Deciding on a career in fashion design is not easy, but the difficulty is finding the right school from many fashion designing colleges in the world is the first step in that direction.
When most people want to be an engineer, doctors, or lawyers, getting the right fashion program and college is a little more difficult, as it’s a path not often taken career-wise.
There are many top fashion designing colleges in the world such as the Fashion Institute of Technology, Parsons, New School of Design, Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, and so on.
With this in mind and to support applicants, here is a list of the 10 best fashion designing colleges in the world. Check out the details for each before deciding which top fashion school you want to enroll in.
1. Fashion Institute of Technology, New York
New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) is one of the best fashion designing colleges in the world and a hub for fashion, business, design, marketing, and technology. It is part of the State University of New York (SUNY) and offers programs related to the fashion industry.
As part of the largest comprehensive university system in the United States, the institute boasts excellent network access to industries and platforms around the world.
They provide students with hands-on learning opportunities and an unmatched faculty of industry experts.
FIT’s strategic location, New York, is one of the world’s top four fashion capitals, giving students an advantage. FIT alumni include world-renowned designers Calvin Klein and Michael Kors.
FIT’s three Academic Schools, Graduate Schools, Continuing Education, and Professional Research Centers offer a variety of competitive programs to suit your interests, including Business in Fashion and Pure Fashion Studies.
- FIT’s most popular programs include BS and MS in Cosmetics and Fragrances Marketing and Management,
- An Associate in Applied Sciences (AAS),
- BFA and MFA in Fashion Design,
- AAS and BS in Fashion Business Management,
- A Specialization in Global Fashion Management.
Tuition Fees: Total tuition fees for AAS and BS programs range from $35,000 to $45,000 per year, and full-time graduate programs are estimated to cost about $13,000 per semester.
2. Parsons, New School of Design, New York
Parsons School of Design in New York is a private art and design school that is often ranked among the best fashion designing colleges in the world. The school’s location and innovative curriculum enable students to develop their skills and knowledge by working with peers, industry partners, and communities around the world.
- Parsons offers bachelor’s, master’s, and associate’s degrees (AAS),
- Online, and summer programs in a variety of disciplines, including fashion, design management, design studies, media, and studio design.
When studying fashion, you can choose from a variety of courses to support your qualifications and career plans. MPS Fashion Management and MA Fashion Research.
Tuition Fees: Tuition fees are the same for international and domestic students and range from $20,000 to $30,000 per semester. All students who apply to Parsons are automatically eligible for merit-based scholarships upon application.
3. Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, London
Central Saint Martins or CSM is a leading public art college in London, one of the world’s most stylish cities and the ‘big four’ fashion capital.
CSM, a constituent college of the University of the Arts London, offers a variety of full-time undergraduate and postgraduate courses in areas such as theater, fashion, art, higher education, and spatial practice in architecture and interior design.
The school’s undergraduate and postgraduate fashion programs are consistently ranked in the top 10 in many academic rankings, including Business of Fashion, QS Rankings, and Times Higher Education making it one of the finest fashion designing colleges in the world. CSM has developed a program for fashion aspirants of all levels.
- Popular fashion programs include BA (Hons) in Fashion,
- Fashion Design and Knitwear,
- BA (Hons) in Fashion,
- Fashion Design and Marketing,
- BA (Hons) in Fashion Communication,
- Fashion Journalism,
- MA in Fashion, and MA in Fashion Communication.
If you’re interested in a short-term graduate-level program, you can consider its one-year Graduate Diploma in Fashion.
Tuition Fees: Tuition fee at Bachelor’s level ranges from 37,258 USD to 40,933 USD. Similarly, the fee for a Master’s degree ranges from 16,961 USD to 71,690 USD.
4. London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London
Another top fashion college within the University of the Arts London, London College Fashion (LCF) is the only college in the UK dedicated to fashion education, consulting, and research putting it on the list of the best fashion designing colleges in the world.
The college offers a number of undergraduate, graduate, and short degree programs ranging from fashion business to fashion curation and has produced famous designers such as shoe designer Jimmy Choo and fashion designer William Tempest.
LCF includes a unique semester study abroad program to Paris to learn more about fashion and culture. If you’re fresh out of college and want to pursue a prestigious bachelor’s degree, there are many bachelor’s degrees in areas such as:
- Fashion psychology,
- Fashion hair and makeup,
- Fashion sportswear,
- Fashion journalism, and integration.
- You can consider any of the master’s degree programs as well.
If you have a degree and want to expand your skills or change careers,
- You can apply for LCF like MA in Fashion
- Design Technology Menswear and Womenswear,
- MA in Fashion Retail Management,
- Executive MBA in Fashion, LCF MBA, or Diploma.
Prospective students should review program-specific admission requirements before applying. International students can also contact LCF’s international contacts for more personalized advice.
Tuition Fees: Tuition fees are the same for international and domestic students and range from $15,000 to $25,000 per year.
5. Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture, Aalto University, Finland
The Aalto University Faculty of Art, Design, and Architecture in Finland is a prestigious fashion school, if you are interested in creating your own collections and are interested in Nordic and Scandinavian fashion, commonly known as Scandi fashion.
The university offers degree programs in design and architecture that are perfect for those who wish to pursue these fields further.
Known for its world-class industry collaborations, research activities, and challenging programs, the school’s academic programs are offered through five departments. Fashion aspirants can look at the layout, style, co-layout, layout leadership, or sustainable development.
- At the Bachelor level, you can choose the Aalto Bachelor Program in Design, Fashion, or Design.
