This year BHSAD launches new BA (Hons) Design Crafts: Textiles programme that starts in September. The course leader Angus Colvin explained the specifics of the course and how it is different from fashion design.
«The new programme in textile design in Britanka aims to give the students the opportunity to find their path within the textile industry. If you look at the textile industry, it covers a massive area from fine art right through to textile product design.
The way we are building the course is to give students the ability to find their own path and to become the designer they want to be. We have students that want to become interior designers, that want to become fine artists or go more towards the technical end of textiles. So with the creativity side and the artistic side there will also be a stream where students are given the opportunity to use generative software in order to develop new constructive techniques in weaving, where students are given access to new software for print and for designing repeat patterns, so that may be in terms of wallpaper, wall coverings, and where students are given access to knitting, creating more constructive textiles.
So it’s an open field at the moment, and we don’t want to close students down and say — this is constructed textiles course, or this is a printed textiles course. We want to give students the ability to get a voice and say this is the designer I want to be and this is the path I want to follow. And we want to give them room to do that. And I think we are going to achieve it.
Textile design in the British context can be many things, but it is the design of a material. That material may be used for fashion, but you don’t necessarily go there and say, I’m going to create a garment. You may say, I want to express myself in this way through the medium of textiles, or you may say, I want to solve a problem and I will apply textiles in the solution of this problem. Or you may go in another direction and say, I want to create jewellery that is textiles. You have core skills that any designer will have if you are a textile designer, and you can approach any design problem with those skills. Because you are a textile designer it means you have a certain mindset that allows you to solve those problems in a certain way. So we should see very interesting design solutions coming out».