How to improve the Skills in Designing to become a good Fashion Designer?
Sometimes Fashion Designing sounds like a dream job, right? Unfortunately, it can also be one of the hardest professions to get into. However, with hard work, it can be done. There are many types of Fashion Designers. Some work for themselves, others work at normal sized companies, and others work for international businesses.
Below are the steps to becoming a great Fashion Designer:
Keep a research journal. Also write what type of fashion each company makes. These are called “fashion categories”. Some examples of categories are: footwear, accessories, junior wear, and career wear. Decide what category interests you the most.
- Start a style file or portfolio with pictures of that type of fashion. If you want to add sketches, that will only add to your notebook. Make a list of companies or brands in that category, as well as your favorite and most inspirational designers.
- Keep fashion inspiration. Buy a simple cork board and paste, pin, and tack inspirational fashion pictures on it. Put it up somewhere where you will constantly see it, like your bedroom or a ‘studio room’ if you have one.
- Take an art class in drawing and sketching. Learn to draw drapery, to understand the flow of fabric (how it drapes). You’ll start to notice the dark areas in the folds, and the lighter highlighted areas. If you can find a class that draws people or “life drawing”, take that too.
- Get a mannequin that you can pin fabric on, or drape to make designs to see how they would fit a body. Draping is another word for covering, dressing, or hanging cloth in loose folds. You can learn about this in a sewing class, or through a fashion school or program.
- Learn to sew clothes. Take a sewing or dressmaking class. Study the patterns and become familiar with sewing pattern shapes. Sew for real people (like family and friends) so that you get familiar with body shapes and fit.
- Make clothes for other people. You will learn a great deal about dealing with a customer and fitting the human body in all its variations (tall, short, petite or large). You can also charge money for your work.
- Learn about fashion trends. Also try to predict what fashion will be popular in the future.
- Learn how fashion is sold. Is it being sold in stores or online? What are the major department stores? What stores sell the category of fashion you are interested in? Also learn about “targeting your customer base.” This means knowing the type of person who will buy your fashions.
- Get professional training. Many places have public colleges or trade schools with excellent fashion training. Research it. See if schools in your area have a program in fashion. Plan to spend at least 1 to 2 years in any fashion design program.
- Seek an internship. Ask your teacher or instructor about this. An internship in Paris or at a design house in NYC would be a fantastic opportunity.
- Portfolio and Resume: When you graduate, you should have a portfolio of your best work. Usually these illustrations are of the one category that you are interested in finding a job in. A good portfolio should hold all your sketches and then you will be able have an interview and showing your designs to the interviewers. A good size for a portfolio is 14″ x 17″.
- First job. Think of your first job as ‘graduate school’. You won’t be the head designer yet, but you might work for him/her. It will be hard work, long hours, and lots of exciting times. As you work, you will move up the career ladder, working at many positions and gaining valuable industry experience.
- Sketch and design. Start at home by sketching down some of your clothing ideas on a piece of paper and keep them in a special folder or sketch pad. Keep editing it until it’s just right and explore with colors. Be creative, sketch daily, and watch ‘Project Runway.’
As a fashion designer, your job description may include a variety of tasks. Designers may be responsible for the following kinds of things:
- Researching fashion trends and staying current on contemporary styles
- Creating sketches and samples
- Choosing materials
- Attending fashion shows
- Performing business administration tasks
- Marketing products
- Supervising or working with design team members