- At the Master’s level, you can choose between Collaborative and Industrial Design Fashion, Clothing and Textiles Design, or a contemporary design program.
The program is designed to help students develop strategic thinking and research skills as well as artistic skills. In addition, Aalto’s own fashion/textile futures research group explores human-centered design research.
The estimated tuition fee for the Bachelor’s program is €12,000 per year and for the Master’s program €15,000 per year for international and non-EEA citizens. Citizens of member states of the European Union (EU) or the European Economic Area (EEA) do not have to pay tuition fees to study. Scholarships are also available for excellent candidates. Applicants should check the website for admission requirements and deadlines before applying.
6. ESMOD International, Paris
Ecole Superieur des Arts et Technique de la Mode (ESMOD) is a highly renowned private French fashion school based in Paris for over 173 years.
ESMOD has a network of 5 schools across France and 20 schools in over 13 countries including Dubai, Istanbul, Beijing, and Tokyo. The faculty gives numerous applications in style layout (ESMOD) and style business (ISEM).
Among the many programs to choose from are
- Undergraduate Courses in Fashion Design and Economics, Fashion Designer,
- Undergraduate, Diploma in Postgraduate Programs – Creative Director,
- MBA Short Course in Pattern Making, and Fashion Shop.
- If you’re a fashion company or fashion designer third-year student, you can secure an internship or employment with fashion giants Chanel or Hermès, whose headquarters are located near campus.
ESMOD and ISEM’s extensive alumni and industry networks provide career support and placement for students. Interested candidates should review program-specific admission requirements.
Tuition Fees: The estimated tuition fee extends to USD 11,000 – $14,000 per year.
7. Polimoda, Florence, Italy
Polimoda is a private fashion school in the beautiful city of Florence, Italy, ranked in the top 20 of major fashion rankings. The school offers various programs at the Bachelor’s and Master’s levels.
In addition, it offers a variety of programs for each season, such as autumn, winter, spring, and summer. The program is mainly divided into four departments: fashion design, fashion business, art direction, and design management.
- At the undergraduate level, you can find attractive programs such as Fashion Technology, Leather Technology, Fashion Art Direction, and Fashion Design Management.
- At the master level, you have even more options in knitwear design, bag design, fashion merchandising and buying, fashion trend forecasting, and creative direction.
- Seasonal programs include Bespoke Fashion, Fashion Photography, Fashion Jewelry, Sustainable Fashion, Luxury Design Management, and more.
Polimoda’s undergraduate course is three years, and the master’s course is nine months. Seasonal Short Programs are one month in length. The programs are state-of-the-art and led by industry experts and international guest lecturers. Students can participate in fashion shows, museum tours, and internship opportunities.
Tuition Fees: The estimated tuition fee starts from 18000.00 € / year.
8. Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Antwerp
The prestigious Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp, Belgium, is one of the oldest in Europe. The school offers programs ranging from sculpture and spatial art to sound design.
- Bachelor’s and Master’s degree courses in Fashion Design specialize in theoretical courses such as graphics, tailoring, pattern design, world literature, art history, and cultural studies.
Final-year master’s students are given complete freedom to create a comprehensive graduation collection based on inspiration from their favorite artists, celebrities, or social issues.
The school focuses on balanced development, which is essential for a successful fashion designer. Popular programs include Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Visual Arts – Costume Design and Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Fine Arts – Fashion. The institute conducts entrance examinations for most of its programs.
9. Istituto Europeo di Design, Milan
Based in Milan, one of the world’s four major fashion cities, IED or Istituto Europeo di Design also has a presence in Spain and Brazil.
It offers major programs in design, fashion, visual communication, and management in multiple languages (English, available in Italian); Spanish, and Portuguese.
- IED offers bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees, summer and winter short courses, and advanced programs.
- Popular courses include short-term programs such as Fashion Design, Visual Communication – Fashion Printing, Fashion Trend Research, Fashion Marketing, Fashion Design Summer Kids, and Beachwear Design, depending on the field you wish to specialize in.
The program is taught by industry experts and an international faculty. The location of IED’s main campus in Milan simply adds a ‘vitality’ factor that allows students to visualize, develop and create outstanding works in the heart of fashion, art, and culture.
To begin the admissions process, a candidate must visit the website of IED and contact the admissions office through the website for the relevant course. Admissions consultants typically send you forms, required brochures, credentials, and fee information before beginning the online application process.
10. Bunka Gakuen, Tokyo
Bunka Gakuen University’s fashion school in Tokyo is one of the highest-ranked fashion schools in Asia and one of the most prestigious fashion schools in the world.
Studying in Tokyo, one of the world’s top 10 fashion cities, means you’ll have access to the best of East and West, Tokyo’s new generation of avant-garde designers, the region’s contemporary art styles, and more.
Bunka Gakuen’s fashion courses are offered by Bunka Fashion College and Bunka Fashion Graduate University.
Programs offered range from fashion design to fashion technology research and creation.
Bunka Fashion College’s undergraduate program is divided into four departments:
- Fashion Creation,
- Fashion Technology,
- Fashion Marketing and Sales,
- Fashion Accessories, and Textiles.
Learning design includes expertise in every aspect of the industry. It will help you learn technical skills and understand the sector yourself.
This includes its history, developments, current issues, manufacturing trends, ethical sourcing, distribution, and more. It can be a good option as your undergraduate major after plus two or high school.
Due to the specialization of most universities, some of the universities mentioned in this article may not be included in the QS World University Rankings, which ranks institutions offering multiple specializations. However, they enjoy an excellent reputation in the industry.