I Do Windows

Visual Merchandising Classes

Posted in Fashion Schools by Arcadia on July 14, 2011

For those of us on a school schedule, summertime is usually when things get a little slow, as school is out.  It’s a great time to sit back and plot your next move, which usually includes getting a job or more school.

A question I get asked A LOT is where can one go to get training in Visual Merchandising.  [Shameless plug →]: Well if you are in San Francisco, you most definitely should take my class at City College – FASH 49, it’s only offered in the spring :).

But for those of you in other places I’ve complied a list of schools I would recommend (this is in no particular order):

1.  Of course I have to recommend Academy of Art University, since they are located right here in San Francisco, and many of the students in our fashion department transfer to this school.  It’s a wonderful institution, I’ve actually hired a student from their graphic design program to design my company logo!

2.  Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising or FIDM as we call it.  A friend of mine taught in their Interior Design Department here in San Francisco, he loved it!  They have locations in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Diego.

3.  This list wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t mention Parsons The New School for Design!  It’s located in New York with a formidable list of graduates.

4. Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) is another fashion powerhouse, with famous graduates.  It’s part of New York’s state university school system.

5.  I was surprised to discover Oregon State University had a thriving fashion program and degree in Merchandising Management.  Keep in mind their visual merchandising class is tied into a larger program, as with many of the other colleges.

6.  Central St. Martins in London – enough said!

7.  Don’t be fooled this school’s location – Ohio – Kent State University is a great school!

8.  Savannah College of Art and Design looks lovely.  Their visual merchandising class is FASM 425 and its titled Visual Merchandising Communication for Fashion – fancy!  This school is located in Savannah, Georgia.

9.  Got nine months to do nothing but immerse yourself in visuals in Florence,Italy – then definitely check out Polimoda!

10.  LIM College is one of the very few fashion schools that focuses solely on the business of fashion and not design.  This school offers a degree in visual merchandising:  Bachelor of Business Administration in Visual Merchandising.

This list is in no way exhaustive, I’m sure there are many other schools out there I’ve missed, but what I tried to focus on are the schools that offer visual merchandising programs.  There are a myriad of fashion schools but keep in mind most of them focus on fashion design, textile design, jewelry, millinery, etc….not really merchandising.  I wanted to highlight the schools that offer programs in our field.

Good luck!

“It has been said 80% of what people learn is visual”Allen Klein, (An American businessman)

(image via: Fashionista)

4 Responses

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  1. visualtoptips said, on May 29, 2012 at 8:43 am

    I’ve been working as visual merchandiser for the past 8 years. I’m currently working for a fashion retail company in Brazil. I have a degree in management marketing and interior design as well. I used to live in London, where I had the opportunity to work as Visual merchandiser for Gap and study personal styling in the London College of Fashion. Now I’m looking for a specific visual merchandising and store design course in order to update my skills. I wonder if you know any courses in New York that can meet my needs. Please, check out my blog: http://www.visualtoptips.com

  2. april xmas said, on August 21, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    how about an online school for visual merchandising? Do you recommend one?

  3. Arcadia said, on August 22, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    I have not heard of an online school, but if you are so inclined to teach yourself, you can learn quite a bit from the plethora of textbooks out there. Any book by Martin Pegler is excellent, and the textbook used by many schools (including myself) is Silent Selling by Bell and Ternus,

  4. urbanaccentsnewyork said, on November 27, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    This is Ben from Urban Accents NY I have an e-commerce website called http://www.urbanaccentsny.com and would like you to consider using my art print folding screens in your upcoming window designs. I have over 300 folding screens to choose from in different styles that I think would be great to use in showcasing windows.

    If you are interested, I am willing to offer them to you at my cost in exchange for a photo of your design (and perhaps a link exchange from your website) for my future press releases. I am interested in seeing some more of your work in the hopes that we might possibly work together sometime.

    Please feel free to call me at 646 342-6374 or email me at urbanaccentsnewyork@gmail.com



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