Advice for Applicants

BA (Hons) Fashion Design and Technology

Advice for BA (Hons) Fashion Design and Technology Applicants

As part of the application process we may invite you to an interview and ask you to bring a portfolio of work with you. Below are some hints and tips on how to create a successful portfolio and prepare for your interview.

Preparing Your Portfolio

What is a portfolio?

A collection of drawings, images, documents, projects and/or garments that represent your work.

What should your portfolio contain?

A well-presented collection of work that is creative, imaginative and tailored to your chosen course.

This may include…

  1. Moodboards, sketchbooks, photographs and/or moving image that demonstrate what influences you and your work. We are interested in your personal aesthetic and how you pull visual imagery together. *Please ensure that you reference any work that is not your own, stating the source where possible.
  2. Evidence that you are interested in, and able to research, diverse aspects of contemporary culture – fashion, art, music, film, books, sport, photography, social/political issues etc.
  3. Sketchbooks and development work – evidence of how you develop ideas for fashion and/or other art projects.
  4. Analytical, observational drawings of garments, these can be simple drawings of garments that interest you because of their construction or history and/or more complex hand illustrations of clothes on bodies.
  5. Three-Dimensional work for example pattern cutting, modelling on a stand, finished garments or sculptural structures.
  6. An awareness of technology – the traditional and/or innovative materials and construction methods used in fashion and/or other design disciplines.

Note: This list is only indicative. We do not expect all applicants to have extensive experience in designing and/or making for fashion on entry. But we do expect a strong interest in fashion design and the associated manufacturing technologies.

Should I bring three dimensional objects?

Large three-dimensional objects should be displayed in your portfolio photographically. If you wish to bring an actual garment, and it is not too bulky, bring only your best piece.

What about digital work?

The portfolio must be a physical body of work, usually A3 or A2. Please capture any films or moving image as stills and provide a non-password protected URL.

What will staff be looking for in my portfolio?

A good range of work that demonstrates an interest in and aptitude for your subject area. We will be looking for potential in:

  1. Creative skills, such as drawing, working with materials, photography, film or writing.
  2. The use of primary and secondary research for the development of ideas and concepts.
  3. Engagement in, and knowledge of both fashion and contemporary culture.
  4. An awareness and interest in construction techniques for fashion.

How many pieces should my portfolio contain?

You don’t need to bring all of your work, just a good representative collection. Remember – you have to carry it to your interview! Put together your best work, take advice from tutors and edit and present the portfolio with care.

Interview Tips

Before your interview

Before you attend your interview, it is important to prepare. This could involve:

  1. Reading through and reminding yourself what you put on your application form.
  2. Looking through your portfolio and thinking about why you included those pieces of work – what inspired you, what research you did, etc. Perhaps you could talk through your portfolio with a friend or family member as this is something you might have to do at your interview.
  3. As well as finding out about your work and what inspires you, we might want to find out why you applied for your course and why you want to study at Manchester Fashion Institute.
  4. Be prepared and research the course you wish to study, but If you still have things you want to find out about the course or Manchester Fashion Institute, the interview is the perfect place to ask them. Make a note of any questions and take them with you.

Getting to your interview

There is nothing worse than getting lost and being late! Make sure you have found out the location of where you are going before the day of the interview and try to arrive a little bit early.

During the Interview

In the interview we are trying to get the best out of you, we’re not trying to catch you out! Try to remain relaxed and when you are asked a question take a moment to think about your answer. If you haven’t understood the question or don’t know the answer, don’t be afraid to say so. It is also important you leave the interview with all your questions answered.

After the interview

Decisions are based on all the information you provide, including your portfolio and application, so if you make a small mistake or say something that you think afterwards was a bit daft, don’t worry, these are only small aspects that won’t affect our decision or lessen your chances.

We look forward to meeting you.