Portrait of  Joanne Norris Joanne Norris

j.s.norris2@hud.ac.uk | 01484 471433


Joanne joined the University of Huddersfield in 2005 as a Senior Lecturer teaching Fashion Design. Her post is 0.5 which enables her to continue with her private practise as a Fashion Design Consultant in Industry. Joanne has worked at the University for over 10 years firstly as a Visiting Lecturer from industry, then later to join the team as a Senior Lecturer.  Her teaching responsibilities are focused on working with the final year students in the following areas Fashion Design, Portfolio presentation and CAD skills.

Before joining the University she worked for 8 years as Head of Womenswear Design for a large Design Consultancy working alongside companies such as Next, House of Fraser, French Connection and many other High Street companies, overseeing all design briefs and critical paths.

Prior to this she started her career as a Fully Fashioned Knitwear Designer working solely on the M+S account before developing collaborations with Paul Smith, French Connection, Vivienne Westwood and overseeing sampling and development.

Joanne now has established her own design practice and has been working for the last 15 years as a Womenswear Design Consultant/Trend Forecaster alonside most major High Street stores, Mail Order and Online companies, travelling extensively throughout India, Sri Lanka and the Far East working in the factories, developing samples and overseeing prototypes. A large proportion of her work in Industry involves working closely with buying teams providing trend, colour and fabric information pre-season and throughout the season, accompanying buyers on their comparative shopping trips to New York and Europe before returning to design and finalise the ranges. Factory packs are also produced, these includes technical drawings, pantone colour references and detailed graphics/embroidery artwork. Each season Joanne attends both major fabric fairs Premiere Vision in Paris and Tissu Premier in Lille.

Working in this way allows Joanne to develop and maintain strong links within the fashion industry. It also allows her to be fully aware of the ever-changing needs manufacturers, suppliers and retailers require from a designer and, in turn, helps her to integrate this into teaching practice at the University.

Research and Scholarship

  1. As a practising fashion designer Joanne is continually working alongside other design professionals. This is a valuable link to the course and an area Joanne is keen to develop. By collaborating with these designers and companies, the students can work closely with visiting lecturers and/or work on live design projects giving them a more in-depth and realistic understanding of the fashion industry.
  2. Joanne is eager to build on the success of the Fashion Department by encouraging students to apply and enter National and International design competitions. She is keen to develop this area within the course as this has a huge benefit to the students either during their time at University or through gaining internship/placements on graduation.

Publications and Other Research Outputs


Norris, J (2014) T-shirt design pt 1 of 5 [Artefact]

Norris, J (2014) Trend Analysis [Artefact]



  • Fellow of The Higher Education Academy 2012


  • 2011 University of Huddersfield joint School Teaching and Learning Grant awarded £1,500.00 to restore and update the fabric library and online database within the Fashion Dept.

Shows and Exhibitions

  • 2006-2014 Moda Birmingham/Pure London Trade shows. Various branded womenswear ranges designed and exhibited.
  • 2008 – Bread and Butter Trade show Barcelona branded womenswear range designed and exhibited
  • 2007 – Pitti Immagine Uomo Florence trade Show “Bent and Corrupt” menswear brand exhibited assisted with sales and marketing.

External Fashion Events

British Fashion Council Graduate preview Day London exhibiting final year student work for an industry related recruitment day.

Research Degree Supervision

  • Fashion Design / research and development
  • Working as a Freelance Designer / starting your own business
  • Trend Analysis/Forecasting
  • Illustration and portfolio presentation
  • CAD / Industry standards

Enterprise Activities

Professional Activities:

  • 2007 – Present Mail Order/Online Store Womenswear Trend Forecaster
  • 2006 – Present Own brand retailer Womenswear Design Consultant Independent Stores/ Online store
  • 2002 – Present High Street Lingerie Manufacturer Womenswear Lingerie Design Consultant
  • 2000 – 2008 Own brand Womenswear Label Womenswear designer, 8 individual ranges of clothing designed each season
  • 2000 – 2008 Own brand Womenswear Label Womenswear fashion photoshoot for online e-brochure at the following locations: Miami, New York, Portugal.
  • 2008 - 2009 Debenhams Freelance Womenswear designer Red Herring
  • 2007 Michael Owen Exclusive range of womenswear clothing designed for the Japanese market.

Teaching and Professional Activities

  • THD1355 –  Module Leader for Research and Development working with final year students researching and working into sketchbooks, exploring ways to motivate and inspire students with good primary research enabling them to develop initial ideas into innovative and contemporary design work.
  • THD1358 – Module Leader for Major Collection working with final year students research, design and make of the final collection. Illustration and Portfolio presentation.
  • Personal Tutor across all years.