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Institut Français de la Mode is a higher education institution, a training center for apprentices, a provider of executive education, as well as a center of research and expertise for the textiles, fashion and luxury industries.
In 2019, Institut Français de la Mode, founded in 1986 and a pioneer in fashion management education, merged with Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne, founded in 1927 and recognized for the excellence of its training in couture savoir-faire.
Institut Français de la Mode now offers:
- Higher education training programs in fashion design, in fashion management and in savoir-faire
- A training center for apprentices
- Short, certificate or custom-designed continuing education programs for companies and institutions (around 3000 professionals trained by year)
- Summer School programs
- Academic research activities in the field of social and human sciences applied to fashion and design
- A Fashion Entrepreneurship Center
- An Economic Observatory which provides steering tools and studies for professionals, and a daily analysis of fashion consumption and distribution
- One of the most complete specialized libraries in France
The school has a fully renovated and equipped 9,000m2 campus in Paris, along the Seine. It allows it to welcome its 1000 students (soon 1200) in very good conditions.
Each of the studios and workshops are fully equipped with new equipment adapted to the design process:
– Technical workshop and knitwear studio
– Leather workshop
– Shoe workshop
– Photo studio
– Fabric library
IFM is a founding member of IFFTI (International Foundation of Fashion Technology Institutes), which gathers more than 60 members institutions around the world.
It has developed bilateral collaborations with schools such as Bocconi, FIT, HKPU, ISEM Madrid, LCF and ESCP.
On average, 38 % of the students are international.
Institut Français de la Mode is recognized by the French Ministry of Higher Education, which has granted in 2021 to IFM the very selective label of EESPIG (non profit private higher education school). IFM is a member of HESAM Université and of the Conférence des Grandes Ecoles.
IFM has developed privileged relations with French members of Cumulus such as ENSAD, Camondo, Duperré.
It is supported by the French Ministry of Economy, through an annual financial grant.
IFM has historically very strong relations with the french fashion and luxury industry. As an illustration, here are the 31 companies members of the IFM Foundation : Adidas ◼ Ami ◼ Arianee ◼ Balenciaga ◼ Birimian ◼ Burberry ◼ Céline ◼ Chanel ◼ Chloé ◼ Christian Dior Couture ◼ Christian Louboutin ◼ Farfetch ◼ Fondation Pierre Bergé – Yves Saint Laurent ◼ Fusalp ◼ Galeries Lafayette ◼ Groupe Etam ◼ Hermès ◼ Isabel Marant ◼ Kea Partners ◼ Kenzo ◼ Kering ◼ Kitten ◼ Le 19 M ◼ L'Oréal Luxe ◼ Louis Vuitton ◼ Paco Rabanne ◼ Première Vision ◼ Saint Laurent ◼ Sheriff ◼ Veuve Clicquot ◼ Zalando
The main mission of the IFM Foundation is to promote the school's equal opportunities policy by providing need-based scholarships for students. It also aims to finance research and educational innovation.
The specificity of the Institut Français de la Mode is to offer programs in the three main areas of the fashion industry value chain: design/management/technical know-how and to provide educational programs from vocational training to doctoral level.
The main focus of the school is on fashion design.
This is reflected in the number of students enrolled (almost 40% of the total students), in the amount of space dedicated to the fashion design programs and in the strong investment in equipment.
It is also reflected in the program of events : the MA show in February which is part of the official calendar of the Paris Fashion Week, and the BA show for the press and professionals in June.
Another focus is on entrepreneurship. A Fashion Entrepreneurship Center provides training through courses and/or individual coaching for entrepreneurs around innovative projects in the fashion and luxury sector. A specific variation of this program is proposed for creative labels, which has welcomed in the last years Jacquemus, Marine Serre, Vêtements, Christelle Koché, among others.
A unique accelerator program has been launched this year to support ten African emerging designers. The development of the research activity is a priority for the school cf below.
Faculties and Departments
- Fashion Design
- Fashion Management
- Technical Know-How
Bachelor Level Programs
- BA in Fashion Design – 3 years- State recognized Diploma of “Licence”
- BSc in Management for Fashion and Creative Industries – 3 years
- Bachelor in Pattern Making – 3 years (in apprenticeship)
Master Level Programs
- MA in Fashion Design – 2 years- 4 majors (Garment, Knitwear, Accessory and Image). State recognized Diploma of Master
- MS-Specialized Master in Fashion and Luxury Management – 16 months. State recognized Diploma.
- MSc in International Fashion & Luxury Management – 15 to 27 months depending upon candidate profile
- Executive MBA Global Fashion Management – 1 year. Part time
Research Activity and Main Areas
Institut Français de la Mode develops research in social sciences and management in the fields of fashion, clothing, luxury, and design. It looks at the major changes in design, innovation, and the evolution of lifestyles and consumption. It provides in-depth analysis of the cultural, sociological, stylistic and economic trends at work in the creative industries, exploring in particular new functional logics and the contribution of new technologies.
In the MA program, research is at the heart of the teaching and is essential to understanding the complexity of fashion, the stylistic and plastic options of students, as well as to decoding the creations and reformulating the creative forms of past and contemporary designers.
Through its PhD program offered in partnership with University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, young researchers are encouraged to approach fashion through a multidisciplinary approach: history, art history, law, design, aesthetics, management and art sciences applied to the field of fashion and luxury.
A research committee meets several times a year. It organizes an annual international research colloquium.
Faculty members are strongly encouraged to prepare a PhD, and to publish in international academic journals.
Three research chairs have been launched in the last three years, another one is in preparation:
– The "Economics of Creative Materials for Fashion" Chair , financed by Première Vision, the world's leading trade show for the fashion industry.
– The "Sustainable Development" Chair, financed by Kering.
– The “Fashion Savoir-Faire” Chair, financed by Chanel and le19M.
Doctorate Level Programs
- “Fashion Theories and Practice” PhD Program in association with Université Paris 1-Pantheon Sorbonne
Subject Areas for Exchange Students
Historically, student exchanges have been underdeveloped at IFM for two main reasons. On the one hand, a certain number of the oldest programs are too short in duration to allow for exchanges. On the other hand, given the attractiveness of Paris in the fashion and luxury sector and the wealth of workshop/internship opportunities offered, our students do not wish to do part of their studies in other countries. However, student international exposure is very important at IFM, even if it does not translate into academic exchange periods during the curriculum. IFM ensures that all students who graduate from the different programs have international experience. If this is not the case, the Careers Department asks the student to look for an internship abroad or other international experience. In addition, the launch of the Bachelor in Management for Fashion and Creative Industries, a program in which student exchanges over 6 months are planned, will allow the establishment of new agreements with international institutions, interested in the possibility of sending students passionate about fashion to the IFM. The most advanced partnerships to date are with NYU in New York, ESADE in Barcelona, Bocconi in Milan and ESCP through its campuses abroad. Student exchanges will start in spring 2023.