The fashion industry is very competitive, and that’s why only the best make it. Creativity, passion, discipline and courage will help a lot, but you also need solid knowledge and design skills to become a great fashion designer.
That’s where fashion design schools come in. Studying at an institution with an established background in the fashion and design industry will allow you to develop your skills and learn from professors and other people who have many years of hands-on experience and insights.
To make things easier, we’ve looked at international rankings and listed the best fashion design schools based on the four fashion capitals of the world: New York (US), London (UK), Milan (Italy), and Paris (France):
Best fashion design schools in the US
The United States gave the world some of the most famous fashion designers, like Calvin Klein, Vera Wang, Betsey Johnson, Ralph Lauren, Donna Karan, and Michael Kors. Its fashion capital, New York City, is one of the most influential centres in the fashion industry. The US is also known for the New York Fashion Week, which is one of the most popular fashion events in the world.
If you want to study Fashion Design in the US, you can do it at some of the best fashion schools in the world, such as:
- Fashion Institute of Technology, New York
- Parsons: Fashion, Art and Design School, New York
- Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, Philadelphia
- Stephens College, Columbia
- Kent State University, Ohio
Best fashion design schools in the UK
If the US isn’t your favourite cup of tea, you can always study Fashion Design in the UK – the home of world-renowned fashion designers, such as Vivienne Westwood, Stella McCartney, Alexander McQueen, and Mary Quant.
The UK is represented by London, one of the four major fashion capitals in the world. London enjoys this status thanks to the technological advancements and the creativity displayed by the British fashion designers.
In the UK, you’ll also find the British Fashion Council (BFC), an NGO which organises fashion events that allow up-and-coming designers to reveal their latest creations and designs. You can also be present at the London Fashion Week, one of the most important events in the fashion world.
These are some of the top fashion design schools in the UK:
- London College of Fashion, London
- Central Saint Martins, London
- Royal College of Art, London
- Manchester School of Art, Manchester
- University of Westminster, London
Best fashion design schools in Italy
Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, Donatella and Gianni Versace, Giorgio Armani, Miuccia Prada, do we need to say more? You can study in Milan, a fashion capital with a long history in the design, fashion and production industries. Milan is also a very stable and thriving economic and industrial power.
Italy also hosts some of the biggest fashion events which take place every year, such as Pitti Immagine Uomo and Milan Men’s and Women’s Fashion Week. If you want to study Fashion Design in Italy, these are some of the best fashion schools you can choose:
- Istituto Marangoni International, Milan
- Polimoda, Florence
- Istituto Europeo di Design, Milan
- Koefia Academy, Rome
- Accademia Costume e Moda, Rome
Best fashion design schools in France
Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, Christian Lacroix, and Hubert de Givenchy are some of the most influential fashion designers from France. The Hexagon is regarded as a country where fine taste is always appreciated in fields like art, food, and, of course, fashion. You can study in Paris, which is a fashion capital thanks to its reputation, numerous fashion shows and the ability to attract a large number of aspiring fashion designers.
Twice a year, fashion lovers can also enjoy the Paris Fashion Week, one of the most appreciated and eagerly anticipated fashion shows worldwide. You can study Fashion Design in France at some of the best fashion design schools:
- ESMOD International, Paris
- Institut Francais de la Mode, Paris
- L’IFM Ecole de mode IFM Paris, Paris
- Studio Berçot, Paris
- Paris College of Art, Paris
We also recommend checking out these universities that offer Fashion Design degrees:
We’ve used international university rankings to group the best fashion design schools based on the four fashion capitals in the world. But that doesn’t mean academic institutions from other countries don’t offer high-quality Fashion degrees.
Below, you’ll find the rankings we’ve used so you can discover other top universities and colleges for Fashion studies:
Best fashion design schools in the world – CEOWORLD Magazine Ranking
To create their ranking, CEOWORLD Magazine look at factors like the academic experience, admission eligibility, job placement rate, feedback from recruiters, international reputation, and others.
- Fashion Institute of Technology, US
- London College of Fashion, UK
- Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, US
- School of Arts, Design and Architecture, Finland
- Central Saint Martins, UK
- Parsons: Fashion, Art and Design School, US
- Istituto Marangoni International, Italy
- Bunka Fashion College, Japan
- National Institute of Fashion Technology, India
- Savannah College of Art and Design, US
View the full ranking on the official CEOWORLD website.
Best fashion design schools in the world – Business of Fashion Ranking
Business of Fashion (BoF) release their rankings annually. The main criteria used to evaluate universities and colleges are global influence, learning experience, and long-term value. BoF gather data using student surveys, feedback from employers and other industry-related professionals, as well as input from experts on fashion education and industry.
- Aalto University: School of Arts, Design & Architecture, Finland
- Accademia Costume & Moda, Italy
- Bunka Fashion Graduate University, Japan
- Central Saint Martins, UK
- Domus Academy, Italy
- Donghua University, China
- Drexel University, US
- ESMOD International, France
- Institut Francais de la Mode, France
- Istituto Marangoni, Italy
See the complete BoF graduate fashion ranking.
You can also view the BoF undergraduate fashion ranking.