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

Associate of Applied Arts in Fashion Design

Quarter Credit Hours:
90
Timeframe:
6 Quarters

Gainful Employment

Outcomes

Associate of Applied Arts in Fashion Design

Outcomes
See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/443 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

• Basic Skills - Demonstrate knowledge of apparel production processes from concept development through finished product

• Process Skills - Demonstrate advanced skills in construction, draping, fitting, and patternmaking as well as in specialty textile design, and product and concept development

• Technology and Production - Demonstrate the ability to use industry software to create, grade, and mark patterns; use software to develop specification sheets; and develop advanced knowledge of technical sketching and computer design

• Communication - Explain connections between world events and design, color, and forecasting trends in the apparel industry, and apply current events to business trends

• Professional Practice - Demonstrate ability to apply professional standards and business concepts related to apparel design, including the ability to work collaboratively and to present and articulate concepts

View Academic Catalog

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/1397 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

• Basic Skills - Demonstrate knowledge of apparel production processes from concept development through finished product

• Process Skills - Demonstrate advanced skills in construction, draping, fitting, and patternmaking as well as in specialty textile design, and product and concept development

• Technology and Production - Demonstrate the ability to use industry software to create, grade, and mark patterns; use software to develop specification sheets; and develop advanced knowledge of technical sketching and computer design

• Communication - Explain connections between world events and design, color, and forecasting trends in the apparel industry, and apply current events to business trends

• Professional Practice - Graduates will demonstrate ability to apply professional standards and business concepts related to apparel design, including the ability to work collaboratively and to present and articulate concepts

View Academic Catalog

Classroom Experience

Taking risks is nothing new for 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.

  • Deepa Ganguly

    Fashion Design

    "No matter what career you pursue, respect is key to success."

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    Deepa Ganguly

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

    As a child, I designed my own clothes. Eventually my mom's friends started to pay for my designs. I earned a scholarship to the premiere fashion design institute in India— but I had a science scholarship too, and my parents wanted me to get a degree in microbiology. It took a lot of effort to convince my parents [to allow me to attend design school]! I have no doubt that teaching fashion was my destiny.

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

    I’ve worked in the fashion industry in a creative capacity, as well as in manufacturing, and I’ve owned and operated an evening and bridal wear shop. I’ve seen the fashion industry change along with technology. Fabrics have become more interesting and design has become more practical. I make sure to keep my students current with the industry, stressing that innovation is the key to success and that opportunities are endless.

    How would you describe your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    I don’t believe in just imparting knowledge, but in molding students and their personalities. I hope I inspire them to push themselves beyond their own perceived limits at all times—to not only be knowledgeable, but to be better individuals.

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

    Collaboration between students from different programs yields a more complete perspective. Every quarter, we host a fashion show called “Inspire” that showcases student collections. While the garments shown are designed and constructed by Fashion Design students, the graphics are planned by Graphic Design students. Photography students take pictures, video students take care of the music and videos, and so forth. Working together, combining all their talents, they make the event a success.

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

    No matter what career you pursue, respect is key to success. We must respect ourselves, our work, our ambition, and our dreams. Respect brings hard work, dedication and perseverance, as well as kindness, acceptance, fairness, and people skills.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    Our Fashion Design department is a family. The entire industry is a family. We work together toward a mutual goal, and I’m extremely fortunate to be part of this family.

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  • Kellie Wallace

    Interior Design

    "Be able to tell the client not just what you did, but why and how."

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    Kellie Wallace

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

    I’d always been creative...always rearranging my room, choosing paint colors or wall coverings. In college, I’d sampled a few non-creative fields, like biology and accounting, but hadn’t settled on a major yet. My father worked at the same university and suggested interior design. I had no idea that was even a career option. But when I got into it, I realized I could not only use my creative side, but also explore the technical aspects of the built environment.

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

    I always try to give examples of things I’ve experienced that I think students can learn from—whether it’s a mistake I once made, or just an observation about what happens in the real world.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    I try to make every course I teach very hands-on. I use class assignments to show students how they can apply the material we’ve covered. To me, students do best when they’re presented with a variety of learning methods—auditory, kinesthetic, and visual. I also encourage their progress through praise for work well done.

