Last Updated: Thursday, June 27, 2019

Making a business with art and design

What is this?

This exemplar shows how effective learning partnerships with local creative industry professionals can help learners to develop knowledge, understanding and skills in business, as it applies to the creative industries.​

Who is this for?

​This exemplar will be useful to staff in secondary schools but may also have relevance for primary staff.

​How to use this exemplar to improve practice

The information provided in this resource, along with reflective questions, invites you to consider the impact of your own approach to broadening young people’s learning experiences and providing motivating contexts for learning.

You are invited to listen to the responses from staff and pupils about what they have gained through engaging with a local business associated with the creative industries.

Then, individually or as a team, consider the following improvement question in your own context:

1. How effectively do you create partnerships both within and out of school to broaden young people’s learning experiences and provide them with opportunities learn skills in real-life contexts?

2. What is the range of opportunities you provide for young people to learn about design and/or creativity in relation to business and the world of work?

What was done?

This project was the result of collaboration between Art and Design and Business Studies departments to develop pupils’ understanding of the links between the subjects.

Two local textile designers who run a handmade bag business called Boo Boutique were invited to the school to describe how they combined their design and business skills to build a successful business which enables them to do work that they enjoy.

The pupils then created their own designs and collaborated to develop business plans to market and sell their products.


Schools are now expected to act upon the advice provided in the Career Education Standard and this example of practice demonstrates one approach to establishing effective learning partnerships with local professionals and businesses. In addition, this study shows how learners, if given the opportunity, can clearly make the connection between their learning in school and how it relates to the world of work.

What was the impact?

Through this project, evidence was gathered that learners had:

  • developed knowledge and understanding of a local business associated with retail and the creative industries
  • developed skills and understanding of planning, presentation and promotion in relation to design products.