Crumlin College fashion courses are the perfect accessory

Crumlin College fashion courses are the perfect accessory

THE fashion industry has changed dramatically in the digital age with access to global markets at the click of a button opening up a world of opportunity.

How to navigate a chaotic market whilst incorporating business skills is a key cornerstone at Crumlin College of Further Education, who have been running fashion courses for over 20 years.

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The college run Level 5 fashion courses in Buying and Merchandising, and Styling, and a Level 6 course in in Fashion Management.

Whereas the Fashion Buying and Merchandising course is geared towards the business side of the industry, Fashion Styling is very hands-on and prepares students for the practical side of fashion, including styling for photo shoots, said Tommy McNicholas, fashion tutor at Crumlin College.

“We very much invite students to a business model approach in our courses. All students do a 10-day work placement, some are lucky enough to be taken on by a buying office in Penney’s. Many students go on to progression at DIT’s. If you perform well, it opens up avenues and we have many success stories.

“Many of our fashion students progress on to diploma and degree courses in the IT’s and DIT’s. For Fashion Buying and Merchandsing, many students have progressed to studying visual communications at the DIT. For Fashion Styling students, a natural progression route is to study design at NCAD.”

Mr McNicholas says the courses appeal to students interested in fashion, but teaching both fashion and business nous is crucial to succeeding in the industry.

He continued: “There is a huge amount of work in the courses. There are 11 modules and three/four projects throughout the year. It’s very hands on but it is a creative process. We go into retail outlets and look at the whole business model, stock, how to sell it, what sells.

“The Fashion Buying and Merchandising prepares students for a career in a buying office, for high street stores or merchandising outlets. There is also potential for students to go on and own their own business.”

The digital age has “revolutionised” the fashion industry, according to Mr McNicholas.

“There has never been so much choice, exposure to images, and access to business opportunities online,” he said.

“Students need to be computer savvy, and there has been a big change in terms of design and fabrics.”

Smaller campuses like Crumlin College, offer additional benefits to students that bigger institutions may lack due to their sheer size.

Mr McNichloas continued: “Further Education is a great bridge to get you there. We find people who go through the FE sector are likely to progress as they understand the project briefs. FE is a viable option to develop where you are coming from. If you have a Leaving Cert or are over 25, it can be a great benefit.

“It’s a lot like a school setting in that we know students on a one-to-one basis. We have an Adult Education Centre to provide additional supports and training in things like computers.”

Courses in Crumlin College start in September, but they are accepting applications online now, and interviews start later this month.

Visit for further details.

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