Fashion and Textiles
Why study Fashion and Textiles?
A-Level Design and Technology: Fashion and Textiles is a creative and thought-provoking qualification which gives students the practical skills, theoretical knowledge and confidence to succeed in a number of careers, especially those in the creative industries. Students will gain a real experience of what it means to be a designer, alongside the knowledge and skills sought by higher education and employers.
Students will have the opportunity to explore a range of textile media and techniques using a variety of equipment throughout the Design and Technology department. This includes CAD and CAM equipment such as specialist software, sewing machines and laser cutters.
The course is assessed through two exam units, worth 50% of the qualification and one coursework unit, which is also worth 50% of the qualification.
Educational visits have included: New Designers; The Clothes Show Live; the Victoria and Albert Museum and London Fashion Week.
Why our students like this course
“I like it as it is a very broad subject . . .”
I chose to study Textiles because I thoroughly enjoyed it as a GCSE and wanted to carry on with a creative subject at A-Level. I like it as it is a very broad subject that allows me to decide what I wish to base my project work on, as well as not restricting me and giving me the chance to develop my creative side. It gives me the opportunity to explore the aspects of Textiles that interest me the most!
No specific requirement
Where does this subject lead me?
The course leads to a range of degree level courses, such as, Fashion/Textiles Design/Marketing, Education, Fabric Technology, Retail, Illustration, and Theatre.
You can watch a series of videos on where Design can take you at icould.
For example university degree courses and careers leading from this subject click here.
Creative Industries: explore a wide selection of creative careers
Apprenticeship courses: Info on what an apprenticeship is and courses available
Fashion and Textiles FAQs
What skills and attributes do I need to have to be successful in A Level Fashion and Textiles?
To be successful in A Level Fashion and Textiles is it important to have a genuine passion for fashion and textile design and creativity. An open mind and willingness to listen and take advice will be a huge benefit as you move through the course.
Students studying A Fashion and Textiles are expected to be highly motivated and be able to work independently. As students progress through the course, they will become increasingly confident regarding the properties and applications of a range of textile materials and processes.
A high level of attendance and punctuality are essential to be successful in A Level Fashion and Textiles, which will mean additional work outside of timetabled lessons.
How A Level Fashion and Textiles structured?
- Paper 1: Technical Principles (Written Examination: 2 hours 30 minutes) – 30% of the Qualification
- Paper 2: Designing and Making Principles (Written Examination: 1 hours 30 minutes) – 20% of the Qualification
- Non-exam Assessment (NEA): Substantial Design and Make Project – 50% of the Qualification
During Year 12 students will learn about a range of textile materials and processes through workshops and mini design and make projects. The theory content of the course will also be covered throughout Year 12 and where relevant, link to the workshops and mini design and make projects.
Following the workshops and mini design and make projects, during Year 12 students will begin their final Substantial Design and Make Project which will continue throughout Year 13. Theory knowledge will continue to be reviewed and applied throughout Year 13.
What GCSE qualifications and grades do I need to do A Level Fashion and Textiles?
Ideally, students who select A level Fashion and Textiles will have a GCSE Design and Technology (preferably specialising in Fashion and Textiles) qualification (B or above). However, students who haven’t studied GCSE Design and Technology may select A Level Fashion and Textiles, providing they are committed to the course and have some equivalent experience that reflects their creative and practical interests.
Most importantly, students should enjoy the process of developing skills, ideas and understanding, together with the combination of practical, technical, creative, and contextual demands involved a practical subject which involves a lot of coursework. Students without GCSE Design and Technology should have some equivalent experience, that reflects their creative and practical interests.
What can A Level Fashion and Textiles lead to?
Successful A level Fashion and Textiles students can go on to study on a range of Fashion and Textiles foundation and degree courses at colleges and universities, including Norwich University of the Arts (NUA). At degree level students will train in their area of specialisation, before going on to become a Fashion Designer, Textile Designer or Illustrator, to name a few examples in a broad variety of specialist jobs and careers.
A Level Fashion and Textiles can also develop highly valuable transferable skills, including creative ideas development, problem-solving, contextual interpretation and visual communication, as well as organisational, presentation, and team-working skills.
How is A Level Fashion and Textiles assessed?
As described above, your A level mark is decided by two written examinations, Technical Principles and Designing and Making Principles, and a Substantial Design and Make Project. The Substantial Design and Make Project will be assessed by the subject teachers according to a detailed assessment criteria. This is then moderated by the exam board.
What equipment is needed for A Level Fashion and Textiles?
Most of the materials and equipment you will use will be available at school. However, it is important to have a stationary set that comprises of drawing a designing equipment.
Some essentials are:
- Drawing pencils
- Fine liners
- Coloured pens and pencils for design work
- Set squares
- Access to a sewing machine at home is desirable, though not essential to be successful at the course
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