From education to employment

Designer Katie Furzer appointed as Fashion Design Lecturer at Arts University Plymouth

Designer Katie Furzer appointed as Fashion Design Lecturer at Arts University Plymouth

Katie has over 15 years experience in the fashion industry, working as a freelance designer for brands including Dickies, SuperDry Japan, New Look and Timberland

Fashion and textiles designer Katie Furzer has been appointed as a Lecturer on BA (Hons) Fashion Design at Arts University Plymouth.

Katie, who has worked for household name brands including Dickies, SuperDry Japan, New Look and Timberland, specialises in producing beautiful, innovative couture design together with trend-led commercial work. A designer first, Katie previously led on Textiles and Surface Design at degree level at University Centre Somerset, while studying for her MA in Fashion and Textiles at Bath Spa University.

Katie said, “I did my degree in Fashion at University of the Creative Arts Epsom in London and from there I went into high street fashion. I worked for Debenhams and New Look, and I freelanced at Dickies for a long time, working in the design department. I also worked in higher education at University Centre Somerset and after leaving there went on to do a Masters in Textiles. I really missed hands-on making and so I embraced printing, as well as knitting and digital embroidery, while also experimenting with mixed media such as the laser cutter. After I completed my MA, I got myself an agent and have since sold my work to Kate Spade and Instagram influencer Olivia Palermo.”

“When the pandemic hit, I took a part-time job at Exeter College, and after working there for two years I’m thrilled to become a Lecturer at Arts University Plymouth. It feels like everything’s coming together now, with fashion, textiles and the research element of exploring my own practice. It’s all so exciting and positive with this many creative people around me. I’m feeling so inspired and looking forward to the future.”

Katie joins the Fashion Design team at Arts University Plymouth, after this year’s graduates showed great success at the 2022 Graduate Fashion Week, with Ben Riley winning ‘Highly Commended’ at the catwalk show as well as Oliwia Nowotnik, Millie Jenkinson and Morgan Elder also showcasing their high quality designs at the prestigious London event.

Katie said, “There’s a lovely vibe at Arts University Plymouth. There’s an underground art scene that I’m keen to explore and seeing the sea out of the studio windows everyday is incredible. It feels friendly and welcoming while professional and inspirational here. I get so much back from students, it’s a real two-way street. I enjoy teaching and interacting with them. Seeing them develop keeps me fresh.”

Senior Lecturer and Subject Leader on BA (Hons) Fashion Design Heather Martin said of Katie’s appointment,

“Katie balances out the team skill set in such a beneficial way, bringing her expertise from her experience within industry and academia to her professional understanding of working with top brands and designers. She brings a commercial design perspective, digital skills and a curiosity that will greatly benefit our students. We are very pleased to have her join BA (Hons) Fashion Design here at Arts University Plymouth.”

In her spare time, Katie loves to paddle board and mountain bike as well as running and yoga. She also loves reading, which she does on her train commute to Plymouth. 

Fashion Design students frequently collaborate with other students from across the creative community at Arts University Plymouth. Working alongside Fashion Communication, Film & Screen Arts and Commercial Photography students allows for interdisciplinary opportunities to be explored in an environment where all students are pursuing creative practices.

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