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

    Collaboration is essential to professional growth. Recently, students in one of my classes had the opportunity to work not only with Graphic Design students, but with students from a school in Troyes, France. The project was time-consuming and the time difference between Dallas and France was challenging. But the students learned a lot by working with different programs and cultures.

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

    In Interior Design, it’s important to use both sides of the brain. It’s a creative profession, but students also need to tap into the logical side to deal with things like building codes and specification writing.

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

    Use critical thinking and problem solving in everything you do. Be able to tell the client not just what you did, but why and how.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    I love when a student has that "light bulb" moment where they can apply what they’ve learned.

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  • Vicky Ardaya

    Culinary Arts

    "Being part of The Art Institute of Dallas family has allowed me to grow as a professional and an educator."

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    Vicky Ardaya

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

    When I became a Culinary instructor, teaching diverse students from different countries, I was able to combine two careers and to grow both as a culinary professional and as an educator.

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

    Having worked in many different countries, I’m able to share with students not just my professional experience, but insights about diverse people and cultures.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    More than any one single assignment, I’d say that my students know me as an instructor who’s always there for them, always ready to mentor them if they need me. My views on education have evolved a great deal. I try to infuse all of my experiences, ideas, values, and perspectives into everything I teach.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success?

    I believe that two essential components for success are teamwork and good communication.

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

    Set your goals for the short and long term, and revise them as you accomplish them.

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

    Be realistic and optimistic, believe in yourself, and have faith.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    Being part of the Ai family has allowed me to grow as a professional and an educator.

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What Will I Study?

Fashion Design 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 in 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.

 

  • A. Nicole Ward

    Culinary Arts , 2002

    "I took the knowledge [I gained at The Art Institute of Dallas] and formed it into a career that I enjoy waking up to every day."

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    A. Nicole Ward

    Two-Time Food Network Winner and Co-Owner of Sinsational Cakes Bakery

    A. Nicole Ward is the co-owner of Sinsational Cakes Bakery in North Richland Hills, Texas. She manages four employees, as well as front and back of house operations. She takes pride in providing customers with excellent customer service and desserts. Nicole’s workday begins early, with a 5:30 am wake up call. She is at the bakery until at least 6:30 every evening. “I love creating and experimenting with new recipes,” she says.

    Nicole is also becoming a familiar face on The Food Network, winning on two of the network’s programs—“Cake Wars” and “Cupcake Wars.” In 2016, she won “Cake Wars’ Happy Birthday Hippopotamus Style” episode, in which she wowed the judges with a white vanilla bean cake with balsamic strawberry and mascarpone filling. As the winner, she took home a $10,000 prize.

    Nicole also came out on top in “Cupcake Wars” in 2013. “I’m still pinching myself. I enjoy challenging myself with new recipes and cake ideas. I love meeting people who have the same passion I do. I just love to talk about food and cake.”

    Nicole, who in 2002 earned an Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts from The Art Institute of Dallas, says that her education provided the foundation she needed to become successful in culinary arts. “I took the knowledge and formed it into a career that I enjoy waking up to every day.” She recommends that current students understand the value of “owning their education.” And she adds that culinary arts is a profession that requires long hours. “Be passionate about what you’re doing; if not, you can’t give it 100%.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/441 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Aubrey Butcher

    Interior Design , 2007

    "I felt very prepared going into the real world. The Art Institute of Dallas does a tremendous job staying up to date on technology."

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    Aubrey Butcher

    Interior Designer and Curator at Gilded Heights

    Aubrey Butcher is an interior designer and curator at Gilded Heights in Dallas, Texas. She’s responsible for designing clients’ homes, as well as creating blog posts and curating goods. “I enjoy how personal interior design is,” she says. “I love navigating the design process with clients—especially when they trust me to take a risk they might not have otherwise.” Aubrey adds that a person’s home is a very intimate place and she enjoys being a part of making it a “space they cherish.”

