Be creative, contact brands directly, and above all, persevere, say the experts.
Focus your efforts on a specific area of the fashion industry.
Choose an area of fashion that interests you, says Alexandra Alberta Yeo, founder of jewelry label Alexandra Alberta. “Fashion jobs include everything from photography, styling, merchandising, buying to designing. Narrow your focus and then pursue
Lauren Gibson, who works with FAD, a charity group that promotes fashion careers, agrees. “CV’s and applications that are focused and succinct are more successful than broad ‘I love fashion’ CVs.”
It’s difficult to find fashion internships, but Gibson suggests writing many companies and approaching as many fashion designers as possible. A student of Gibson’s recently got an internship with Vivienne Westwood by sending a letter. You just have
No experience is a bad experience. For example, if you are working on the shop floor, do not see it as “just” retail. Ask if you can try out new window displays or experiment with different combinations. Take pictures as examples of your
“When I was sixteen, I mended costumes at Bolton Theatre,” says designer Stella Gibson. “It may not have been glamorous, but it showed that I was serious about a career in fashion.”
When starting out in the industry Hoette recommends making an effort to meet companies in person. This can be done by contacting labels or designers you like and scheduling an appointment at their office.
When you’re applying for internships and jobs — even when you’re emailing your CV — try to make personal contact.
There is no such thing as a bad time to establish a fashion brand.
Just because you don’t have a degree from a prestigious fashion design school doesn’t mean you shouldn’t follow your passion and start a clothing line. In fact, it could be argued that training from a prestigious fashion school isn’t quite as hands-on as many might think. With the rise of online learning programs, there is no longer a need to attend a design college to learn how to become a master tailor or seamstress.
Fashion is a creative field, but it does take a bit of technical know-how to succeed. Not only do you need to design clothes, but also package and promote them. When starting your own fashion brand there is always time left for some trial and error, but if you want to give yourself the best chance at success it’s best to make sure you know your trade before you put yourself out there.
There are a lot of different ways to pursue a career in the fashion industry. Some start from the bottom of the ladder by working in retail or interning at a boutique, while others get more entrepreneurial and get their own labels off the ground. But whether you go for an internship or get out there on your own, one of the most important things to remember is that there’s no right or wrong way to become a successful fashion designer. Just have faith in yourself and your work, and give it a go.
You can start your fashion line anytime you’re ready. But make sure to put in the time to become competent in the craft before you do.
With advice from established brands and designers, now is the perfect time to explore your dream of launching an independent fashion label. Whether you’re looking to go completely solo with the business or want to partner with someone, there are so many opportunities and routes to choose from. So if you still need a push, here it is: if you’ve ever considered starting a line, now would be the ideal time to dive in.
If your heart is set on starting a fashion company it is best to pursue a formal education in the trade. This will give you an excellent basis upon which to build your knowledge and skills, develop contacts, and secure product development funding.
You don’t have to wait for the perfect time to launch a fashion brand. It undoubtedly takes time and financial resources to design, produce and distribute high-quality clothing, but there is no reason you should put it off.
There’s absolutely no perfect time to launch a fashion brand. Being prepared for each crucial step, however, will help you determine the time that is right for you.
Ultimately the fashion industry is the fashion industry. There is no getting around it. If you can’t do it well, don’t try it at all. I am not saying there isn’t room for everyone. Quite the contrary, there is a huge opportunity for fashion lovers to make a few bucks on the side by selling uncommonly themed clothing on an etsy site or something similar. But if you really want to make a living in this fashion, you better be prepared to be a hard worker and dedicate your life to this craft.
“It is such a competitive market to get into and you need to be constantly exploring ways to make yourself stand out.”
Creative CVs are required in the creative sectors.
According to course director Alison Rapsey at Birmingham City University, the fashion world relies on creativity. Course head Elinor Renfrew believes that hiring managers will judge job applicants based on key criteria such as “can I work with this person?”
To stand out from other candidates, you need a creative CV. According to Elinor Renfrew, you should look distinct and individual in a cookie-cutter society. Similarly, Alison Rapsey believes that you must appear “distinct and
To conclude, your CV should be a creative sample of your work and not simply a list of dates and jobs. However, this does not mean you need to design it with the same level of detail as a brochure for an event-planning company. Although no one is expecting you to put one hundred per cent effort into designing it (unless you want to, in which case good luck!), it should be well designed and edited. It’s also especially important that you don’t skimp on the layout; we’ve all seen poorly designed CVs and they’re often cringe-worthy. Your CV is your chance to show off what you’re capable of and how your personality shows through your designs; make sure it’s the best it can be.
A CV is a document that needs to demonstrate your skills in the best way possible and in a way that will appeal to the person reading it, which can be tricky in a creative industry. But in areas such as fashion where each job specification is different, perhaps there is no right or wrong when it comes to design. “Different things will [attract] different employers,” Jenkinson says.
If you are applying for a degree that is related to art, design, or fashion you want to make sure that your resumé stands out. Put time into it and make sure every line has a purpose. One of the first things employers look at is the typeface. Older, more classic fonts have an air of professionalism, while something unique will draw attention to your resumé. Also, be sure to keep the margins clean so there is plenty of room for notes on what you should improve. If you are making your resumé online this will be easier to do than having it handwritten or typed up. Have plenty of space between lines so that employers can easily read what you have written.
Persistence is essential.
Jessica Gibson is an Australian fashion buyer working for Surfing World Magazine, who went to the Netherlands to study fashion marketing at HMT, followed by an internship with BCBG Max Azria. Gibson strongly recommends finding out what works for you and always keeping your options open. She said that she was young and that helped her succeed greatly because she tried everything.
Photo credit: Pexels
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