Best fashion schools in Italy for international students (2022)


Updated on Jan 10 • 7 minute read

Italy is one of the prime fashion destinations in the world. Versace, Dolce&Gabbana, Prada, Armani … do we need to say more? It’s no surprise that Italian fashion schools attract thousands of people each year to this Mediterranean country.

Studying fashion in Italy is a fast-track to the high-fashion industry. Events like Milan Fashion Week, Pitti Immagine Uomo in Florence, and Rome’s Altaroma create strong platforms to exchange ideas and showcase young talent. And most of the popular fashion universities in Italy have long-lasting partnerships and deeply-rooted bonds with luxury fashion houses and famous designer labels.

In Italy, you'll learn first-hand from the key industry figures and start working on your network already during your education. In other words, you’ll get all the tools necessary to open the doors to your future in fashion!

So, where should you study fashion in Italy?

In this article, we’ll walk you through the best fashion schools in Italy for international students and all you need to know about them. Namely, their:

  • bachelor’s and master’s programs
  • annual fees (tuition + registration)
  • scholarships
  • the average percentage of international students
  • average class size
  • placement rate
  • famous graduates and their places of work

Here we go!

Best fashion schools in Italy for international students:

1. The best fashion school in Italy: Istituto Marangoni

© Istituto Marangoni

Istituto Marangoni is one of the oldest and most prestigious fashion schools in the world founded in 1935. It’s famous for its qualified and attentive teachers and a wide choice of courses in the areas of fashion design, styling and business.

It’s particularly known for its Milan campus that ranked as the 7th best fashion school in the world in 2021. It's located right in the heart of the fashion capital of Italy. This location is easily accessible by bus, tram or metro from any corner of Milan.

Students at this university are given the best tools for their growth. They are also given plenty of opportunities to expand their network by participating in special educational projects from the key companies in the fashion industry and attending profile events. The career service of Istituto Marangoni assists students in contacting their future employers, and getting their dream internships.

By the end of a course, each student will have made several collections. And, annually, selected students have the chance to present their work at Milan Fashion Show.

Some of the alumni of Istituto Marangoni you might know are designers Franco Moschino and Jhoan Sebastian Grey, and Valentina Collado, the fashion director of Vogue Mexico.

Locations in Italy: Milan, Florence

Average percentage of international students: 79%

Average class size: 20

Placement rate: 80%

Graduates work at: Valentino, Chanel, Dior, Gucci, Fendi, Versace, Louis Vuitton, Prada

Bachelor degree programmes: Fashion Business Communication & Media; Fashion Business Digital Communication & Media; Fashion Design & Marketing; Fashion Styling & Visual Merchandising; Fashion Business; Fashion Styling & Creative Direction; Fashion Business & Buying; Fashion Design; Fashion Design & Accessories

Average annual fee for Bachelor’s programmes:

  • EU students: € 23 700
  • International students: € 27 100

Master degree programmes: Fashion Buying & Merchandising; Fashion Business & Digital Marketing; Fashion Business & Entrepreneurship; Fashion Design Menswear/Womenswear/Activewear; Fashion Promotion Communication & Digital Media; Fashion Design Collection & Marketing; Fashion e-business and Digital Transformation; Fashion Art & Textile Innovation; Fashion & Luxury Brand Management; Fashion Omnichannel & E-Commerce; Fashion Product Management; Fashion Promotion Communication & Media; Luxury Accessories Design & Management

Average annual fee for Master’s programmes:

  • EU students: € 32 100
  • International students: € 34 500

Scholarships: Each year Istituto Marangoni chooses the most gifted students to award with a scholarship of up to 50% deduction on the tuition fee.

More info: Download the admission pack (2021-2022) for the detailed requirements and the application form.

2. Polimoda

Polimoda Fashion Show 2021 © Polimoda

Polimoda is one of the best independent Italian fashion schools located in the Firenze neighbourhood of Florence. It’s a convenient location that can be easily reached by walking or public transport from any part of Florence.

Polimoda fosters an interdisciplinary approach to fashion education, with its main values centred around heritage, research and creativity. Students are always encouraged to push boundaries and outdo themselves.

The school’s curriculums are regularly updated to fit contemporary market needs. Many of the courses are done in collaboration with fashion industry heavyweights such as Kris Van Assche, Caroline Issa, and Salvatore Ferragamo. You’ll be guided by seasoned teachers with years of experience in fashion behind their belts.

Polimoda regularly organizes events and initiatives to spotlight the work of its best students. Such events include the annual graduation Polimoda Fashion Show, and Business Links for one-on-one interaction between graduate students and companies. The high placement rate of 91% reflects the quality of education and professional relations of Polimoda.

Locations in Italy: Florence

Average percentage of international students: 71%

Average class size: 20 students

Placement rate: 91%

Graduates work at: Ferragamo, Gucci, Fendi, Valentino, Givenchy, Vivienne Westwood

Bachelor’s degree programmes: Fashion Design; Fashion Business; Fashion Art Direction; Fashion Styling; Fashion Marketing Management; Atelier Design; Fashion Accessories Design; Product Management; Fashion Design Management

Average annual fee for Bachelor’s programmes: € 18 000

Master’s degree programmes: Fashion Retail Management; Fashion Brand Management; Luxury Business; Fashion Art Direction; Fashion Design; Collection Design; Shoe Design; Bag Design; Fashion Styling; Fashion Trends Forecasting; Fashion Critique and Curation; Sustainable Fashion; Creative Direction; Knitwear Design; Fashion Marketing & Communications; Fashion Merchandising & Buying; International Fashion Business; Knitwear Design; Product Management

Average annual fee for Master’s programmes: € 28 000

Scholarships: Top talented students can be awarded a scholarship up to € 14 000

More info: For more information on admission requirements head to Polimoda website.

