Art Institutes


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 & instructors.

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design

Quarter Credit Hours:
12 Quarters

Gainful Employment


Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the program, graduates will have the opportunity to:
  • Integrate the art of fashion design with the knowledge of apparel production processes from concept development through finished product.
  • Integrate advanced skills in construction, textiles, draping, fitting, and patternmaking, product and concept development in relation to a production setting.
  • Use industry software to develop advanced knowledge of technical sketching and computer design skills and produce specification sheets.
  • Critically evaluate and solve problems involving historical perspectives, forecasting, design, and color to create products relevant to the fashion industry business trends.
  • Articulate the nature and culture of the fashion industry, present innovative design concepts, and exemplify professional ethics and standards

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

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.

Meet our Alumni

  • The Art Institute of California - Orange County alumni Darci Walker

    Darci Walker

    Fashion Design , 2014

    "[My education] taught me the fundamentals I needed to grow into the designer I am [today]."

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    Darci Walker

    Darci Walker is working as an assistant womenswear designer for True Religion Brand Jeans in Veron, California. She works with the design team to create graphic and textile ideas, researches trends, and sketches garments. “[On a typical day], I reach out to vendors, go to fittings, do technical sketches, and work with graphics and designs for new garments,” she says.

    Darci is proud to work for an established company—especially so early in her career. “I love getting into work with the amazing designers. I learn so much from them every day.” She finds inspiration in clothes from the 70s, 80s, and 90s. “There’s so much culture to draw from within that time.” And she also looks to the work of Betsey Johnson, who she calls her ultimate fashion hero.

    Darci, who in 2014 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design from The Art Institute of California—Orange County, says that her education taught her the fundamentals she needed to become a fashion designer. She recommends that budding designers make themselves stand out by being individuals. “Be yourself. Design what you are passionate about.”

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

  • Ai Orange County alumni

    Marva Ayloush

    Fashion Design , 2016

    "The courses [prepared me] for what I love to do every day."

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    Marva Ayloush

    Assists in Costume Research, Fabric Planning, and Creating Mood Boards

    Marva Ayloush is a design assistant at Creative Costuming & Design. She joined the company as a technical designer and pattern maker, working on flats and helping to develop pattern pieces. "I was later promoted to design assistant, where I help the designer with mood boards, costume research, client meetings, and fabric allotment/planning."

    She adds that a typical work day includes meeting with the head designer, who provides her with files to make mood boards or swatch cards. "I'll make appropriate fabric combinations and present them to the designer. I also do fabric allotment and planning. [This allows us to] give the client a quote on how much [a product] cost with all materials and labor. If there is a fix needed on an illustration, I will [make it] on Photoshop."

    Marva admits that keeping up with new software can be challenging. "You'll have to learn new software or learn the process of how the company works. Both of these things popped up the moment I started my job. It was hard, but when you have passion and drive you will make it through." She states that the fashion market demands are non-stop. "Costumes are considered to be a bit more fun and flexible, but sometimes it's what the client wants and we have to stick to that. Designing in those parameters can be frustrating but it teaches you new things."

    Marva, who in 2016 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design from The Art Institute of California—Orange County, says that her education was very industry-based and prepared her for her career. "The courses [prepared me] for what I love to do every day." She says that a high level of commitment is needed for success. "In the costume industry, we share different stories or article we see to gain inspiration. Everybody feeds from [that] energy so it's a brilliant creative cycle."


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
  • 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
  • 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.


Miami International University of Art & Design alumni Marlon Munoz I'm challenged by the opportunity to take my ideas and bring them to life. Marlon Munoz
Visual Effects & Motion Graphics, Miami International University of Art & Design, 2008