Fashion Design BA (Hons) application portfolio advice

Your portfolio

Your portfolio should be around 20-30 pieces. You will need to send images from sketchbooks, drawings, projects and a piece of writtenwork.

Our main interest is you indicating your ability as a potential creative designer. Your portfolio should show an initiation of design ideas, howyou experiment with materials and how you develop finished items from a concept or theme.In your work demonstrate your interest in fashion design through your knowledge and inspiration about contemporary fashion. In yourpersonal statement it would be useful to explain which fashion magazines you read, websites or fashion blogs you visit and about any othercultural interests you have, i.e. film, music, architecture, dance, travel, sports etc. We advise you to look at contemporary magazines not just fashion editorials for up to date articles.

Portfolio submission options for overseas applicants

What are we looking for?

We are looking for:

  • A passion for the subject – demonstrating knowledge of fashion design
  • Drawing skills – be able to demonstrate a range of approaches
  • How you generate and develop ideas
  • Experimental approach to handling and developing materials and textiles
  • Basic awareness and knowledge of 3D construction
  • Good fashion illustration skills
  • If relevant – appropriate skills and knowledge for the broader context of subject such as textiles, photography and graphics

What should a portfolio contain?


In your sketchbook and portfolio you need to demonstrate a good level of fashion drawing through use of differentmedia. Show general evidence of drawing ability through relevant still life, life drawing, initial fashion design sketches and sketch work relevant for textiles for fashion.Where appropriate (not necessity) the use of CAD for illustration, technical elements and general presentation can be used.



Sketchbooks reveal how you utilise imagery and a concept to develop ideas through experimentation. They reveal a great deal about howyou approach a project, as well as evidence of the subject matter that inspire you. You should include primary and secondary research source material, such as exhibition visits, study trips abroad, artists’ inspiration and own interests. Also include visual references to contemporary brands/designers and show your interests in the wider issues of fashion design. Include textile development (if applicable) through the use of colour and fabric exploration for fashion ideas. 



We are looking to see how you develop an idea and how you research and respond to a project brief. Show evidence of a project in yourportfolio that demonstrates creativity, a deep involvement in your work and your conclusion or final idea. This could be any art or design project (either as part of your course or an independent project). Idea generation could also be demonstrated through toile documentation and final ideas can be shown through a photoshoot and/or sketch illustration work.


Written work

Please bring an essay or a recent example of writing as we require evidence of your writing ability. Even though this is a practice-based degree, there are elements of written work required as part of the curriculum. For example, you will be asked to compile a technical file,document lecture notes, and enter into dialogue through wikis and blogs as well as produce written essays or journalistic pieces of writing.

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