Smal, Desiree


Current Institution: 

Educator in design, researcher of environmental sustainability in fashion design praxis

Prof Desiree Smal

Transforming Fashion Education to Design with Intent



Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

Two fundamental shifts are currently evident in design. Firstly, a growing call to integrate research and praxis is evident. Secondly, a call to move fashion design praxis to more relevant and value-adding environmental sustainable and user-centred design approaches is emerging. As such, fashion education should align itself to such shifts.

Developing a discourse in fashion design: What is research for fashion design?



Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

The concept of fashion has attracted a great deal of interest from a variety of academic disciplines such as history, culture, anthropology, sociology, psychology and semiotics to name a few. This has often resulted in tension between different approaches. At a conference held in England in 2009 concerning the future of fashion studies, a number of fashion scholars such Rebecca Arnold, Christopher Breward, Professor Stella Bruzzi and many others, deliberated on the methodologies and research agendas that have emerged in the growing research area of fashion studies.

How green is your wardrobe?

DEFSA conferences

DEFSA promotes relevant research with the focus on design + education through its biennial conferences, to promote professionalism, accountability and ethics in the education of young designers. Our next conference is a hybrid event. See above for details.

Critical skills endorsement

Professional Members in good standing can receive a certificate of membership, but DEFSA cannot provide confirmation or endorsement of skills whatsoever. DEFSA only confirm membership of DEFSA which is a NPO for Design Education in South Africa (