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BA (Hons) Textile Design

Course Duration

3 years; full-time
4 years; full-time Extended BA route
6 years; part-time
7 years; part-time Extended BA route

UCAS Code

Course: WYC2
Institution: P65

Every day we encounter textile design in our lives, encompassing and enriching everything from the clothes that we wear to the pattern, textures and colours of the environments that we live and work in. Join our multidisciplinary textile community and nurture your unique design personality, through an exciting mix of textile material experimentation, personal development and creative industry opportunities.

Our students become accomplished and inspirational textile and surface designers for fashion, interiors, products and craft applications as well as textile buyers, and stylists. You will learn how to design for different markets and audiences, on all kinds of surfaces using traditional skills such as screen printing and digital equipment. With access to our Fab Lab, you can use digital technology to challenge the character of materials and texture.

You’ll be encouraged to experiment and expand on your knowledge of fabrics, techniques and processes. Drawing, design research and development, CAD skills, technical knowledge and professional practice will all be integrated into your learning. We also actively support you in entering national and international design competitions. These core skills will help you to gain greater confidence and grow as a designer and textile specialist. You’ll develop creative sophistication, plus an attitude of visual investigation.

82% of students on our BA (Hons) Textile Design gave us an overall satisfaction rating, with 100% of students agreeing that “my course has provided me with opportunities to apply what I have learnt”.
National Student Survey 2021

Our BA (Hons) Textile Design is an exciting, experimental and supportive space to explore and develop essential textile design skills, through pattern design techniques and material and fabric manipulation. With us, you will develop a firm understanding of the textile industry and develop the traditional and digital skills needed to innovate and create designs and ideas for a wide range of surfaces and applications.

We have a love for colour, drawing, material, texture and pattern, with specialist staff and industry-standard resources that focus on Print, Dye, Stitch, Knit, Tufting and many other surface pattern techniques. You will learn how to design for different markets and audiences, using innovative and experimental approaches to traditional and contemporary textile skills and processes.

Our breathtaking textiles studios are home to an expansive, impressive screen printing space, a dye laboratory, large-format sublimation printer and transfer press, as well as knitting machines, digital embroidery, tufting guns, and a range of state-of-the-art digital printers and scanners, enabling you to realise your fabric design with immediate turnaround. You’ll also have access to AVA software, WGSN and The Future Laboratory.

Our students become accomplished and exciting textile designers for fashion, interiors, product design, craft and fine art applications, as well as textile buyers, stylists and merchandisers. This course also incorporates research into the historical, cultural and sustainable contexts of textile design, as well as developing your critical understanding and appreciation of design principles. You’ll learn advanced research and communication skills, alongside a practical understanding of traditional and digital design processes, resulting in a diverse portfolio of creative outputs.

Emily Gilbert Textile Practices BA Hons Textile Design at Plymouth College of Art

Intricate and detailed textile work created by Emily Gilbert, 2021

Our design studio is a dynamic and friendly, professional and nurturing environment to work and learn. You’ll be taught by a team of experienced academics, all of whom run their own creative studios and who have worked with globally renowned agencies and retailers. Our staff proudly mentor the textile designers of tomorrow through their expert knowledge of textiles and their passion for both traditional and emerging textile processes and materials. The programme is supported by a brilliant team of technical staff and visiting lecturers, which in recent years has included prestigious designers such as Timorous Beasties, Zandra Rhodes, Joules, Finisterre, Katie Jones, Dr. Manrutt Wongkaew, Dulux, Anna Gravelle, Bay and Brown textile design agents, and Mirjam Rouden textile design studio.

We arrange regular visits from artists, designers and recent graduates to give presentations on their career paths, creative inspiration and top tips on how to succeed in the creative industries.

You’ll be introduced to potential employers through exciting live industry projects for top companies that have included Mercedes, Sainsburys Home, Joules clothing, Finisterre, Princess Yachts, Make Southwest and The Eden Project.

Through sponsored industrial projects you’ll learn how to meet the needs of clients and see your designs made ready for production, gaining real-life design experience. Study trips have included Heimtextil in Frankfurt, Premiere Vision and Maison&Objet in Paris.

After graduating, you’ll be equipped to start your career and capitalise on your design skills, whether designing for large, well-known brands or starting your own independent enterprise.

“I definitely feel like our individuality was nurtured, and although hard work, the programme and tutors have given me the confidence I need to now start setting up my own business. The facilities are second to none, and if I had to re-do my degree, I would still choose Arts University Plymouth.”
Winona Flay, BA (Hons) Printed Textile Design & Surface Pattern
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A wide angle shot of Plymouth College of Art's Fabric Lab consisting of work benches, resources and facilities for textiles, printmaking and dyeing
Lecturer Becky Dodman stands next to a textiles student and discuss his work laid out on the print table in front of them, a mix of bright colours and fabrics in our bright and open print studio

100% of students on our BA (Hons) Textile Design agreed that “I have had the opportunities to provide feedback on my course”, with 94% agreeing “my course has challenged me to achieve my best work” and “the IT resources and facilities provided have supported my learning well”.

91% of our BA (Hons) Textile Design students agreed that “staff are good at explaining things”, with 90% agreeing that “marking and assessment has been fair” and 85% of students satisfied with the learning opportunities available to them on the course.

90% of our BA (Hons) Textile Design were satisfied with the learning resources available to them, including IT resources and facilities, library resources, and course-specific resources.

87% of our BA (Hons) Textile Design agreed that “the skills I have developed during my time in Higher Education will be useful for my future career” and “the institution provides an inclusive and supportive learning environment”.

Although many of our students do come in with top grades and high UCAS points, these aren’t necessarily essential for entry. We typically ask for a minimum of 112 UCAS points, but we understand that talented artists, designers and makers can have a wide range of relevant strengths and skills beyond formal qualifications. We’re just as interested in exploring your portfolio and discussing your creative experiences as we are in seeing your grades.

We recognise the value of a variety of qualifications and relevant experience and welcome applications from students who have followed less traditional routes. We also accept a range of international qualifications and will look at each application individually.

For more information please consult our How to Apply page and the UCAS Tariff Table.