This week our MSc International Fashion Marketing students took the ‘high road’ to the Scottish Highlands to discover the coalface of Scottish fashion and textiles with visits to Speyside’s Knockando Woolmill and Perthshire’s House of Bruar.

Led by ex-Super model and now director & founder of the Edinburgh International Fashion Festival, Anna Freemantle-Zee, and Heriot-Watt’s Associate Professor in Marketing, Elaine Collinson, this trip formed a fundamental part of Heriot-Watt’s International Fashion Marketing course.

The group of 25 fashion-loving students from all over the world were welcomed to Knockando Woolmill with a presentation from Lady Nicola Irwin, Chairperson of the Knockando Woolmill board.

They enjoyed lunch in the woolmill’s visitor café before splitting into two groups to take part in the afternoon’s activities. The first group of Fashion Marketing students heard from Emma Nicholson, Knockando Woolmill’s Merchandising and Marketing Manager, who spoke about brand and its distinct history.

Emma told the students about the Knockando Woolmill Trust, explaining how it was established in 2000 with national lottery funding for the mills restoration and outlining the trust’s aims and values and their direct link to Moray and the surrounding areas. The historic site of Knockando Mill, which is the oldest working mill in Europe, provided the perfect setting for the group to engage with the vibrant textile industry still thriving in Scotland.

Emma and Nicola of Knockando Woolmill then held a focus group with the students to gauge their well-informed feedback on their recently launched website. The students, who are coming to the end of their first semester on our Masters in Fashion Marketing, shared their assessment of its usability, its look and feel and their perceptions of the brand.

During this, a second group of students were offered a fully guided tour of the working mill with the Production Manager who was excellent at showcasing the traditional tools, skills and machinery utilised and maintained by the mill.

Find out more about Knockando Woolmill and check out their brand new website here:

The second leg of the trip saw the group head to the House of Bruar. Set in the heart of Scotland, Perthshire, the House of Bruar is a destination in its own right and presents a snapshot of Scotland’s thriving fashion and food & drink industries.

Branded as the UKs leading Scottish Country Clothing specialist, this shopping mecca sells high quality goods from all over Scotland including Heritage tweeds, cashmere and brands such as Musto, Barbour and Aigle.

The students visited House of Bruar to observe the way its different shops are visually merchandised using textiles, props and layout. They gained insight into fashion branding representation in retail and had the chance to break for lunch in the foodhall before indulging in a spot of pre-christmas shopping!

Find out more about our MSc in Fashion Marketing by click the link below