FACT > Course Leaders

Associate Professor

Maarit Salolainen

Maarit Salolainen is an Associate Professor of Textile Design and Head of the MA Major in Fashion, Clothing and Textile Design. She is an experienced textile design professional passionate about bringing textile knowledge to multidisciplinary platforms. Maarit has developed higher education studies in the field of textile and surface design, focusing on renewing studio pedagogy and linking textile studies to fashion education and other design disciplines. Her book, Interwoven – Exploring Materials and Structures (2022, Aalto ARTS Books), interweaves technical knowledge, artistic expression and storytelling, making it a unique guide to mastering textile design. Alongside her academic work, Maarit works in the international textile industry. Lately, as a Creative Director for the Turkish textile mill Vanelli, she led a team of designers and engineers in developing new concepts, products and collections for international interior textile editors and brands.

Associate Professor

Kirsi Niinimäki

Dr. Kirsi Niinimäki is an Associate Professor in Fashion Research and leader of the Fashion/Textile FUTURES research group. Throughout her research she aims towards a new, holistic understanding in the field of sustainable fashion and textiles and therefore she investigate the connection between design, manufacturing systems, business models and consumption habits. Furthermore PSS Product service systems in fashion, redirective practices in fashion design leading to sustainable consumption and circular economy approach are in the core of her research interest. From 2016 until July 2020 Kirsi was the Head of the Master’s Programme in Fashion and Collection Design.

Assistant Professor

Julia Valle Noronha

Assistant Professor in Fashion Design, Dr. Julia Valle Noronha is a designer-researcher-educator that understands fashion as a major force in driving change towards more responsible futures. Her research interest explores this potential, especially from the perspectives of fashion design and wearing practices. Brazilian-born and raised, she approaches the field from an outlook that praises diversity and holds being with the earth at its core.


Designer in Residence

Ervin Latimer

Professor of Practice in Fashion Design

Starting autumn 2024

Senior University Lecturer

Annamari Vänskä

Dr. Annamari Vänskä is a Senior University Lecturer in Design Cultures. Vänskä has published widely on fashion and visual culture with the focus on class, gender, sexuality and ethnicity. Her monograph Fashionable childhood: Children in Fashion Advertising (2017, Bloomsbury Publishing). sheds light on fashion in the social context, on social meanings of fashion and clothing, and on the conflicting connotations emerging from the interface between childhood, fashion and clothing and their visual representations in contemporary visualised consumer culture. She is also the co-editor with Professor Hazel Clark (Parsons School of Design, New York) of the forthcoming book Fashion Curating: Critical Practice in the Museum and Beyond (2017, Bloomsbury Publishing) which is a critical investigation about the emerging field of fashion curating. An important part of her scholarly work is curating exhibitions.


Ilona Hyötyläinen

Ilona Hyötyläinen is Functional Clothing and Accessory Design Lecturer. Main goal in her teaching is to combine fashion and functionality. Her special inters areas are sportswear, children’s wear and print design.


Maija Fagerlund

Maija Fagerlund is a Lecturer for Textile Design at the Department of Design. She is endlessly fascinated by all kinds of textile structures and materials and loves surface and print design. Besides teaching, she works internationally as a freelance textile designer. Her main areas in teaching are woven fabrics and jacquard design, print design and surface design.


Anna-Mari Leppisaari

Anna-Mari Leppisaari is a Lecturer for Textile Design at the Department of Design. She teaches knitwear design, design for printed fabrics and textile finishing, as well as designing textile collections for fashion. She works internationally as knitwear and textile designer, and her works range from experimental artistic collaborations to commercial designs. She is interested in sustainable design and multidisciplinary collaborations.