New! Basics Fashion Design 09: Designing Accessories by John Lau

We’re very excited to have the eagerly anticipated advances of Basics Fashion Design 09: Designing Accessories by John Lau sitting in the office…from bags, footwear, jewellery and millinery, plus a whole chapter on small accessories (eyewear, scarves, ties, wristwatches, belts and gloves) we hope everyone interested in accessories design will find this an inspiring and informative read.

  • ‘A vibrant, modern and highly informative teaching aid. Demonstrates not only the importance of accessory design to the fashion industry, but also formative design and production methods. Techniques ranging from traditional craft skills to innovation methods are conveyed through an engaging and visually creative format. This is an essential read for students studying within the full spectrum of fashion related education.’
    – Mal Burkinshaw, Head of Fashion, Edinburgh College of Art, UK
  • ‘This is an impressive book – informative, inspiring and imaginative. It provides a solid foundation for starting design students interested in working within this growing market. The mixture of contemporary case studies, information on technology, manufacture and creative product development are all underpinned by fascinating insights into the history and heritage of accessory design, making this book an essential for any Fashion, Textiles or Product Design student. It is the ideal platform for students to go on to develop their own creative ideas.’
    Jane Stanton, University of Derby, UK 
  • ‘Accessories play a key role within style and the fashion industry, and this book allows students at the beginning of their creative journey to identify with the accessory, from the moment of inspiration through to the practicalities of production. It provides an insightful and inspirational foundation about accessories and their key fundamentals to those pursuing a career within the fashion design industry.’
    Georgina Hooper, University of Chichester, UK

We hope accessories designers will be inspired by the beautiful images which fill the book and interviews with figures such as  Philip Treacy. All images have explanatory captions and there is lots of information for anyone who wants to learn more about accessories design. We have posted a selection of the spreads below and you can read more about the book here.


Basics Fashion Design Designing Accessories by John Lau
Chapter 1: Anatomy of an accessory (featuring lace headpieces by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen)



Basics Fashion Design Designing Accessories by John Lau
The inset bag (featuring bags by Gucci and Fendi)



Interview with milliner Philip Treacy - whose sculptural hats have adorned the heads of royaly, prominent supermodels and celebrities such as Lady Gaga



Researching ideas for footwear design



Basics Fashion Design Designing Accessories by John Lau
The heritage of world-renowned eyewear designer Oliver Goldsmith is continued through his great granddaughter Claire Goldsmith's contemporary take on classis spectacle frame designs



Basics Fashion Design Designing Accessories by John Lau
Jewellery (featuring flexible gold bracelets by Krizia and a solid choker by Jean Paul Gaultier)



Basics Fashion Design Designing Accessories by John Lau
Scarves (featuring designs by Balenciaga and Giles)



Basics Fashion Design Designing Accessories by John Lau
Looking at woven and knitted fabrics (featured image from Jean Paul Gaultier's Autumn/Winter 2010-11 haute couture collection)


Chapter 1 – Anatomy of an accessory

Contains industry perspectives with Georgina Martin and Philip Treacy and a design task on developing an accessories library.

Chapter 2 – Creative product development

Contains industry perspectives with Scott Wilson and Stephen Jones and a design task on single board development.

Chapter 3 – Construction techniques

Contains industry perspectives with Arnoldo][Battois and Beatrix Ong.

Chapter 4 – Materials

Contains industry perspectives with Bill Amberg and Marloes ten Bhömer.

Chapter 5 – Finishes

Contains industry perspectives with Michelle Lowe-Holder and Justin Smith Esq. and a design task on developing finishing techniques.

Chapter 6 – Small accessories

Contains industry perspectives with Claire Goldsmith and Christina Brodie and a design task on sustainable design.


About the author:

John Lau has worked as a consultant for retail, branding, production and distribution. He has helped new brands develop their creative and business direction both in the UK, Hong Kong and China. He is currently a senior lecturer in International Fashion Business at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK.


All images in this post are taken from the ninth book in AVA’s successful Basics Fashion Design series, Designing Accessories: Exploring the design and construction of bags, shoes, hats and jewellery by John Lau. The book will be available to buy in September 2012. Visit