What is Fashion Design?

Fashion design is the art of planning and creating new styles of clothing and accessories, often inspired by nature, culture and social trends. This requires an in-depth knowledge of a broad range of elements, from colour and fabrics to patternmaking and design as well as a natural ability to anticipate changes in taste and style.

Fashion Design in Australia

While Australia’s fashion industry is relatively small compared to many other international markets, it has quickly developed a reputation as a vibrant up-and-comer in the world of fashion.

There are just over 10,000 fashion designers working throughout Australia, most of whom are employed in major cities such as Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, and the luxury retail market on its own is now worth more than $2 billion annually.

The average work week for a fashion designer in Australia is 40 hours long with the average salary averaging $56,610 and the age of most being around 35 years old. Australia’s fashion industry is also highly educated, with 79% of fashion designers having completed a diploma level qualification or higher.

Fashion Design Courses

Whether you want to learn how to make your own clothes, have your heart set on a career as a dressmaker, or dream of taking the world by storm with your own designs, a little training can go a long way and you’ll be given all the knowledge and skills you need through a fashion course at TAFE.


Certificate level courses provide a fantastic introduction to the industry and will equip you with the theory, knowledge and practical skills you need to pursue your goals with confidence. A Certificate in Fashion Design or a Certificate in Dressmaking and Pattern Cutting are a great way to get you started in this industry, and will allow you to be designing and creating your own clothing under a supervisor in no time! Most programs can be completed in 12-24 months and graduates will emerge ready to step into entry-level roles such as assistant pattern maker or fashion design assistant.


Those looking to advance their career prospects in a hurry will benefit from one of the many diploma level courses on offer, as they go into far greater detail of elements such as fabrics, design and technology. Diploma courses can usually be completed in two or so years and include both in-class and online study options. If you’d like to work for one of the industry’s larger and more influential fashion companies, investing in a bachelor degree is a great way to stand out from the crowd. Apart from getting a solid foundation in the most important fashion basics, you’ll have the opportunity to develop your own designs under the guidance of an industry expert.

Studying fashion comes with plenty of advantages, as not only are the fashion courses taught by skilled and knowledgeable professionals, but you’ll enjoy full access to a wide range of support along the way. Each course has also been designed per the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF), so whether you take a dressmaking course in Melbourne, a pattern-making course in Brisbane or study fashion online, your credentials will be widely recognised.

The Future of Fashion Design

With an increasing number of Australian designs now being seen on red carpets all over the world, prospects for our fashion industry have never been brighter. In fact, according to Australian government data, as many as 13,000 fashion designers are expected to be working across the country by 2020.

The three biggest trends impacting fashion right now are technology, sustainability and socially responsible practices; so designers with a mind for these increasingly important aspects can expect to do well. Modern men have also continued to invest far more time, effort and resources into their clothing and accessories – thus, fashion for men is booming – and crowdfunding is making it easier than ever to start your own fashion business.

Is a Career in Fashion Design Right for You?

The world of fashion certainly isn’t for everyone, as this is an extremely competitive industry where only the most talented and persistent succeed; however, those not afraid to try something new can find all manners of success.

You need to have an eye for detail, an ability to deal with a wide variety of people and be someone who thrives under pressure, as well as be willing to continually sharpen your skills and develop your knowledge. This is also a profession where you must be just as good at following direction as you are at taking initiative. Staying up to date with the latest trends is naturally a large aspect of the job description too.

So, are you ready to flex those design muscles of yours and take your fashion skills to a whole new level? If so, you’ve come to the right place, because here you’ll find courses to suit everyone from amateur fashionistas to budding design professionals.