Our fashion department has been established for over 30 years where the current courses have been developed over time, always keeping up to date with industry standards to give our students the best experience and portfolio possible. We pride ourselves on offering a smaller intake of students, thus giving them the opportunity to work one-to-one with lecturers if needed. The department has a close-knit community across the different fashion classes, giving a real family feel.
Our fashion courses differ from others as we offer more specialised techniques such as tailoring and couture finishing’s. One of the key features of our Fashion Design course is the opportunity to design and manufacture menswear clothing.
Alongside our Design and Manufacture course, we now offer an HND in Fashion Business which teaches a variety of subject areas including buying, range planning, fashion forecasting and Journalism. We have a close relationship with GCU to make sure there is a linked progression path to their fashion business degree course.
Each year the students choose a different local charity to raise money for and the staff and students work hard to create different fundraising events throughout the year, ending with the fashion show, where we present the charity with all the money that has been raised.
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Listen to what our students have to say about studying at GKC
Textiles Manufacturing Management Graduate at Johnstons of Elgin
Ashley graduated from Glasgow Kelvin College with an HND in Fashion Production with Retail in 2013. Whilst studying towards her HND at GKC, Ashley was able to gain valuable experience of the technical aspects of the fashion industry including pattern construction, industrial garment manufacture, an in-depth knowledge of textiles as well as the importance of quality control. All of these skills are now vital in her current role as a Textiles Manufacturing Management Graduate.
After graduating from GKC Ashley gained the position of Garment Technologist with Wilsons: Design, Source and Supply where her duties included being involved in the garment from initial design brief right up to product delivery to the store. She was a constant direct contact to the factory's they worked with in Pakistan, China, India, Turkey and Bangladesh where she built on her knowledge of production processes and garment make up. She learned to work quickly and accurately within a high pressure environment, creating size specs, leading fit sessions on men’s, ladies and children’s wear, sealing garment and accessory samples from initial development samples through to bulk production, keeping within the regulations of current legislation for consumer protection, assessing fabrics, garment samples and test reports for all quality and safety issues (all in a typical days work!). Ashley worked very closely with the Designers and Buyers to ensure that the correct product was being manufactured and with the Merchandising team alongside the critical path, to ensure that everything was finalized on time... Fast fashion waits for no one!
Building from her experience with Wilsons, Ashley wanted to move to the luxury end of the market and went on to gain her current position as a Textiles Manufacturing Management Graduate with Johnston’s of Elgin. Her role involves working within the Quality department being the key contact for all Apparel cloth, Johnstons own brand and Interiors ranges in regards to quality. Which means passing and failing goods within the mill which requires a keen eye for detail but also an understanding of the customers’ expectations and a very commercial eye. She creates product specifications for products Johnstons sell and she deals with Test Houses to ensure the company’s products perform as well as expected - which involves her relaying this information to her colleagues where she exercises her experience and knowledge in garment and textile legal compliance and product performance. She is the CSR contact within the Quality dept. which involves ensuring Johnstons are operating in line with customer guidelines and expectations. Following products through the production process to ensure quality is not compromised. Carrying out route cause analysis on faulty goods to find out where the process went wrong and implementing changes to ensure it doesn’t happen again (which could include checking continuity cards from the Dye House, carrying out an ends and picks analysis or even just looking at how the product is handled during its manufacture process etc) and so much more, her job is very varied… One day she could be pulling samples to show to a customer and the next she could be organising a machinery move in the embroidery department, no two days are the same!
In the future Ashley plans to finish her graduate scheme with Johnstons and continue working within the Scottish fashion Industry to extend her skills and knowledge further
Head Buyer for Quiz Clothing
Samantha graduated from Glasgow Kelvin College with an HND in Fashion Production with Retail in 2012. Whilst studying towards her HND at GKC Samantha gained skills in the retail side of the fashion industry as well as technical aspects including pattern construction, industrial garment manufacture as well as the importance of quality control. All of these skills are now vital in her current role as Head Buyer.
After graduating from GKC Samantha went on to study Fashion Design at Heriot Watt University starting at 3rd year. This course focused heavily on both the creative and technical aspects of designing and creating collections. Having already gained in-depth pattern cutting/sewing as well as Photoshop/CAD skills in college, Samantha was confident working more independently at University and found herself ahead of her peer’s thanks to her experience at college. Samantha went on to finish university with a BA Honours degree in Fashions Design.
Shortly after graduating, Samantha gained a position as an Assistant Buyer for Accessories and Jewellery for Quiz at their head office in Glasgow. This role pulls many aspects from Samantha’s studies to the forefront from start to finish of the buying process with a big emphasis on how products are made and ensuring the quality of products are very high.
In the future Samantha plans to continue her career in buying and evolve her skills in order to work her way to the top!
Business Owner – Siobhan Mackenzie Kilts
Siobhan Mackenzie is a Multi Award-Winning Scottish Fashion Designer.
In 2014, just five days after graduating from Glasgow Kelvin College, Siobhan launched her self-named label. Whilst a student Siobhan undertook an internship with Scottish Kilt-Makers Glenisla, where she learned the art and skill of bespoke kilt making, thus inspiring her business idea.
She has collaborated with brands such as Barbour, Caorunn Gin and most recently Team Scotland for The Commonwealth Games in 2018.
Less than a year after graduating from Glasgow Kelvin College (Formerly North Glasgow College) Rory began working at Yves Saint Laurent, in Paris where he worked closely with Hedi Slimane over a four-year period.
The time and experience from Saint Laurent are what drove him to create his own self-named label which he now runs in Glasgow- showcasing his collections in London and Paris. For his brand he uses the mix of couture techniques he has picked up with high quality British craftsmanship. His aim is to create coherent pieces for men and women that can be worn for a lifetime.