Made in Britain: Design and Fashion in and around London

Photo of Bodleian Study Abroad London Trip


Update: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, SAIC has canceled this study trip.


Itinerary: London, Oxford, Nottingham

June 10 - June 27, 2020
*Note: Dates subject to change

This course explores British fashion and design in a time of tumultuous political and social events. In 2016, just before the U.S. election of Pres. Trump, the U.K. voted by referendum to leave the European Union, a decision that threw the country into an existential crisis with significant impact on economy and culture. For a nation whose history was shaped by empire and industrialization, design and fashion have always reflected national identity as well as strains of resistance to official authority. 

In this class we will tour iconic collections of British design, surveying major design currents such as Victorian industrial consumerism, the socialist Arts & Crafts Movement, the rise of Modernism and competition with French fashion in the 1920s, and the more recent developments of punk, postmodernism, and critical design. Our travel style is immersive, incorporating large national collections as well as small, eclectic sites of curating and practice. Side trips will take us to the revered Gothic passageways of Oxford, home to the oldest museum in Europe, as well as the historical lace manufacturing center of Nottingham. Students will have independent time toward the end of the trip to propose their own paths of study, and produce studio responses to the themes of British national style and tourism. 

Credits3 credits STUDIO (3000 level) and/or 3 credits ARTHI (4000-level)

Caroline Bellios, Fashion Design

Bess Williamson, Art History, Theory, and Criticism

Program feeApprox. $2,600 (including transport during the program, accommodation and some meals; not including airfare).

PLUS Tuition cost per credit:
Undergraduate—$1,666 per credit hour;
Graduate—$1,730 per credit hour.

Budget at least $1,100 for airfare if flying from Chicago. (Note this is only an estimated figure. Actual fare will depend on many variables including airline, number of stopovers, exchange rate fluctuations, ports of departure and return, and date of ticket purchase).

Online registration begins: March 11, 2020

Deposit due at registration$525

Information sessions:
Tuesday, February 11,  12:10-12:50 p.m., MacLean room MC 707
Wednesday, February 19,  4:15-5:15 p.m., Sullivan room SC 1210

Previous trip's course evaluations:

  • The schedule and locations planned by the instructors allow us to view many different bits of knowledge relate to the topic. I enjoy all the places we went, I think I learn more than I expected and get much inspiration.
  • I have never traveled before this trip. I now have the confidence and thirst to keep exploring the world and learning from new experiences. Caroline, and Bess, were absolutely wonderful guides and mentors throughout the trip in every way. I learned so much about putting history into context, about other cultures even outside of London... and was able to think more broadly about my own work. I know this trip will fuel my practice for years to come.
  • Great experience and super fun, but still a lot of work but not terrible.
  • Be ready to make great friends and learn about yourself.