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Get a Job as a Fashion Designer or Start Your Own Fashion Design Business

How to Become a Fashion Designer

There is no formal education or certification required to become a successful fashion designer, but that doesn't make the feat any easier. You will need to have a combination of drawing, sewing, and design skills, a knowledge of the fashion industry, and unparalleled perseverance. Read this article to help get you started!


  1. 1

Develop your skills. Successful fashion designers have a wide array of skills, including drawing, an eye for color and texture, an ability to visualize concepts in three dimensions, and the mechanical skills involved in sewing and cutting fabrics.[1]

    • The ideal candidate will have started developing these talents at a young age and devoted hours of time to perfecting his or her craft.
  1. 2

Assemble a portfolio of your work. Your portfolio will be vital when applying to design jobs and internships, as it is your chance to market yourself. Your portfolio should display your best work, and highlight your skills and creativity. Be sure to use a high-quality binder to show that you take yourself seriously as a designer. Include the following in your portfolio:[2]

    • Hand-drawn sketches or photographs of these sketches
    • Computer-drawn designs
    • Resumé
    • Mood or concept pages
    • Color or textile presentation pages
  1. 3

Learn more. Do one (or both) of the following:

    • Get a degree in fashion design. Most programs are three or four years long. You will study drawing, color and composition, pattern-making, and draping.[3] In addition to learning practical skills like these, you will also be working with industry professionals who may serve as important contacts in the future and who can give you first-hand advice and feedback on your work.
    • Apply for an internship or apprenticeship. If school is not for you, or if you simply feel that real-world experience will be of more benefit to you, then find a fashion internship. You will need to have an impressive portfolio to apply and be willing to start at the bottom; interns are often given menial tasks like getting coffee. Again, the connections you make through your internship or apprenticeship will be vital as you pursue your career in fashion, and working with industry professionals will give you an opportunity to pick up important skills first-hand.
  1. 4

Get educated about the business side of fashion. Being a successful fashion designer not only requires talent and creativity, it also requires a knowledge of the business and marketing aspects of the fashion world. Keep yourself updated on the happenings in the fashion industry by regularly reading trade journals like Women's Wear Daily and Daily News Record.[4]

    • Many fashion design programs include courses in marketing.[5] Some programs/majors highlight marketing more than others, so be sure to do ample research on the coursework involved in the program you choose.
  1. 5

Choose your location wisely. If you are seriously considering a career in fashion, you should live in a city with a thriving fashion industry. According to the Global Language Monitor (GLM), the following cities were the top fashion capitals of the world in 2012, in descending order:[6]

    • London, England
    • New York, US
    • Barcelona, Spain
    • Paris, France
    • Madrid, Spain
    • Rome, Italy
    • Sao Palo, Brazil
    • Milan, Italy
    • Los Angeles, US
    • Berlin, Germany




  • The fashion industry is extremely competitive; only pursue a career in fashion if it you are 100% devoted to the field.
  • Working as a designer can be a physically strenuous career. You will need to be willing to work unexpected long hours to meet deadlines.




Get a Job as a Fashion Designer or Start Your Own Fashion Design Business

As a fashion designer, you will have a creative and exciting career that many people only dream about.

Design by Louis de Gama

There are many fashion design career paths for you to choose from. Some fashion designers work for top houses such as Tommy Hilfigerand Chanel. Others are employed by mass-market manufacturers of men's, women's and children's apparel.

Or you could start your own fashion design business, establishing a distinctive style and overseeing fashion creation from initial concept to manufacturing and distribution.

In this field, there is a long history of people rising from humble beginnings to become fashion designer stars.

  • Laura Ashleygot her start as a secretary.
  • Vera Wang began designing when she became engaged at age 39 and couldn't find a suitable wedding gown for the mature first bride.
  • Ralph Laurenwas born into a middle-class family who lived in the Bronx, and used to buy suits with his pocket money at age 12. He is now one of the richest and most famous fashion designers in the world.

Of course, it takes hard work, creativity, and a true passion for fabulous designs to achieve success as a fashion designer, but you can break into this career much more quickly and easily with theFabJob Guide to Become a Fashion Designer. In this guide you will discover how you can get started and succeed as a fashion designer.

Guide author Peter J. Gallanis is former associate editor of a leading fashion retail magazine. The experts who share insider advice in this powerful how-to guide include:

  • Stan Herman, President of the Council of Fashion Designers of America
  • Louis de Gama, winner of the New Generation Designer award from the British Fashion Council
  • Linda Lundström, who designs and manufactures her own lines of women's fashions sold in more than 350 retail stores
  • Plus more than two dozen other fashion industry professionals and fashion designers.

The guide covers topics of vital importance if you want to learn fashion design, get hired as a fashion designer, or start your own fashion design business in the United States or Canada, plus helpful advice for starting a fashion design business in any country. It includes:

Date: 2015-12-11; view: 1046

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