The Art Institute of Charleston, a branch of The Art Institute of Atlanta alumni Ashley Canzater

    Ashley Canzater

    Graphic & Web Design , 2015

    "Working in this type of environment helps me to perform at my best."

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    Ashley Canzater

    Marketing Assistant at SC Thrive

    Ashley Cantazer is a marketing assistant at SC Thrive, an organization that helps South Carolinians achieve stability by providing access to quality of life resources. Ashley is based in Columbia, South Carolina, and works on everything from social media posts to creating marketing materials, managing outside vendors, and updating the internal video log with stories and content.

    Ashley says that her path to SC Thrive was bumpy—her previous job did not provide the tools she needed to be successful. Today, she is working for a company that encourages her growth. She describes her workplace as diverse and family-oriented. “Everyone speaks to me as if they’ve known me for years. Working in this type of environment helps me to perform at my best. Ashley adds that being in an entry-level position requires commitment. “Every day is a learning experience. Keeping an open mind and remaining optimistic has [helped me to be] successful in this field.”

    Ashley, who in 2015 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design from The Art Institute of Charleston, says that the late nights of studying helped to get her where she is today. She states that she saw the benefits of her hard work during her first internship, where she was recognized for her efforts and commended by her supervisor. “Putting forth a full effort allows me to be successful.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/397 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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What Will I Study?

Study Section

I want to share my sense of style with the world.

The rigorous Fashion Design curriculum is grounded in the realities of the creative side of fashion. The focus is on building the tools to compete in an industry that rewards those who help move fashion forward.

You'll study:

  • Pattern-making
  • Technical Drawing
  • Fashion Drawing
  • Sewing Techniques
  • Event & Fashion Show Production
  • Trends & Concepts in Apparel
  • Current Designers
  • Textile Fundamentals
  • Fundamentals of Business
  • Concept Development
  • Product Development
  • Merchandise Management
  • Apparel and Accessory

Design topics:

  • Sketching and illustration
  • Pattern-making and draping
  • Garment construction
  • Textiles
  • Critical analysis
  • Computer aided design
  • Clothing design


I'm looking for my proving ground.

At The Art Institutes system of schools, creativity is our core, our calling, our culture. Our Fashion Design degree programs are built on that creative foundation. It’s also built on our knowledge that a creative career is not for the faint of heart. And that today’s fashion industry is as full of challenges as it is brimming with opportunities. It’s tough out there, so it’s tough in here. But we’ll support you along every step of your journey. That’s why we provide the mentoring and real-world experience you need to prevail, with faculty* who’ve worked in the field and internship possibilities at successful businesses. You’ll be encouraged and expected to be bold. To take risks. To push yourself and the people around you. It won’t be easy. In fact, it’ll be the hardest thing you’ll ever love.

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.

 

Meet Our Faculty

  • Andrew Allen

    Digital Photography

    "My goal is to have students create a beautiful and interesting world, filled with good design."

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    Andrew Allen

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    Being accepted into the High School of Art & Design in New York City validated my talent. Being surrounded by classmates who shared my dedication and passion was just as important as the skills I learned, and it all carried over to my career as a graphic designer and photographer.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    Students enjoy real-life anecdotes—both my professional successes and my mishaps. My business experiences help give my students a clearer vision of the industry and open their eyes to opportunities they may not have realized before. Quick example: I tell students how I can create artwork in Charleston, digitally send it to Quebec, Canada, and have the finished printed material shipped to New York, all the while meeting the client’s deadline and expectations.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    I enjoy giving a photographic assignment to students, asking them to “imitate” a famous photographer. They pick from a list of well-known artists and tackle an image. They learn how to do “hands-on” research correctly, understand how an image was created, and produce a realistic rendition of it. They learn about history, exposure, lighting and style—and how to communicate visually and articulate their choices.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

    I encourage students to collaborate with their peers through interdepartmental activities and assignments. Photography students gain confidence and skills working alongside Fashion and Culinary students as subjects or models, or by documenting their apparel or their dishes. Those students learn how to product-shoot in the studio, how to take a portrait, and also to photograph on location. They all benefit from seeing each other’s creativity and learn teamwork.

    What’s your one piece of advice for a student embarking on a creative career?

