Top 10 Online Fashion Courses to Break Into the Fashion Industry

Thanks to online fashion courses, it’s no longer necessary to go down the traditional university route or apply for art college if you want to learn about the fashion industry and gain design qualifications.

Today fashion education is accessible to everyone and there are many online fashion courses you can sign up for, whether you already work in the fashion industry, you’re a current student and you want to extend your knowledge and skills, or you’re just an enthusiastic beginner.

Online courses give you more opportunities to work at your own pace, watch lectures online, communicate with tutors via chat and video messaging, interact with your peers in the virtual classroom and submit assignments online. You can study from anywhere in the world and fit your study around work and family commitments easily, whether it’s toward fashion merchandising degrees or a degree in international business.

Some of the best fashion colleges in the world are now offering their courses to online students. Here are some of the best courses to get you started.


1. Essential Guide to the Fashion Business – London College of Fashion

The London College of Fashion runs several short fashion courses online and this one is a good all-rounder, great as an introduction to the fashion industry and for those looking for a general course to get started with.

The course is run by Alison Lowe, who provides marketing and PR services for several fashion designers and creative brands, and consultancy expert Toby Meadows. The content of the course covers the basics of fashion design and manufacturing, explores how marketing and PR fit into the industry, and looks into potential career routes.

Duration: 2 days

Price: £225


2. Business of Fashion Short Courses

The Business of Fashion has a great portfolio of educational resources, including short courses in buying and merchandising, fashion history and digital marketing. BoF has called in the big guns to grow it’s learning platform, including VOGUE styling legend Lucinda Chambers and Colin McDowell MBE. Upon completion of your chosen course you will receive a certificate of achievement.

Duration: 10-11 hours

Timetable: Study at your own pace


3. Womenswear Design Course – Milan Fashion Campus

If you’re after a crash course in fashion design and illustration for womenswear, this self-study course by Milan Fashion Campus could fit the bill. You’ll learn how to draw the figure for fashion design including hand-colouring, how to design dresses, trousers, tops, denim, and more, market research, choosing fabrics, and collection planning.

Duration: Study at your own pace

Timetable: Study at your own pace

Price: €700


4. Fashion and Sustainability: Understanding Luxury Fashion in a Changing World – London College of Fashion

If you’re interested in sustainable and ethical fashion, this online course offers an excellent introduction and has been created in collaboration with industry heavyweights Kering. The course explores the planetary and human cost of the fashion industry, and explores the impact of sourcing materials, how to choose low-impact tools and methods for production, and creative approaches to sustainable fashion design.

Duration: 6 weeks

Timetable: 3 hours per week

Price: Free


5. Fashion Manufacturing – London College of Fashion

Whether you’re looking to build your own brand or simply understand the essential mechanics of the fashion industry better, this beginner course will give you an excellent grounding in manufacturing for fashion and how to cost and manage basic production. You’ll look at codes of conduct between suppliers and brands, fabric selection and testing, and the importance of accurate forecasting.

Duration: 6 weeks

Price: £465

6. Fashion Journalism – London College of Fashion

This fashion journalism course is aimed at beginners and covers the history of fashion and lifestyle publishing, how to write fashion news, working with PRs, interview tips, spotting trends, feature writing, and pitching to editors. It’s ideal for those looking to improve their writing technique and build a career in fashion writing.

Duration: 3 weeks

Price: £400


7. Understanding Fashion: From Business to Culture

Brought to you by the prestigious Institut Français de la Mode, this course takes an almost philosophical approach to understanding fashion and is perfect if you’re hungry for a little intellectual debate. One of the highlights is contributions from the great and the good in fashion, including Simon Jacquemus and Paul Smith.

Duration: 4 weeks

Timetable: 3 hours per week

Price: Free


8. Lingerie and Swimwear Design Course – Milan Fashion Campus

Designing lingerie and swimwear requires different technical skills than general womenswear designing. This self-study e-book produced by Milan Fashion Campus includes directions on creating anatomical sketches with software including Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, creating mood boards and collections. This course does not include the technicalities of cutting patterns and is suited to people who already have some experience with fashion design

Duration: Work at your own pace

Timetable: Work at your own pace

Price: € 50


9. A History of Royal Fashion – University of Glasgow

Are you interested in fashion history? This course by the University of Glasgow, will take you through the wardrobes of five royal dynasties including the Tudors, the Stuarts, the Georgians, the Victorians, and the Windsors. You’ll learn how their outfits were designed to project power and control and how royal fashion influences trends.

Duration: 4 weeks

Timetable: 5 hours per week

Price: Free


10. Fashion Buying and Merchandising – London College of Fashion

This course will give you an insight into fashion industry practices, including who influences the fashions that are sold in retail stores and the roles of fashion buyers and merchandisers. You’ll cover trend predictions, visiting trade shows and fashion shows, and shopping skills. For those who are interested in continuing their studies, there are also more specialised courses in buying techniques, merchandising for luxury brands, for online retail, and for handbags and accessories.

Duration: 7 weeks

Price: £260


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