About the Fashion & Textiles Programme
Fashion is the academic foundation from which form, identity and function unfold. The discipline deals first and foremost with creating garments that decode, reflect and provide commentary on the era in which they are created. The programme takes its departure point in individual and original research in regard to form, expression and material. This creates a space where ideas, experimentation, reflection and intuition can run wild in the constant slipstream of trends, which also represent fashion.
During their studies, students are instructed in draping, sewing techniques and pattern development to the extent necessary for developing and visualising design solutions. Form and materials are given a great deal of attention, and the students learn to develop entire collections in relation to target groups, materials and manufacturing facilities.
In the textiles area, students work with the classic textile disciplines of weaving, knitting and textile printing. To the same extent that it is about developing new design in the traditional design areas of fashion and interiors, it is now also about transforming textile values into new contexts and technologies. Digital tools have therefore become part of the education programme and are now considered as important as the analogue techniques. The textile discipline works extensively with the experience and sensuality found in the physical encounter between the user and the surface or product. With the textile designers' professional knowledge in tactility and development of surface design, an entirely new field of activity has opened where the textile designer's skills can be utilised in the development of surfaces of materials that are not necessarily yarn and fabric – for example, glass, steel and concrete.
Teaching at Design School Kolding can take many different forms, all according to the discipline, the specific content and the actual design discipline. You learn to work independently, in teams and on projects with your own and shared design assignments. Much of the teaching is practical and geared towards specific design projects, but you will also become acquainted with lectures, seminars and more theoretical processes.
Design School Kolding has a number of open labs/workshops which play an active role in the teaching. This is where students experiment with design and develop their own working methods.
At Design School Kolding we educate designers to become specialists within their field and to collaborate across fields. You will have joint courses in e.g. drawing, chromatology, design methodology, aesthetics and science studies. You will learn to communicate your competences and get a basic business understanding.
Central to the teaching at Design School Kolding is project work. Every year, the students complete a number of design projects, which are either set for them or of their own choosing. In connection with these projects, instruction is given in the specific design disciplines, techniques and theories.
Initially, the projects are relatively simple and clearly defined, becoming increasingly complex and cohesive as the programme progresses. The students complete the projects individually, in collaboration with other students on the same design programme, in interdisciplinary teams and/or in collaboration with companies.
In their project-related instruction, the teachers act both as teachers in the traditional sense and as personal advisers/mentors for individual students. The longer the students' course of study, the more responsibility they have for deriving the optimum benefit from the teaching, and the more they will see the teacher as a consultant and adviser.
Business collaborations and internships
During the course of their studies, there will be many opportunities for students to collaborate with companies as part of their education. Business collaborations provide students with the opportunity to work under conditions and with issues that actually exist in the design professional’s world. In other words, business collaboration can lend substance to a student’s CV which, after graduation, can help to ensure solid, academically relevant employment.
From the company’s viewpoint, a design student can provide the enterprise with new knowledge and inspiration, including fostering innovation and talent development.
At Design School Kolding, practical experience (internship) is an obligatory element of the BA programme. Internship is included because it works – students who participate have an easier time finding a job after they have completed their education. An internship is an ideal way for you as a student to learn about the industry or the area you dream of working in. You can also use the internship to establish contacts and network with people in the industry that may prove invaluable later.
Design School Kolding has a global outlook and we have outposts in both Brazil and China where you can work with local students and companies. The work is project-oriented and you will learn to work with global issues across cultural differences.
You will be able to participate in international masterclasses and camps in Kolding with students from leading international design schools.
At Design School Kolding you will experience a diverse setting with an international visiting faculty and international students.
Helle Graabæk (1962) holds a degree in textile design from Design School Kolding and a Master in Design from The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. She has worked as a self-employed textile designer for Kvadrat and others, and has been head teacher at Textiles and acting Head of the Department of Product Design at design School Kolding. Helle Graabæk has been Head of Textiles since 2014.