www.dublindesign.ie   www.dublindesign.ie www.dublindesign.ie www.dublindesign.iewww.dublindesign.iewww.dublindesign.ie

Higher National Certificate in Fashion Design

Ágota Pfening Frankfurt Style Awards 2017 winner

Ágota Pfening, HNC Fashion Design, First Price winner of the Frankfurt Style Awards


Course Description

This course delivers a strong foundation in fashion design skills, and a keen awareness of the industry-based design process. Students develop a range of skills including visual research, concept development, presentation of design ideas, pattern drafting, toile manufacture and garment manufacture.

Students gradually build their confidence, moving towards establishing a distinctive personal design signature.

The course consists of lectures and studio sessions, and is assessed through project-based assignments and presentations.

Starting Dates & Format

Course Duration:

1 Year


Mode of Study:

Part Time Day

Now enrolling for September 2021.

Please see our Timetable & Fees page for starting dates.

Course Content

Introduction to Fashion Design Process:
Learn to carry out visual research and develop design sketchbooks, develop your drawing skills to produce final illustrations, and fabricate fashion design boards for presentation of your ideas, both manually and using industry-standard software.

Pattern Drafting:
Receive an introduction to pattern drafting and toile manufacture. As the year progresses, you will build upon these skills, creating patterns to implement your own design vision, and proceed to toile manufacture to finished garment manufacture.

Contextual and Cultural Studies:
Explore clothing and fashion design throughout the ages, and learn about contemporary influcences in fashion.

Trend Forecasting:
Carry out trend analysis, shop reports and customer profiling; providing a context for your fashion design projects.

Idea Generation:
Practice concept development skills, developing inspired, original ideas for fashion design, and practise communicating your ideas to colleagues.

Fashion Industry Communication Skills:
Learn the technical skills and knowledge involved in producing flat drawings (manually and using industry-standard software), industry specification sheets, and costing sheets, lay plans and range plans.


Upon successful completion of this course, students are awarded the BTEC Higher National Certificate in Fashion Design, which is equivalent to a Level 6 qualification on the Irish National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ).

BTEC is the largest accrediting body in the UK and BTEC qualifications are recognised globally.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of this course have secured employment in a wide range of industry roles, including Head Office positions in Primark, and store management positions with high street retailers such as River Island. Many graduates have gone on to set up their own successful businesses and sell their pieces/collections through Dublin city centre stores such as Om Diva, and leading online retail sites including etsy.com.

Many of our students and graduates have taken up prestigious internships in fashion companies in Ireland and abroad, including Primark, Zoe Jordan London, Katie Hanlan, Emma Manley, Fashion Hot House, Dublin Fashion Week and TV3..

Further Progression

On successful completion, students may progress into 2nd Year of the Higher National Diploma in Fashion Design programme at Dublin Institute of Design.

Entry Requirements

Student Testimonials

Deb Fanning HNC Fashion Designn

Last September I decided to go back to college to study Fashion Design in the Dublin Institute of Design. It’s been a real eye opener for me, a wonderful journey into the world of fashion and design.

In the first term, we learnt the creative process behind turning an idea into a collection. I found it to be extremely worthwhile as an exercise as well as a way to further creative focus. My theme was Electric Picnic, and from there the concepts I zoned in on were fireworks, lights, colour and of course a bit of sparkleI am currently in term two which finishes up this week.

In this term we were taught how to draw flat drawings, make range plans & pricing sheets for our garments. We learnt pattern drafting skills and made a skirt, bodice and trousers as part of our project. We also were given a project to create an outfit to enter into The Frankfurt Style Awards which was exciting! This time we will manufacture the outfit in term three, and at the end of the year we will showcase our finished design at the DID Fashion show.

I’d definitely recommend this course to anyone interested in fashion. It has really opened my eyes up to the world of fashion and design, in a special way! Although the course itself is intense at times – it really is worth the hard work and effort!

Debbie Fanning, HNC Fashion Design 2017

If you would like more information about this course, please fill the "Request more information" form above.

As numbers are limited for this course, pre-booking is essential.