Length of Program: 2 YearsProgram Intakes: Fall Intake (September program start)Careers

Apparel Technology

"The instructors in the Apparel Technology program are incredibly knowledgeable and well-connected in the fashion world. I was a student at the Alberta College of Arts & Design, but decided to leave and attend Olds College. The instructors encourage you to be the best you can be. You can take your ideas from your head and make them become a reality. There is nothing more rewarding than holding your completed design in your hands. I always knew what I wanted to do, but I just wasn’t sure how, or where – Olds College helped me with that. We have a wide range of career opportunities. Now I have a plan for my future."

Izzy Wright, Apparel Technology Student

Fashion Apparel student designs showcased during a fashion show

What can you expect from the program?

Using state-of-the art industrial equipment and processes, students will be prepared to enter the workforce with the knowledge and ability to make an immediate impact in the industry. If you have the desire to use your creative abilities in a fast-paced work environment, our 2-year Apparel Technology program offers two majors; Costume Cutting and Construction, and Fashion Apparel.

What will you learn?

The Apparel Technology program has two majors; Costume Cutting and Construction, and Fashion Apparel. In the first year of the program, all students will learn basic apparel construction, clothing history, pattern design, textiles, and workplace communication and professionalism. As students move to the second year, they will have a schedule that will help build skills dedicated to the major they select.


Costume Cutting & Construction Major - This major allows you to immerse yourself in the upbeat and dramatic field of the performing arts where you thrive in wardrobe departments, construct costumes for men and women, and excel in pattern-making and design. A broad range of courses will nurture your commitment to educational excellence as you learn about the history of pattern making, textiles, and the particulars of couture and specialty fabrics. Plus, you will focus on the operation of industrial sewing and pressing equipment. As part of the Costume Cutting and Construction major you will also participate in a workplace practicum. Prepare yourself for the role of a lifetime as you work with seasoned professionals from the performing arts industry.

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Fashion Apparel Major - The Fashion Apparel major is perfect fit if you love to sew, or would love to learn to sew. The Fashion Institute will help to equip you with a strong foundation in apparel construction, alterations and product development. We will provide you with the necessary skills to take your career where you wish. From sketches and illustrations to individual design, students receive real-life hands-on education with up-to-date curriculum delivered by highly reputable instructors.

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Program at a glance

Credential: Diploma

Length of Program: 2 Years

Method of Delivery: The Fashion Institute by Olds College, Calgary, Alberta

Directed Field Study/Work Term/Practicum: Both majors include a Directed Field Study. Costume Cutting majors will complete this in the last semester of the program. Fashion Apparel majors will have a 40 hour Directed Field Study in the third semester of the program.

Program Intakes: Fall Intake (September program start)

Applications Open: October 1 for the Fall Intake

Selection Process for Admission: First Qualified, First Accepted

Tuition, Mandatory Fees, Books, and Supplies: Please refer to the current Fee Schedule for details

  • Year 1: Tuition & Fees: $5,180 / Books & Supplies: $1,900
  • Year 2 (Fashion Apparel): Tuition & Fees: $5,150 / Books & Supplies: $1,300
  • Year 2 (Costume Cutting & Construction): Tuition & Fees: $5,150 / Books & Supplies: $1,910

*These fees are provided as estimates only for the purposes of budgeting. Please note that all fees are best estimates and are subject to change.

International Students will require a Co-Op Work Permit as well as a Study Permit for this program.

What do I need to apply?

Admission Requirements:

  • 50% or better in English Language Arts 30-1 or 30-2
  • 50% or better in Math 20-1 or 20-2
  • Meet the English Language Proficiency Requirement (completed at minimum 3 years of formal education taught entirely in English or provide the results of a recognized English Language Proficiency exam)

Academic Upgrading and High School Applicants: Applicants currently in high school or who are completing academic upgrading must submit proof of enrollment and any available interim/midterm marks. Final marks must be submitted within one month following the completion of the course(s) and no later than one month prior to the program start date.

Alternate Admission Option: Alternate Admission status may apply to students who have not or will not complete one or more of the academic admission requirements. To apply under Alternate Admission Status, please provide the following:

  1. (Required) Transcript(s) showing any completed high school and post-secondary courses
  2. (Required) Letter of Introduction and Intent, outlining the following:
    • Introduce yourself
    • Indicate why you wish to enrol in the program
    • Elaborate on your career goals
    • Detail your experience relevant to this program and the industry
  3. (Required) A resume of your work history, extracurricular activities, volunteer service, etc. for the last 5 years
  4. (Optional) Include copies of any tickets and/or certificates you currently hold (e.g.: first aid, safety tickets, etc.)
  5. (Optional) Letter(s) of reference from current or past employers/coaches/etc. (maximum of two letters)

Out of Province Applicants: Please refer to the Provincial Equivalency Chart for course equivalencies.

International Applicants: Olds College welcomes applications from international applicants and those who have completed their high school education outside of Canada. Please note, it is still necessary to meet all of the noted admission requirements, including English Language Proficiency. Further information can be found on our website under International Students.

What is The Fashion Institute by Olds College?

The Fashion Institute is located on the seventh floor of the Bow Valley College South Campus, our Calgary campus consists of 4 classrooms, 1 lecture theatre, 1 workshop, a mock retail store, 2 industry class display windows, 14 practice shadow boxes, six sewing and pattern drafting studios, a costume and clothing archive, and a 30 person computer lab.

Learn More

I have some more questions. Who do I contact for help?

Our Admissions office can help navigate you through the admissions process and answer any questions you have about your program of study.

Admitted Students

What materials and supplies will I need?

Congratulations! Admitted students will be required to purchase the following materials & supplies:

Online Textbook Order Forms:

Apparel Technology Textbook Order Form - 1st Year

Apparel Technology Textbook Order Form - 2nd Year (Costume Major)

Apparel Technology Textbook Order Form - 2nd Year (Fashion Major)

Textbook Order Form links will be updated shortly.

Please note that supply lists will be handed out on Orientation Day.

Visit the Admitted Students site

Do I need to register for a locker?

Lockers are available at the Olds College Calgary Campus on the seventh floor of the Bow Valley College South Campus. Students must register their locker with the Fashion Institute.