If you’ve decided to study fashion design, then you’ve at least overcome the first decision-making hurdle. Now you just need to decide on where you will be studying fashion. There are many fashion design institutes ranging in price and stature, available in a range of tertiary educational facilities. Here are the three main places you can study fashion design.

Study Fashion Design


Considered the more traditional option for studying fashion design, colleges generally require you to study on-premises, full-time, with certain lecture, tutor or practical attendance necessary to succeed. Colleges tend to offer four-year bachelor’s degrees with further postgraduate options available for those wishing to specialise. They do offer shorter courses as well, many of which could be part-time options.


One of the major differentiating factors with regards to studying fashion design at college level is the theoretical focus, although this is not to say there is no practical side. There will generally be more of a basis provided in the history of the industry and impact on society, alongside the practical requirements. This tends to suit the creative nature of the fashion industry as many will benefit from learning about previous trends, colours and styles that are often developed and brought back as a nod to such eras.


There are many benefits associated with studying fashion design at an established college, one of which is the opportunity to interact with like-minded individuals on a daily basis while learning from influencers in the industry. Lecturers and professors will most likely be working in the profession, providing great networking opportunities across the sector.


Another major benefit is the brand association of an established fashion college. Whatever way you look at it, having studied at the same institution as Tom Ford, Donna Karan or Calvin Klein will definitely open doors when you’ve successfully completed your qualification.


Whatever fashion design schools you choose, your success within the fashion industry ultimately lies with you. If time and budget are constraints, start where you can and work your way towards your ultimate goal. Often credits can contribute towards another course at a separate institution so possibly start by researching this aspect before embarking on any fashion design course. This is an industry that demands tenacity, hard work and adaptability so, if you want to make it, you will.




If you’re a hands-on person who is looking to get real-world practical experience while studying the theory behind fashion design, then a Technikon is your best option. The qualifications offered by a Technikon are Diplomas with courses ranging in length and intensity consisting of various modules. This compartmentalised structure allows people to pick up or expand on studies when funds or time are readily available.


When it comes to fashion design, a Technikon will teach you all the basics of the industry, covering various aspects of fashion and textiles. Practical design and manufacturing processes will be complemented by modules of computer skills, fabric awareness, textile design, textile printing, business studies, marketing and communication.


Technikon’s are often a more cost-effective option than a college but this is not to say that a Diploma would be overlooked. There are many benefits to having a Diploma – it’s an instant credential that tells any potential employer that you have the fundamental skills required to succeed in their line of business. Employers can also be assured that you are prepared to work hard to achieve your goals.

Read more: Local vs International Fashion Schools

For some jobs, having a Diploma is an essential. A Diploma in fashion design can open doors to many solid-paying career opportunities, including:

  • Assistant buyer in fashion or textile industry
  • Buyer in fashion or textile industry
  • Fashion or textile designer
  • Merchandiser
  • Stylist in a fashion company
  • Self-employed design, colour or trend consultant to the fashion and textile industry

Online Fashion Courses

For many people, online courses in fashion design are becoming a much more realistic option. The soaring cost of tertiary education means that many can’t afford to study full-time and online fashion courses are suited to an adjustable time and budget.


The reason online fashion design courses are a cheaper alternative is the cost savings related to hiring staff and renting premises. They also save you on transportation costs as you can study from the convenience of your own home.


Often online fashion design courses will have a more extensive range of choice, because there is no limitation to formulating curricula and many traditional colleges will not offer a course for just one student. Not so with online! Select the best courses to suit your unique interests and tastes.


The adaptability of online courses also makes them a really worthwhile choice for those with work or other responsibilities that might dominate time. If you’re busy throughout the day but are able to dedicate some night time to studies, then that’s perfect. You are also able to complete the course at your own pace.


As with everything there are pros and cons of studying fashion online versus offline. The only limitation with online fashion design is the incredibly practical nature of the fashion industry. However, this doesn’t mean that online courses will not work, you may just have to perform some real-time practical experience at a venue and time of your own choosing.

There are many fashion institutions offering really exceptional courses, but it’s always worth checking the institute’s record of success and compliancy to ensure the institute is reputable.


Read More: Types of Fashion Courses


Villioti Fashion Institute is an accredited tertiary fashion institution that takes pride in making the ordinary extraordinary.


A higher certificate in fashion design as well as a diploma or degree in fashion are just some of the option available.


Led by Spero Villioti, who has run a successful fashion brand for more than 30 years, Villioti Fashion Institute prides itself on being “extraordinary in the details”, which is what sets their students apart from others and secures them a future in fashion.