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Ian McInnes

Ian McInnes

Principal Lecturer

Nottingham School of Art & Design

Staff Group(s)
Fashion, knitwear and textile design


Leading and managing the teaching and assessment of Fashion Knitwear and Knitted Textiles across the curricula within the Department of Fashion, Textiles and Knitwear. He oversees the resourcing of delivery to support the learning which includes materials and machinery and the line management of subject-specialist staff in permanent posts and the appointment of hourly paid lecturers and guest tutors.

He teaches visual research development, drawing, fashion illustration, knitted textiles and fashion design and presentation skills. In addition to undergraduate teaching he supervises MA student projects that span fashion and interiors and considerate design for well-being applications.

As the department representative for student recruitment to undergraduate courses, he liaises with colleagues to maximise recruitment opportunities and effective internal communications with the University’s marketing and recruitment team.

Career overview

As a knitwear designer specialising in menswear he worked in Milan, London and Scotland. His teaching experience started with heading up knitted textile and knitwear design on the BA Textile Design course at the Scottish College of Textiles, now School of Textile and Design, Heriot Watt University. He was promoted to Head of the Department of Design and during this period re-developed the BA and MA portfolio of courses and this included the introduction of Fashion Design.

This led to increasing creative opportunities for staff and students and utilising   the knowledge of textile fundamentals of materials and processes and fitness for purpose.

With meaningful industry links and project experience, he was invited to become a member of the steering committee of the Scottish Academy of Fashion, a consortium of Scottish Fashion and Textile degree courses and the Scottish fashion and textile industry which led to seed funding from the Scottish Office. He was appointed by the Mauritian Government as part of an international team of consultants as textile design and education specialist to develop foundation level courses in design. He led and contributed to product development and innovation projects. His research interest in drawing to inform innovation in knitted textiles led to establishing with Professor Pam Schenk the Drawing Research Group at Heriot Watt University, which shares opinion and practices and its dissemination at research conferences and through publications.

Research areas

His research interests are focused on drawing for innovation in knitted textiles and fashion knitwear. He investigates if drawing in its broadest definition is a precursor for innovation in knitted textiles. This has encompassed interviews with industry designers and designer-makers and through teaching informed research activities and his own practice.

External activity

He has extensive experience as an external examiner for established undergraduate and postgraduate courses in fashion and textiles in the UK. This includes membership of quality audit panels for Teaching and Learning in HE Art and Design and course review panels as external adviser and subject specialist. He is the NTU contact for the British Fashion Council education committee.

Sponsors and collaborators

Working with colleagues, he has established sponsorship deals with leading global luxury yarn spinners who supply new and emerging yarn developments for student final year collections. He leads the course teams continued development of ‘live’ projects with industry and supports the development of new work placement opportunities for undergraduate students. He oversees external exhibitions of knitwear and knitted textile work at leading industry trade fairs across the globe.