Fashion Design Department


La Mode Fashion Show 2024

LA Mode 2024 Fashion Show

LA Mode 2024, "Timeless Style and Substance." The show will feature an eclectic mix of casual, club, evening and avant garde capsule collections showcasing each designer's creative direction.

Welcome to the Fashion Department

Santa Monica College’s Fashion Design and Merchandising Department offers an exciting, competitive and highly respected fashion program. Our expert faculty bring decades of industry experience, transforming the classroom into a simulated real-world workspace. Develop the skills you need to create a high-quality professional portfolio: enter into a 4-year degree program or launch your fashion career right away.

Unlike most community colleges, Santa Monica College has articulation agreements with top fashion schools including the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM)--which means you can easily transfer to a four-year institution as you work toward a higher degree to help launch your fashion career. Our Fashion Design program weaves together courses in design, technical flat sketching and illustration, pattern drafting, sewing, draping, garment production and more. Fashion Design and Merchandising students also learn about historical and global fashion trends as well as color theory--then put those skills to work during internships and our annual LA Mode Fashion Show.

Former SMC students are extremely visible in the fashion industry. One of our accomplished Fashion graduates created the costumes for Dancing with the Stars, America’s Got Talent and Charmed. Other Fashion alumni have gone on to launch popular e-commerce and brick-and-mortar retail stores including fashion boutiques in Santa Monica and Brentwood. Some of these fashion retailers have even been covered by Vogue and W magazines. Fashion careers are as diverse as our students, spanning design, styling, merchandising, purchasing, marketing and promotions, and so much more.

Not only do we equip you with the knowledge, technical skills, and experience to build a foundation in fashion, SMC’s location is the perfect springboard into the fashion industry. Los Angeles and Santa Monica area home to many west coast apparel companies and some of the largest fashion exhibition and market buying centers in the world. Film and music production companies bring added value, with job opportunities available across costume design, branding and merchandising.

Gain industry access and step into a fast-paced, creative career in fashion--starting at SMC.

Discover your purpose. Pursue your passion. Explore Fashion Design and Merchandising.

Programs of Study


Fashion Design

Fashion design students develop skills in design communication, including preliminary sketching, technical flat sketching, illustration, and usage of Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and CAD software.

Degree Information


Fashion merchandising students learn and experience each step of the development, promotion, and sales of fashion and lifestyle product lines.

Degree Information