Case study

Textile designer — Hannah Dugdale

After studying textile design at the University of Leeds Hannah is now working as a designer and loves the creative side of her role

How did you get your job?

I saw an advertisement for my current role at Julian Charles but I was already in a textile design job. I wanted to do more so I applied for this job. I had a lot of experience from my previous roles and I think this showed my employer that I could do commercial designs and that I had an eye for colour and design.

What do you do day-to-day?

I do designs for bedding and curtains and so my work varies from embroidery and print design. As well as the bedding the business also designs cushions and accessories to go alongside it.

A lot of my day-to-day work is spent in front of a computer on AVA, which is a CAD software programme. This is where I create my designs and refine them based on feedback.

What are your career ambitions?

I'm really happy where I am and I want to progress in this line of work.

What do you enjoy about your job?

I love designing. I enjoy doing the research that goes into each design and discovering what is out there and thinking about what the trends will be.

I also love drawing and that's at the heart of all design.

What are the most challenging parts of your job?

You have to constantly be thinking about new designs. That's a positive but sometimes you'll be staring at a blank screen knowing that you have to make a design come to life. It's not easy sometimes when you have to do a certain number of designs per week, but that's part of the challenge.

What are the best things about working in this sector?

I love the fact that I work in a creative industry, which allows me to express myself.

Any advice for others who would like to get into this career?

Any advice for others who would like to get into this career?

I think in textile design you have to consider whether going to London is right for you, as if you're interested in fashion this could be the only route.

I'd say it's really important to get CAD experience but don't neglect the hand-drawn skills. In all industries it really helps to have work experience and that's true in textiles too.

I'd also suggest creating your own blog. If you don't feel that you'd be able to do that then you can look at sites like Pinterest, which allow you to create your own photo boards. You could add your own designs to those boards and start getting your work out there.

If you want to meet employers then LinkedIn is brilliant for getting in touch with them. You can also follow what they're up to so there's never an excuse for not knowing what they do.

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