BA (Hons) Design for Textiles (Fashion, Interior, Art)

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The course

UCAS code
4 years
Scottish Borders
Delivery type

This highly creative textiles course is designed to offer a balance between theory and practice – particularly when it comes to fabric design methodology and fabric production techniques.


Got questions about this programme?

Contact our enquiries team.


Learn practical and academic skills working with some of the finest printing, weaving and knitting facilities anywhere in the UK. Our studios and workshops provide a professional creative space, where you’ll benefit from the real hands-on learning opportunities that come with access to our industry-standard facilities, equipment and space.

This highly creative course covers fashion and furnishing fabrics, accessories, wall coverings, gallery pieces, greeting cards, gift wrap and stationery products. It aims to encourage independent learning and development towards your selected pathways in printed and constructed woven, printed and knitted textiles. The combination of general textile lectures with those covering innovation will boost your knowledge in both traditional and cutting-edge approaches. 

We place an emphasis on fabric making that responds to a brief. Many of the projects you’ll work on will involve recognised design studios and companies like leading colour forecast company Trend Bible and leading USA fabric producers Cotton Inc. Our students even have the opportunity to work with Old Navy to design prints for a specific sector, in a competition where the winner can secure a three-month paid placement in San Francisco as part of their internship scheme. 

The way the course underpins your design skills with technology and marketing expertise means you’ll develop the highly sought-after skillset that employers are looking for, particularly in the woven and knitted textile industry. Many of our graduates have gone on to work for companies in Scotland, UK and the USA, such as Abercrombie & Fitch, Paul Smith and Gap. 95% of our graduates reported in the National Student Survey that they were satisfied overall with their Design for Textiles degree. 

The course is taught in our Scottish Borders Campus, which sits close to the heart of Scotland’s luxury textile industry. This is your chance to study in an area that’s home to some of the UK’s top design and production facilities for textiles and fashion. Find out more about what this award-winning course has to offer on our School pages.

Course content

Year 1

Build a foundation for your future development with a combination of lectures and practical classes designed to help you choose your specialism. Practical projects in printed, woven and knitted textiles and CAD are underpinned by design development projects covering areas such as drawing, painting and material manipulation. We encourage you to explore sampling and mixing techniques to discover a wealth of fabric outcomes.

Semester 1

  • Rethinking Design 1: Discover and Define
  • Rethinking Design 2: Develop and Deliver

Semester 2

  • Textiles in Practice 1
  • Textiles 1

Year 2

Delve into original textile fabric creation beginning with sketchbook development and Commercial Studies for Design.  Explore a range of both fashion and interior textile projects for weave and knit in the first semester, followed by printed textile design from archive sources and digital design in the second semester. Attend London Design Week and you’ll have the opportunity to visit exhibitions and museums as a vital part of visual and market research. 

Semester 1

  • Sketchbook-Enquiry
  • Textiles in Practice 2 

Semester 2 

  • Textiles 2
  • Textiles in Practice 3 
  • Digital Technologies

Year 3

This year is outwardly focussed with Live external design briefs with induatry partners, national and international competitions and the option of credit bearing internships in the second semester. Continue on a pathway of knitted, woven or printed textile design, becoming experienced with innovative colour creation and relevant industry CAD programmes. During third year there’s a real emphasis on getting career ready, with a specific focus on developing your portfolio, so you’re ready to apply for industry internships over the summer period. Student exchanges are available this year, and there is normally a field trip to Paris to visit annual trade events. 

Semester 1

  • Future Textiles & Apparel
Optional Courses
  • Textiles in Practice 4: Knit
  • Textiles in Practice 4: Print
  • Textiles in Practice 4: Weave

Semester 2

  • Professional Practice For Design
  • Critical & Contextual Studies 3
Optional Courses
  • Textiles Industry Project: Knit
  • Textiles Industry Project: Print
  • Textiles Industry Project: Weave

Year 4

The focus of the honours year is a design project set by each student. You will have the skills to experiment and trial, then refine your textile design ideas into a highly original and expertly fabricated final outcome. Many final year students collaborate with industry partners to solve a real-world problem or examine a topical industry development.  

Semester 1

  • Honours Project 1
Optional Courses
  • CCS Essay
  • Marketing Strategy for Design

Semester 2 

  • Honours Project 2
  •  Advanced Practice and Evaluation 


Work and study

This is what our BA (Hons) Design for Textiles (Fashion, Interior, Art) students are doing 15 months after graduating:

  • 70% are working
  • 10% are studying
  • 10% are working and studying.


  • The average salary of students 15 months after graduating: £19000
  • The average UK salary of students 15 months after graduating from a similar course: £21000

Potential career paths

  • Design occupations
  • Information Technology Professionals
  • Artistic, literary and media occupations

Entry requirements

Year 1

Standard entry requirements

  • Highers ABBB (including English)
  • A-Levels BCC
  • Int. Baccalaureate 29 points
  • BTEC DMM (in a relevant area)

Minimum entry requirements*

  • Highers BBBC (including English)
  • A-Levels BCC

* Minimum: under our Fair Access Policy, we will relax our standard entry requirements for some Scottish students depending on their circumstances. Our minimum requirements will apply if you:

  • live in an area within the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation lowest 20% (SIMD20), or
  • are care experienced.

We can also make exceptions for some Scottish students with grades above minimum but below standard. Read more about our Minimum and standard entry requirements

Year 2

  • HNC B in graded unit (in a relevant HNC)
  • BTEC DMM (in relevant subject)

Level 2 entrants are specialists in printed, woven and knitted textiles.

Year 3

  • HND BB in graded unit (in relevant HND)

Level 3 entrants are specialists in printed, woven and knitted textiles. 

Additional information

Portfolio and interview

Selection is normally by application and submission of a portfolio, which should show your aptitude to textiles through use of colour, texture, rhythmic pattern-making and a logical design process. The ability to produce observational work in the form of both controlled and gestural drawing, painting and relief work should also be demonstrated. Our portfolio requirements are explained in the Digital Portfolio Guidelines.

Successful applicants will be asked to submit their digital portfolio and invited to discuss it at interview.

English language requirements

  • If English is not your first language, you have to show that your English is good enough to succeed on your course. Please see our English language requirements.


Tuition fees for 2024 entry
Status* Scotland England / Wales / N Ireland / Rep of Ireland International**
Fee Paid by SAAS £9,250 £18,704

* Your residency 'status' is usually defined as the country where you have been ordinarily resident for the three years before the start of your course. Find out more about tuition fees.

** 'International' includes applicants from European Union countries who do not hold Pre-Settled or Settled status in UK. (This does not include students from the Republic of Ireland - see above). Read more about the application process for EU nationals.

Additional costs

You may incur additional costs in the course of your studies at Heriot-Watt over and above tuition fees in an academic year. Depending on your programme of study, these may include: protective equipment, field trips, professional memberships, studio fees, required course texts or other study resources.

Please note that there is an additional consumable fee, charged per year of study.

Scholarships and bursaries

Featured scholarships

Bursaries for students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales

In addition to government loans and grants towards the costs of fees and living costs, we are offering generous financial support to attract and support eligible undergraduate students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales:

  • Heriot-Watt University Bursary (up to £3,100 per year)
View details about the Heriot-Watt University Bursary

View our full range of undergraduate scholarships.