    Aubrey started Gilded Heights after nearly ten years of working at larger hospitality design firms. “I am most proud of starting [my company]. There is a lot to learn and I am excited to see where it takes me.” She is inspired by travel and culture. “The more places I travel, the more those experiences show in my work. I think the diversity only benefits me in bringing new ideas and products to clients.” Aubrey believes that trends in interior design will continue to focus on mixing metals and materials to create a pulled-together balance. “I also see a rise in clients wanting to incorporate more eclectic found pieces with new pieces.”

    Aubrey, who in 2007 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design from The Art Institute of Dallas, says that her education provided an awareness of the industry that was critical to her success. “I felt very prepared going into the real world. The Art Institute of Dallas does a tremendous job staying up to date on technology.” She adds that current students should view every task as an opportunity. “Starting at the bottom of the totem pole can be frustrating but work hard and [it] will pay off. A good attitude pays off even more.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/447 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Evelyn Williams

    Baking & Pastry , 2010

    "My education at The Art Institute of Dallas taught me not only the technical pieces of my industry, but the importance of building relationships."

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    Evelyn Williams

    Cooking School Manager at Central Market and HEB

    Evelyn Williams is the cooking school manager at Central Market and HEB, food stores that aim to provide fresh choices and culinary adventures to shoppers. Based in Texas, Evelyn creates cooking classes and manages a team of chefs. She says that she’s typically thinking 2-3 months in advance about seasonal ingredients, weather, and upcoming holidays to plan her classes. “I then think about new ways to present old ideas and recipes and menus that people would want to go home and create. I brainstorm class themes, menus, and recipes—sometimes testing recipes and doing research on what is popular right now. Then I work with a team of chefs to come up with ideas and help prepare for a class.”

    Evelyn is excited to offer an online cooking school that connects her to people across the world. “I enjoy being around a variety of different types of food everyday and having the freedom to create something unique daily. I love that teaching people how to cook improves their lives and brings them closer to their friends and family.” Her culinary inspiration comes from talking to people and learning about their culinary heritage. “[I ask them] what is their version of comfort food, what do they make during holidays. My heroes are grandmothers—it seems like no matter if you are Greek, Puerto Rican, Nigerian or Indian, grandmothers seem to have the best food and they do it so effortlessly!”

    Evelyn, who in 2010 earned an Associate of Applied Science in Baking & Pastry from The Art Institute of Dallas, says that her education taught her the technical and relationship-building elements she needed to be successful in the industry. “Some of the highlights of my career have come from connections I made during culinary school.” She adds that current students should stay focused on learning. “[I took part in everything] whether it was volunteering for every event, doing the extra reading and assignments, or washing the dishes when no one else wanted to. I had to make sure that I loved every part of the field.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/1839 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Jason Bosso

    Culinary Arts , 2004

    "The Art Institute of Dallas taught me that restaurants aren't all about cooking."

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    Jason Bosso

    Proprietor, Chef, Bartender and Busboy for Brain Storm Shelter, LLC

    Jason Bosso is the proprietor, chef, bartender and busboy for Brain Storm Shelter, LLC: which includes Twisted Root, Truck Yard, and Tacos & Avocados in Texas. He says that the primary responsibility of his job is to “make sure people leave happy.” Jason works alongside fellow graduate Quincy Hart, who earned an Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts from The Art Institute of Dallas in 2004.

    A typical workday includes team meetings in the morning, restaurant visits at lunch, and lawyer/real estate meetings in the afternoon. He says he’s proud to watch culinary artists develop—especially when their education helps them to grow within in a restaurant. He lists French Laundry Chef Thomas Keller as one of his culinary inspirations.

    Jason, who in 2004 earned an Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts from The Art Institute of Dallas, says that his education taught him that restaurants aren’t all about cooking. He recommends that current students start small and work their way up. “You won’t be an executive chef in two years. It’s ok to chop onions. Be humble and listen and learn.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/441 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Johnathan Hayden

    Fashion Design , 2012

    "I loved how technical [the school] is. It really prepares its students to enter the industry with practical and real goals."

