Interview with IFA Fashion Students – Part 3

Charlotte Loring, a 26-year-old graduate student, spoke with us about the Contemporary Fashion Design Master of Arts Degree at IFA Paris. She currently holds a Bachelor’s Degree and previously studied Fashion Design at a university in Paris.

Charlotte draping a top made entirely of salvaged pants
Charlotte draping a top made entirely of salvaged pants

1/ Hello Charlotte, what subjects do you study in the Master of Arts Degree in Contemporary Fashion Design?

Charlotte/ In this program we study subjects ranging from Fashion Ethnography to Consumer Behavior. I particularly enjoy Art History and a course about new technologies in fabrics called Innovative Textile Workshop.


2/ What led you to choose this university to continue your studies and earn a Master’s Degree?

Charlotte/ I was interested in going deeper into sartorial matters from an academic standpoint and learning more about what drives the fashion industry in general. I visited the IFA Paris campus before I applied and was really impressed with the creative atmosphere and facilities of the school. It was the perfect choice for me.


3/ How do you find the courses at IFA regarding Fashion Design? Would you say they are beneficial to you?

Charlotte/ Yes, IFA is especially good at encouraging creativity; I have discovered many new types of silhouettes and shapes that I had not taken on prior to this program. Also, many of the design classes are workshop based, so with the spacious classrooms and big windows I feel I can cultivate my passion, totally free from restrictions.


4/ What about the workload and time duration given before submission to each project?

Charlotte/ There is plenty of time given before the submission date, and I say this having a job outside of school. Classes are around 20 to 25 hours a week, so there is definitely enough time to work on projects, although it can get intense at times, especially during Fashion Week!


5/ What inspires you before starting on your projects? Do you take some time to think alone, go for a walk, or just refer to someone’s opinion?

Charlotte/ Lately I would say what inspires me are issues in the industry, whether it’s sustainability or fixing a system that’s broken in some areas, like sourcing. It is very important to me to design with the elements used in mind, for example, what I can design using certain leather that is sustainable and less harmful to the earth.


6/ Do you think that it makes a difference studying Fashion Design in Paris as opposed to any other place or country?

Charlotte/ I think Fashion Design students are at an extreme advantage when they study in Paris. The city itself is chockfull of cultural references, not to mention there’s countless industry related events here, like Paris Fashion Week and the many fashion exhibits in museums, where you can find me on the weekends!


7/ Finally what kind of trips does the university involve you in regarding fashion?

Charlotte/ IFA scheduled one of the Fashion Photography classes at the Pinacotheque, an art gallery, to see Karl Lagerfeld’s work and next week the Textiles class will meet at a fashion designer’s workshop. Another course of mine has met outside the campus twice during class time to see exhibitions. I think it’s vital to see subjects you study in a practical way.


Thank you so much for filling us in on what you do at IFA, and we hope that things will remain going as you please. We look forward to seeing your designs on your graduation day.

Read part one and part two to find out more about how it is to be a Fashion Design Student at IFA Paris.


Written By Karim Kurdi



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