Design trends, FASHION



1) An Introduction to fashion design apprenticeship.

2) Program structure.  

3) Terms and conditions for successful registration and graduation.

An Introduction to Fashion Design Apprenticeship Program 

Fashion is a term used interchangeably to represent the creation of clothing, jewelries, footwear, accessories and cosmetics of diverse cultural aesthetics and their mix and match into outfits that depict distinctive styles and trends as signifiers of social status, self – expression, etc. Fashion design is a form of art dedicated to the creation of fashion. Hence, Fashion design apprenticeship program is a system for training a new generation of program which is established to respond to the need for better trained machinists and designers forms the necessary foundation and building block for going into the industry.  

A fashion design apprenticeship program is instrumental in ensuring individuals are well versed in garment design, garment construction and the use of pattern making methods in apparel making. The program aims to imbibe in the apprentice the ability to create prototypes and tailoring garments, produce technical sketches and find sources for fabrics and trimmings. It is of relevance, however, to note that this program is a tool for bringing out the creative prowess in the apprentice, and like any other tool, it depends on the person using it whether it is used well or ill.

In other words, as skills obtained from this program cannot replace the natural and creative ability to design garments, no amount of apprenticeship programs can transform an uncreative mind to an innovative one (this is why some fashion designers still employ other fashion designers to create novel designs for them).  

 Program Structure 

Typically, a fashion design apprenticeship program could last for about four years, where the apprentice gains knowledge on courses like apparel construction, fashion technology, jewelry design, footwear and accessories design, clothing and textile, among others. During this time, the apprentice undergoes three vital apprenticeship phases before he/she can successfully graduate. The first stage is the deep observation or passive mode. It is the early stage of in – class experience. When you enter a new career or environment (in the case of the fashion design environment), you move into a world with its own rules, procedures and dynamics.  

This is for observing how things are done. This will help you understand the industry and will be a very important skill for the subsequent creative stages of your life. Next is the skill acquisition or practice mode. It is the later stage of in – class experience where you begin to practice towards the acquisition of skills. The third phase is the experimentation (active) mode, where work experiences are gathered. It is the shortest phase, but a critical component in the fashion design apprenticeship program. At this phase, you gain in skill and confidence and are required to make the move to a more active mode of experimentation. It could mean initiating a project of some sort, doing work that exposes you to the criticism of peers or the public, or even creating designs for fashion shows to make a statement in the industry.  

  Terms and Conditions for Successful Registration and Graduation 


Apprenticeship, even in fashion, is a contractual agreement undertaken by the employer (master   craftsman) and the apprentice and like every other apprenticeship, it needs to meet certain criteria before it can be legally binding . It is a practical field of study, and just as you would require certain paperwork to get into a tertiary institution, you would require the same for this program. “Section 50 (1) of the 2004 Labour Act stipulates that every contract of apprenticeship thereof shall be in writing; and no such writing shall be valid unless attested by and made with the approval of an authorized labor officer certified in writing under his hand on the contract or assignment” . This goes without saying that for an apprenticeship program to be legally valid and recognized, it must fulfill this basic requirement and both parties to the contract must be in agreement.  

There are certain criteria and events that would lead a trainee in a fashion design apprenticeship program to be suspended or even expelled. However, unlike expulsion which is a permanent form of termination, suspension is temporary. Training contracts can be temporarily suspended when an apprentice or trainee is not able to work due to illness or cases like childbirth and maternity leave. Also, trainees can be suspended due to dishonest activities like plagiarism and copying their fellow trainee’s designs.  

    Generally, a breach in the terms of agreement of the apprenticeship program contract can lead to expulsion from the program. However the program can be terminated if, by performance; the contract runs its cause and is performed, by agreement; both parties agree to end the contract, or if the current circumstances of the contract changes which alter the ability of the contract to be performed (such circumstance is usually aforementioned as a condition for termination).   

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