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Fashion School Q&A: Marbella Design Academy

By FashionUnited

Jun 14, 2022


The Marbella Design Academy campus. Image courtesy of the school.

How is everything going at Marbella Design Academy? Are the physical classes back?

Our students have continued working safely thanks to our location, building of approximately 2000 square metres, and spacious fashion studios.

Over the last academic year, Marbella Design Academy has kept all classes in physical format, allowing students to access the workshops and use all the facilities. Students have received direct attention from teachers and technicians and have been able to continue to develop all their academic projects, uninterrupted by the pandemic.

Not only did our 2nd and 3rd-year students produce and present their final collections, but we could also celebrate a Fashion graduation reception at Marbella Design Academy, along with a fashion catwalk organised by our great team of Fashion tutors.

We are also very pleased to say that some of our recent graduates have been selected as finalists in Spanish Fashion competitions, such as the Young Andalusian Talents Contest and the Costa de Almeria Fashion week. Some have also been published in renowned design magazines.

Some members of this class are already working for well-known international fashion brands or have created their own studios.

How would you describe the student community at Marbella Design Academy?

Our students are a part of a cosmopolitan group of students from more than 56 different nationalities across the various design departments. International settings are a great way to broaden your horizons and foster skill transfer between students and departments.

Due to the school size, the students all know each other, regardless of which department or year they study in, and the atmosphere can be described as friendly and ‘family-like’.

What kind of courses does Marbella Design Academy offer? What is the focus area?

Our BA in Fashion Design and Manufacture, as well as our other BA (Hons) programmes, is validated and awarded by our UK partner, the University of Bedfordshire, and taught at Marbella Design Academy in Spain.

The course is based on a global vision and understanding of fashion design and a philosophy that embraces fundamental sustainability principles, integrity, and contemporary relevance. The programme philosophy considers Fashion Design from a global knowledge vision to prepare the upcoming fashion designers.

It takes the students through the process of design development, conceptual thinking, intellectual flexibility, and garment creation, whilst applying digital resources, innovation and sustainable methods and ensuring an organic learning process.

Fashion students learn how to anticipate aesthetic and social change, style and shape the future of fashion, which will lead to new aesthetics and responses to practice in the fashion industry.

The catwalk show of Marbella Design Academy student Rana Ekwass. Image courtesy of the school.
The catwalk show of Marbella Design Academy student Femmie Diaz. Image courtesy of the school.

Marbella Design Academy is a unique exclusive international design school in Southern Spain where classes/courses are taught in English. It offers a BA (Hons) in Graphic Design and Media, Interior Architecture and Design and Fashion Design and Manufacture.

The Academy is located in Monda, a safe and motivating environment; it is only a short drive from Marbella and Málaga. You can enjoy the Spanish lifestyle and wonderful weather of Andalucia and make friends from all over the world while studying for your BA (Hons) degree in Fashion Design.

Marbella Design Academy is student-focused, and we work in a family-like atmosphere. The students are part of a friendly community and often collaborate in varied department group projects across the different departments, which is great for broadening perspectives and horizons.

Courses are taught in a friendly atmosphere and presented with passion and dedication by our highly professional tutors. The students are valued as individuals and encouraged to explore their creative styles.

The achievement and attainment improve yearly, and we are proud to celebrate that our students continue to achieve outstanding results.

What are the plans for this year?

We are back to regular activity, and our third-year students participated in external catwalks and were also able to organise their own final collection catwalk at the Academy as part of the Graduation Party, which took place in May. We are also including digital tools in our course programme to be current with the latest technical innovations.

Additionally, we have introduced a new real-life upcycling project in conjunction with CUDECA, a local charity company, that enables our second-year students to create garments that will be sold for a good cause in the leading CUDECA shop in Málaga.

The fashion atelier at Marbella Design Academy. Image courtesy of the school.

Do you have any tips for future students who want to study at Marbella Design Academy?

To the question, do I need to draw or know how to sew before starting the course? The answer: no. Our course covers all the basics during the first months, and students will learn all the necessary skills throughout the course! To start the fashion design course, all you need is a passion for fashion design.

The academic level is high and comprehensive, with more tutor attention than is offered at most other universities, especially in the fashion department, where you often get one-on-one assessments during your garment constructions.

At Marbella Design Academy, you will find a nice and friendly student community, as well as a welcoming staff and tutor team.

Marbella Design Academy welcomes new students to the third-year BA (Hons) programmes twice per year, in January and September.

The Academy offers a three-month foundation course in design for applicants that do not fulfil the entrance requirements to enter the BA (Hons) programmes. Satisfactory completion of this course qualifies students to continue our BA (Hons) programmes. It starts in June, March and September of each year, and is also available online, with interactive virtual tuition given via Zoom.