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    Johnathan Hayden

    Creative Director of His Own Brand

    Johnathan Hayden is the creative director of his own brand, based in Savannah, Georgia. He’s responsible for designing the collection and collaborating as an illustrator—as well as reading, researching, and sketching. “I enjoy not knowing what each day is going to be like. You never know who is in your e-mail, who you are going to meet that could be your next collaboration, or most importantly what sort of inspiration out in the world you will be receptive to.”

    Johnathan is excited to have secured the financial backing necessary to make fashion his life’s work. He’s inspired by social issues and discussions, as well as literature and film. He looks to Dries van Noten, Aldous Huxley, and Quentin Tarantino for creative inspiration. Johnathan cautions that fashion design is not for everyone. “You have to have an honest conversation with yourself and ask hard questions. There are many positions other than the designer that offer fulfilling opportunity. I have had many instances (filled with tears) where I questioned if I really wanted to be the designer. You have to constantly want to get better.”

    Johnathan, who in 2012 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design from The Art Institute of Dallas, says his education prepared him for a career in fashion. “I loved how technical [the school] is. It really prepares its students to enter the industry with practical and real goals, rather than inflated and saccharine dreams of becoming big stars.” Johnathan explains that his instructors instilled the need to know all aspects of the industry, providing a “relevant and focused foundation in knowledge [students] will absolutely need to survive.” He adds that fashion can treat technology as a trend instead of something that’s here to stay. “[It] has yet to really embrace technology as the new frontier into smart textiles, interactive shopping experiences, and wearable technology.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/1397 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Quincy Hart

    Culinary Arts , 2004

    "[My instructors] drove home the point of serving and treating people with products and attitude that would please yourself."

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    Quincy Hart

    Quincy Hart is the co-founder, chef, and culture guru at Twisted Root Burger, Company and Truck Yard in Dallas. He’s responsible for maintaining the company’s culture, creating a fun atmosphere, coaching, monitoring the quality of products, and “shining a positive light in customers life each and every day.” Quincy works alongside fellow graduate Jason Bosso, who earned an Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts from The Art Institute of Dallas in 2004.

    Quincy’s committed to getting to know his customers and engaging them in sing-alongs on the microphone. “I am blessed and fortunate to be a part of a brand that allows me to touch so many people. [I enjoy instilling] in them that life is not that serious, not that long, and we should enjoy it, however and whenever we can."

    Quincy is inspired by the dream of a feel good world and he hopes that he makes a difference in someone’s life each day—either through a personal or culinary interaction. He recommends that current culinary students be professional, respectful, and pay attention to the people they serve. But he emphasizes the need to have fun. “Never ever forget where you came from because you never know who you'll need to get where you want to go.”

    Quincy, who in 2004 earned an Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts from The Art Institute of Dallas, says that his professional Chef instructors taught him to serve and treat patrons with respect. “[They] drove home the point of serving and treating people with products and attitude that would please yourself.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/441 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Stephen Batts

    Digital Filmmaking & Video Production , 2011

    "[My education showed me how to] provide clients with a web video presence for branding, trainings, and new ways of communicating."

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    Stephen Batts

    UX Designer at Selerix, Inc.

    Stephen Batts is a senior UX designer at Selerix, Inc., in McKinney, Texas. Selerix provides clients with a comprehensive employee benefits enrollment system and Stephen is responsible for designing interactive benefits enrollment and education systems. He explains that a typical day includes creating designs, storyboarding, writing scripts, and implementing new features and training materials. “[I enjoy] being able to combine my knowledge of the web and design with my video expertise.”

    Stephen is proud to be establishing his personal brand in the video and corporate industry. “[I’ve] secured a lead position within a growing company to redefine the user experience for each of the company's products and services,” he states. Stephen counts Ridley Scott, Alfred Hitchcock, and Salvador Dali as creative inspirations.

    Stephen, who in 2011 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Digital Filmmaking & Video Production from The Art Institute of Dallas, says his education provided valuable video production experience. “[I can] provide clients with a web video presence for branding, training, and new ways of communication.” He recommends that current students gain hands on learning experience and keep on top of technology. “With the rise of social networking, smart phones, and other digital solutions, companies are redefining their business needs and finding new ways to communicate their vision, employee efficiency, and training.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/1325 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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