Case study

Louise Williams — MA Design: Fashion and Textiles student

Employer
Bath Spa University
louise williams

Studying at Bath Spa University has given Louise the opportunity to develop her embroidery skills to a professional level

Why did you choose this institution and course?

I chose to study at Bath Spa University as I wanted to explore my love of pattern and print further, building on what I had begun investigating during my degree. After my degree I trained and worked as an art and design technology teacher. While teaching, my desire to return to study and explore a career in design continued to grow.

Bath Spa appealed to me as I didn't feel it had a 'house' style - the work being produced by the graduates of the course was varied and of a high quality.

What does the course involve?

The course helps facilitate a really wide range of interests and skillsets. The facilities include equipment and resources for print, knit, weave, embroidery, photography and mixed media. The knowledge of the tutors and technicians is invaluable and they are very friendly.

Studying at postgraduate level has given me the frameworks to identify and explore what the market is for my work. The two marketing modules really helped me to learn to be strategic and to design with a viable market in mind.

The input from different visiting lecturers allowed me to glean helpful critique and advice from professionals who have years of relevant market and creative insight.

The course has enabled me to develop embroidery skills to a professional level. I arrived with limited experience in embroidery and I have learnt software that has enabled me to enter the world of digital embroidery.

What are your plans for after graduation?

I was very honoured to be nominated by Bath Spa for Texprint, a programme that acts as a career platform for graduates. From over 200 students interviewed, I was selected to be one of 24 graduate designers. As a result I have been involved in the London Texprint week and will be exhibiting and selling my work in the textiles trade show Premiere Vision in Paris as part of the 'Texprint Village', Premiere Vision Designs.

My plans are to establish myself as an embroidery designer, selling primarily to the fashion market. I plan to continue working within the field of education on a part-time basis as a tutor. I would also like to work with colleges and universities as a lecturer.

What advice would you give to those considering the course?

Studying at postgraduate level provides the opportunity to give focused time to develop skills and knowledge in a supported environment. The resources, teaching and opportunities provided by the university enabled me to develop as a designer and to be prepared to strategically engage in the world of design in a professional capacity.

My advice to anyone considering the course would be to make the most of the facilities and to embrace the knowledge and skills from both staff and peers. Also, it is important to enjoy having the opportunity to have time that is dedicated to your creative and professional development.

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