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Course notes

Vicky Grainger, textiles teacher at Landon school in the London borough of Newham, has designs on creativity

Course Designers in Action: designing a fashion collection with Paul Smith.

Provider Design Museum (

Venue Design Museum. December 2003.

Cost pound;120, paid by the school.

How did you find out about it?

I'm on the museum's mailing list.

Why go?

The syllabus has an industrial slant but I wanted a fresh, design-led view of that.

What did it promise?

The chance to learn about design, technology and innovation first-hand from a leading designer.

Did it deliver?

It was an insight into how the sector works. Seeing some of the secrets of this small, tight-knit world revitalised my practice.

Highs and lows

The designer from Paul Smith brought her design boards and work in progress. You could see how ideas were used, how the specific market worked. But I would have liked more elbow room for the practical sessions.

Message, motto or mantra

Stepping into someone else's world helps you understand what it's like; something you can then draw on in your own work.

Best advice

We had a hands-on session colour grouping for a collection with samples and magazine illustrations. It took the "mood board" idea you might use in school a stage further.

Has it made a difference?

I'd only been back a week when I used it with my Year 11 revision group. I was able to flesh out the theory and make links with the clothes they see in the shops.

Coming your way?

The Design Museum runs a variety of workshops, tel: 020 7942 8782 or its website.


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