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Furniture designer

Alternative titles for this job include

Furniture designers create designs for mass-produced furniture, furniture made in small batches and one-off pieces.

Average salary (a year)

£20,000 Starter

to

£38,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

40 to 42 variable

You could work

freelance / self-employed managing your own hours

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Explore job trends for this group.

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a furniture designer

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship

University

You could take a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in:

  • furniture and product design
  • 3D design crafts
  • interior design

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • a foundation diploma in art and design
  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information

College

You could start by doing a college course like a Level 3 Diploma in Furniture Design and Making.

This would teach you some of the skills you'll need and could help you to get a job as a design assistant with a furniture making company.

Entry requirements

You may need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course

More Information

Apprenticeship

You may be able to get into trainee or assistant designer roles through an advanced apprenticeship like:

  • new furniture product developer
  • fitted furniture design technician
  • bespoke furniture maker

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More Information

More Information

Career tips

You'll need to keep a portfolio of work to showcase your design skills to potential employers or customers.

Go to design fairs and exhibitions to keep up to date with current trends in furniture design.

Follow organisations and designers that interest you on social media and through online design and craft forums.

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the Chartered Society of Designers to get access to professional development training, technical advice and information about setting up your own business.

Further information

You can get more advice about working in crafts and creative careers from Discover Creative Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • design skills and knowledge
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • the ability to come up with new ways of doing things
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • analytical thinking skills
  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • persistence and determination
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

In your day-to-day duties you could:

  • carry out research to develop ideas
  • work to a plan or 'brief' agreed with the client
  • produce new designs or improve existing ones
  • work out costs, practicality and availability of materials
  • prepare sketches for ideas, by hand or using computer software
  • test ideas using models, prototypes and computer aided design (CAD)
  • work with manufacturers on the production process

Working environment

You could work in a creative studio, from home or in a workshop.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could progress to a more senior design position, or into a specialised area, like ergonomics.

You could also set up your own design consultancy.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Manufacturing Apprentice

  • Wage: £180.00 Weekly
  • Location: Corby

Apprentice Kitchen Sales Designer

  • Wage: £10,500.00 Annually
  • Location: Liverpool

Courses In England

Diploma Level 3 Furniture Design and Making

  • Provider: MOULTON COLLEGE
  • Start date: 06 September 2021
  • Location: Northampton

C&G 5780-30 L3 Dip Furniture Design and Making

  • Provider: BRIDGWATER AND TAUNTON COLLEGE
  • Start date: 09 September 2021
  • Location: Bridgwater

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