Pointers on How to Become a Fashion Designer

How to become a fashion designer may seem like a glamorous proposition filled with promises of working in the world of clothing, accessories, runway models and photoshoots. But like all things in life, this isn’t as easy as it sounds. Only a handful of fashion designers really end up becoming famous, with their brand names known around the world, like Ralph Lauren or Alexander McQueen. The majority of fashion designers end up working for fashion brands that produce for the mass market, creating basic and ready-to-wear items.

If you really want to enter the fashion industry, here are some initial steps on how to become a fashion designer that will boost your chances of making it in this big, bad fashion world.

Know your abilities.

Do you have the artistic talent, creativity and imagination it takes to become a fashion designer? Have you tried a hand at sketching pieces that are unique and reflect your own style and personality? If all you can draw are stick people and you think that teal is something to drink, well then this may not be the best industry for you, especially if you want to be successful. Talents are innate, and if you find that you have a natural flair for colors, patterns, designs, symmetry and proportions, then this is your first weapon on how to become a fashion designer. Put together a portfolio of your work; this will not only be the key to an educational background, it will serve as your resume once you formally enter fashion.

Expand your horizons.

You will never be able to get to where you want if you stick to your comfort zone all the time. Branch out – take sewing or pattern-making courses, develop skills in design software programs, enroll in a fashion degree, go to trainings and seminars on the subject, even if it seems to be about something as simple as the history of buttons. Read fashion magazines, watch out for fashion shows you can go to, keep up with the current trends, browse the web for what’s in and what’s what in pop culture, what the controversies are in fashion and so on. This is all very important in how to become a fashion designer, because you’ll need to be constantly updated so that you know what you’re getting into and what the competition is like.

Make your connections.

Start your fashion career by getting an internship or any entry-level job related to the industry. Once you’re in, make as many connections as you can, from small to big. Don’t underestimate the power of who you know; even the mail-room boy might be able to help you in the future. Include connections in all possible areas of fashion, meaning don’t just stick to the more established designers and the bosses. Get to know the advertising and marketing team, the merchandise display and salespeople, the photographers and editors, and you’ll have a wide network of valuable names that will come in handy once you’ve managed to establish yourself. How to become a fashion designer isn’t an easy path, but like all dreams, with enough hard work, you’ll get there.

Become a Fashion Designer With Creativity and Passion

To become a fashion designer, you must be a very creative person with an eye for style. Fashion designers are people who conceptualize and create outfits that clothing companies will sell to consumers. They follow current fashion trends and determine what people will consider stylish and fashionable.

Fashion designers often know that it is an interest of theirs at young ages. As children they liked to dress themselves and their toys in different outfits and liked to come up with new and interesting ways to wear and match different accessories. They also generally take an interest in fashion magazines and celebrity fashions at an early age as well. However, if you are interested in becoming a fashion designer and you have an eye for what looks good on people, there are many opportunities to get into the business.

As you would expect, in order to become a fashion designer, you must have a great interest in fashion trends and clothing. It is a good idea to follow fashion magazines and watch fashion shows to get ideas for new designs and trends. Try to determine what will be popular in the future and think of outfits that could fit these new trends.

If you don’t already, it is a good idea to learn how to sew and make clothing. Though a professional designer is not usually required to create the clothes themselves, having a knowledge of how clothes are made will help in the design process. It is also good to have these skills in order to create basic prototypes of your design ideas so that you can more easily promote them.

As a fashion designer, one of your main jobs is to sketch the designs for your clothing ideas so others will know what your new outfit is intended to look like. A good fashion designer must be able to produce detailed and accurate designs for their clothing ideas. Part of this is having a knowledge of different cloths and materials, knowing how to draw accurate body proportions, as well as the ability to choose and mix colors.

If you do not know how to sketch designs properly or effectively, it may help to go to a design school or take design classes. Though a degree in fashion design is not required to find a job, it is extremely helpful because it lets potential employers know that you have a working knowledge of the industry as well as how to draft accurate designs. Many colleges and universities offer programs in fashion design and you can choose to take a two year or four year track.

Whether you decide to attend a school or not, be sure to keep a portfolio of the work you have done. When you apply for jobs, you should be able to produce a number of sample designs that you have come up with. This will give your clients an idea of your sense of style.

Do whatever you can to learn about the industry. Read magazines, talk to professionals, watch TV programs, and whatever else you can do. The more you know, the better chance you will have in achieving success as a fashion designer.

What a Summer in Milan Can Do for a Fashion Designer

Milan, Capital of Fashion

Milan is the fashion capital of the world. This is the place where it all happens because the city revolves around fashion and great design. In Milan, the biggest offense you can commit is having an imitation purse. This is the reason why people who want to learn about fashion often dream about attending a fashion school in Milan, but the idea of living in Italy for years can be intimidating–not to mention expensive. That is why designers should consider an intensive, summer program instead.

So what can an up and coming fashion designer hope to gain from summer school in Milan?

1) Experience – Being in the center of the fashion capital means that you have the chance to see your education in action. You have a chance to see just how fashion works in the real world. Experience is something that you truly need when you want to be the best at something. Attending a design school in Milan is the fashion equivalent of a soldier going through boot camp in Afghanistan.

This experience will look great on a resume and help a young designer get in the door of the real decision makers back in the States because experience is the best teacher. Here is a little secret about resumes–executives rarely read them word for word. Basically, if a company is hiring, the boss will skim through a stack of resumes looking for any interesting detail that sets a person apart. Having the name of a fashion school in Milan on a designer’s resume, combined with some great looks and styles in their portfolio, might be the winning combination to landing that dream job. Rubbing elbows with the fashion elite in Milan will inspire new design ideas while toughening a designer up to be able to handle rejection and harsh criticism.

2) Competition – Since Milan is the fashion capital, it is only natural that people all over the place are competing with each other for the top spot. This will help the new designer become more competitive when they are launching their new line and establishing their presence in the business. Stiff competition is the best thing that can help the development of new talent in fashion design. By going to a summer fashion school in Milan, designers will be putting themselves through a trial by fire.

3) Discipline – Because of the high expectations of fashion schools in Milan, a new designer will learn how to be disciplined and get things done on tight deadlines. Fashion, although it involves creativity, requires a lot of discipline and downright hard work in order to be successful.

4) Opportunity – When attending a fashion school in Milan, there will be all kinds of contacts and opportunities available. Attending a fashion summer program in Milan means having the opportunity to scout the industry for niches while still having the freedom of being a student. Because of this, a designer who stands out in Milan, will be on the fast track to finding a job within the fashion industry. Establish connections and get to know the big players. Also, don’t attend a program unless it will also be able to supply some contacts in order to help a new designer get started in a career in fashion.