    Students come to school because they’re passionate about what they’re studying. My advice to them is to learn how to cope. One thing I can guarantee is that things may not always go smoothly. But the ability to cope, along with patience, will give you a better opportunity to succeed in all aspects of life.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    I’m passionate about teaching. I believe my purpose is to help students gain confidence and to nurture their talents. My goal is to have them create a beautiful and interesting world, filled with good design.

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  • David Pendse

    Culinary Arts

    "It sounds simple, but a sense of urgency is critical in the hospitality industry."

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    David Pendse

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    When I was in high school, I had a part-time job in a local ice cream shop and deli. I was fascinated watching my co-workers making ice cream from scratch, slicing meats, and making soups. There was something about it that made me feel alive and inspired.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    At the beginning of each quarter I assign students a personal project. I simply ask them two questions: What is a sense of urgency? And how do you use that as a student and in your personal life?

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

    In my Senior Practicum Course in Culinary, students basically go through the steps required to open their own restaurant. Throughout the process, they interact with students in Fashion, Graphic Design, and Photography.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    My teaching style can be summed up like this: Creativity and time management. I believe time management is one of the most relevant skills needed to be successful in all aspects of life. I try to develop those skills by challenging students to create realistic goals to meet daily objectives. It sounds simple, but a sense of urgency is critical in the hospitality industry.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    Every course is different, but every day my focus is the same: a hands-approach to learning through cooking demonstrations and teaching both classic and modern techniques.

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  • Lynne Riding

    Fashion Design

    "Once a student is able to see within and trust their instincts, the whole world opens up."

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    Lynne Riding

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    One of my first freelance commissions was for English Vogue. That was huge for me—giving me confidence and, as a professional, to see my name in print in Vogue!

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    We discuss the challenges of the fashion business in class—both the highs and the lows. I stress the importance of daily practice and work ethic...being responsible for yourself, your work, and your ideas. As I juggle my teaching, fashion illustration and artwork, I believe my students see and understand my commitment.

    How do you inspire students to push themselves beyond their perceived limits?

    I try to instill a confidence in my students to develop their own ideas...to provide a catalyst for provoking thought and ideas. I believe that only when they have an all-consuming interest in creative work will a student be ready to question, and willing to evolve and change their original ideas, and avoid getting stuck. Once a student is able to see within and trust their instincts, the whole world opens up.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

    The professional world operates by interaction. Collaboration enriches the design experience and opens students to the possibilities of what they can learn from working with diverse groups. Each student brings their own skillsets, strengths and fresh ideas, and that enhances everyone’s work.

    What’s your one piece of advice for a student embarking on a creative career?

    Have pride and respect for yourself and your work. Be willing to push yourself and to go the extra mile if necessary. Be consistent and reliable, always timely, and you’ll be called on again and again. Above all, don't give in. Persist, and it’ll happen for you.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    I have many years of experience in teaching, both here and in the UK, and I’ve never worked with such a caring group of faculty, who give so much to the students.

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  • Marjory Wentworth

    Digital Filmmaking & Video Production

    "Creative thinking skills are quite simply problem-solving skills for life."

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    Marjory Wentworth

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    As a college student, I wrote a poem that wrote itself. It felt as if I was a vehicle, but I wasn't driving the car. That's when I realized the power of writing in a way I never had before.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    I teach creative writing occasionally, so that’s the most direct connection I make with students. I also do a great deal of public speaking as both a writer and the poet laureate of the state, so much of my advice in that area comes from personal experience. And much of what I teach in Professional Communication comes from years of working in the public relations field.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    I assign a poetry project that lets students choose material of interest to them; their grade is partly determined by their creative presentation of that material. I’ve been astonished by what they accomplish—from books to pianos to scrolls.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    I care more about how they treat one another than almost anything. I want them to be good citizens in the world...to care about learning for the sake of learning. I want them to develop analytical skills that they can apply to all areas of their lives. Creative thinking skills are quite simply problem-solving skills for life.

    What’s the most critical advice you would offer any student embarking on a creative career?

    Follow your bliss. Any writer or artist knows that they greatest joy in creativity is the process itself...the rest is frosting on the cake.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    Students need to know that you care about them and their success deeply.

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The Art Institute of California - Hollywood alumni Christian Ferretti I believe what is going to carry you through is your passion. In the end, if you don't have love for what you do, there is no point. Christian Ferretti
Fashion Design, The Art Institute of California—Hollywood*, 2011