How to Become a Fashion Designer in 5 Steps
Research what it takes to become a fashion designer. Learn about education requirements, job duties, median wages, and job outlook to find out if this is the career for you.
What Is a Fashion Designer?
Complete a degree program
In order to get a foot in the door of this competitive industry, hopeful fashion designers need to hone their skills through a degree program. Students interested in the field can earn an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in fashion design, where they take courses in computer-aided fashion design, the history of fashion, textiles, figure drawing, and pattern making.
Fashion designers may also complete degrees in fashion merchandising to train for a job, which has a curriculum that covers merchandise planning, retail sales promotion, consumer behavior, retail management, and product development.
Sharpen skills with hands-on experience
In order to sharpen the skills needed to execute a design from an idea to the finished product, students need to get practice outside of the classroom.
This hands-on learning can be achieved by participating in an internship program with a design firm, clothing manufacturer, or personal stylist.
In addition, students can get experience by volunteering for a fashion house.
Learn the business of fashion
Behind the creative flair of the fashion industry is the business acumen needed to keep a company running. In addition to learning the creative side of the field, students should also familiarize themselves with what goes on behind the scenes—such as finance, sales, and marketing—particularly if they want to have their own fashion business.
Put together a portfolio
In order for future fashion designers to show off their talent to potential employers, they have to create a portfolio demonstrating their skills and creative sensibilities.
Students can fill their portfolio with the work they’ve done during their degree program, so it’s important for them to treat every assignment as if they were going to show their work to a future boss.
Portfolios allow people to show off a range of skills, including their sketching, sewing, and pattern making abilities.
Keep up with the trends
The fashion industry changes from season to season, so it’s important for designers to keep abreast of the trends.
This can be done by regularly reading industry journals and magazines.