The market volume of the fashion industry has been steadily growing for the past decade, with its total revenue projections for 2023 overshooting the 1 Trillion mark. This unwavering growth can partly be explained by the growing share of the youth population, cheaper and more efficient manufacturing processes, and the subsequent increasing affordability and accessibility of clothing worldwide.
Taking your first steps on a new venture, especially a life-defining one like a career, can be disorienting and anxiety-inducing, so let us guide you through with a list of essential considerations you will need on your way to becoming a fashion designer. Here are our 5 top tips.
- Built a Strong Online Presence
These days, you don’t matter, and you don’t exist without a strong online presence to present you to the world and speak for your strengths. As a prospective fashion designer looking to take your first career steps, displaying drafts and samples of your early work on online platforms will help serious companies discover you and take you seriously. Creating portfolios and catalogs of your best work on social media sites and purpose-built platforms will allow you to craft your image, build your brand name and gain authority, recognition, and a wider reach.
Examining the hype and feedback your work creates will also give you and your prospective employers a first taste of how your work will be received by wider audiences.
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2. Start Building Your Basal Skills Early
You can lay the foundation of your knowledge and skills way before you open the doors of a campus. Here’s a quick rundown of what that foundation should consist of.
- Drawing & sketching
You need a reliable way of visualizing your ideas and conveying your vision to others. Drawing is the essential medium between ideation and demonstration.
- Learning software programs for design
There’s only so far you can get today with a pen and paper. Eventually, you will have to digitize your design, with promises in future technological advancements like holograms, 3D imaging, and VR potentially eliminating the hand-drawing stage altogether. It will greatly set you forward if you’re competent with relevant computer programs and familiarize yourself with design software early on.
Back to fundamentals. Sewing skills may seem outdated and obsolete; after all, car designers don’t bolt the part together themselves. But there’s a certain value to starting your learning curve from basics and being hands-on with your product. Sewing comes in handy during the stages of sampling, prototyping, and experimenting with your ideas.
Try to routinely flex your creative muscles by dreaming up designs, crafting them with on-hand means, and reimagining popular designs with your own spin.
- Communication Skills
Understanding different peoples and their cultures will also help you gauge varying tastes and preferences across the globe. Engaging in alternative languages and cultures has been linked to a more developed and diverse mindset. But before you’re there, use Thewordpoint — the highest-rated localization service based on user feedback and expert evaluation.
3. Weigh Your College Options
Most students are reluctant to risk pursuing opportunities at out-of-line locations regarding fashion design, like Germany or Asia, and instead default to more obvious choices, such as Italy or France. Letting your choice be ill-guided by the location and reputation alone can be misleading and have you miss out on a lot of great opportunities. Remember that everyone else follows the same thought process, meaning those famous colleges are overflowing with demand and competition.
A lot of highly promising fashion companies and design schools have been popping up all over the world that fly under the radar or are at the initial stages of ascent. Many of these schools offer industry-grade education with the added benefit of lower costs due to the lack of street cred. Opting for one of those can help you jump the success train while it’s still accelerating and receive a quality education at affordable costs. More on this here — where you can get a more detailed overview of the world’s best fashion-oriented universities.
4. Explore Fashion Trends
Famously, the main conundrum in the field of fashion is predicting future trends. When starting from scratch, it helps to build on top of the knowledge that existed before you. Study the history of fashion and the dynamics of its trends to develop a better feel for what drives fashion and place your finger on the pulse of this shaky industry.
Clearly, fashion design is as promising to a career seeker as it is yet immune to becoming irrelevant due to changing times. But fashion is no exact science. There is no underlying formula or a definite set of criteria determining one’s success in the field. Fashion, like art, is esoteric, impulsive, and erratic, so the bulk of your future success will depend on your natural talent and imbued feel for people’s desires. The fashion industry is primarily driven by creativity and artistic ability, not acquirable skills or practical & economic considerations. All your hard work will be in vain if you lack talent. But if you do find passion and talent in yourself, our list of advice should help you convert that into a tangible success!