3. Accademia Costume & Moda

© Accademia Costume & Moda

Accademia Costume & Moda is a top Italian fashion design school with central locations in Rome and Milan. The largest and oldest campus is situated in the Ponte district of Rome and can be best reached by bus from other parts of Rome.

The academy is renowned for its culture rooted in experimentation, design and craftsmanship. It was established in 1964. Since then it’s been building its prestige by producing famous alumni such as the two most recent Gucci creative directors and Maurizio Galante, one of the most respected haute couture fashion designers. Moreover, Accademia Costume & Moda hosts lectures and workshops in partnerships with brands like Giorgio Armani, Valentino, Salvatore Ferragamo, Louis Vuitton and Prada.

These links in the professional world have a positive impact on the placement ratio which has been around 85% for the past 5 years. Students also get a lot of assistance with job placement, from portfolio development right until the interviews and feedback.

Locations in Italy: Rome, Milan

Average percentage of international students: 25%

Average class size:

  • Bachelor’s: 22-53
  • Master’s: 11

Placement rate: 85%

Graduates work at: Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Fendi, Valentino, Salvatore Ferragamo, Alexander McQueen, Cavalli

Bachelor’s degree programmes: Costume & Fashion; Fashion Editor — Styling & Communication; Fashion Design Management

The Bachelor’s programmes are held in Italian and require a minimum B2 level of knowledge of the language.

Average annual fee for Bachelor’s programmes:

  • EU students: € 10 000
  • International students: €13 000

Master’s degree programmes: Alta Moda - Fashion Design; Fashion Sustainability & Industry Evolution; Fabrics Innovation Design; Fashion Communication & Art Direction; Creative Knitwear Design; Accessory Design; Fashion Jewelry; The Art & Craft of the Costume Designer

Average annual fee for Master’s programmes:

  • EU students: € 12 000
  • International students: €17 200

Scholarships: Accademia Costume & Moda grants total and partial coverage scholarships for motivated and talented students each year.

More info: Discover the admission requirements for each course here.

4. Domus Academy

Domus Academy is a private Milan fashion school founded in 1982. It offers post-graduate courses, characterized by its visionary innovation.

The students of Domus are given the freedom to design their own academic path. You’ll be able to participate in cross-disciplinary hands-on workshops with other international students and work on projects of your choice for top design studios.

Domus Academy is especially known for its commercial studies with focus on the management side of fashion. Here, you’ll learn how to enhance your professional profile and create a valuable network. The academy also has a Language Center where you can level up your Italian language skills.

To top it off, the campus is located in the Navigli district, which is a hotspot for Milan nightlife and entertainment. The campus is shared with the New Academy of Fine Arts and has a vibrant student population representing more than 50 nationalities.

Locations in Italy: Milan

Average percentage of international students: 95%

Average class size: 23

Placement rate: 92%

Graduates work at: Calvin Klein, Gucci, Giorgio Armani, Max Mara.

Master’s degree programmes: Fashion Design; Fashion Management; Fashion Styling and Visual Merchandising

Average annual fee for Master’s programmes:

  • EU students: € 21 900
  • International students: € 24 900

Scholarships: A limited number of students (around 5) can get a reduction of up to 60% of their tuition fee each year.

More info: Download the admission pack (2022-2023)

5. IED: Istituto Europeo di Design

IED is an Italian design school with an international soul. Since its opening in 1966 in Milan, the fashion school has expanded to Spain, Brazil and China.

Each school is independent, united only by the shared principles that unite technology, experimentation, creativity and communication. The programs are focused on the development of cultural, creative and critical skills and competencies. Special attention of the curriculum goes to the industrial side of fashion with many practical courses that train students in supply chain and marketing-related disciplines.

IED welcomes about 2 000 foreign students each year. Some of the famous graduates include Maria Grazia Chiuri (creative director of Dior) and Beatriz Baleeiro (designer at Alexander McQueen).

Most of the fashion programs are held in the Milan campus. It's located in the Morivione district, close to Porta Romana metro and train stations, and Fondazione Prada art centre.

Locations in Italy: Milan, Florence, Rome, Como

Average class size: 15

Placement rate: 80%

Graduates work at: Valentino, Dior, Calvin Klein, Adidas, Swarovski, J.W. Anderson, Alexander McQueen

Bachelor’s degree programmes: Fashion Design; Fashion Marketing; Fashion Stylist; Jewelry Design

Master’s degree programmes: Fashion Textile Design; Fashion Marketing; Fashion Business; Fashion Design; Jewelry Design; Fashion Communication and Styling

Average annual fees: The annual contribution ranges from a minimum of € 8 800 to a maximum of € 17 200. The fee is calculated based on the income bracket of a student’s family.

Scholarships: The IED offers scholarships that cover up to 100% of the tuition fee for Undergraduate courses and up to 50% for Master’ courses. They are awarded based on competition, with a different assignment each year.

More info: Learn about the admission process of IED on its official website.

Do you want to know more about studying in Italy? We break down the costs and explain the Italian education system here.

We just talked about the top 5 fashion schools and design universities in Italy. Each of them offers great opportunities for your professional growth and future career.

Are you considering staying in Italy after your graduation? You might want to check what to expect from Italian salaries.

Did you get accepted by your dream fashion university in Italy? Then it's time to start working through your moving checklist and apply for your student visa!

We wish you good luck on your fashion adventures in Italy!

Please reach out to if you have any suggestions or inquiries about the content on this page.

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