Are you yearning to explore your creative side in the world of fashion, but don’t have any professional experience? You’re not alone. Many successful fashion entrepreneurs start fashion careers with little to no experience, education, or training.
Even if your resume says you’re an accountant, computer programmer, or public relations manager, it’s possible for you to successfully pivot your career into the world of fashion.
Read on for tips on how to start making fashion design, fashion merchandising, or fashion buying your new 9-to-5 job.
1. Take an online fashion design class
Fashion is intense. It can change in an instant. It’s important when you’re breaking into fashion to know as much as possible. The fashion industry is always evolving, so it’s never too late to pick up some new skills and learn as much as you can about fashion design from the experts.
You can watch Marc Jacobs teach fashion design in the Marc Jacobs Masterclass. Watch from anywhere with a wi-fi connection for the reasonable price of $90. The course will help you learn fashion design, how to choose fabrics, and how to develop your own collection. The best part about it is that you don’t have to take the entire online class at once. You can log in and out as your schedule allows.
2. Work for an online startup retailer
The best way to get your foot in the door and land your first job in fashion is to reach out to fashion startups via social media or their website.
Do a quick Google search of “fashion startups”, and reach out via email to tell them about your skills. Offer your help as an unpaid intern to start building experience in fashion. You could:
Offer to help sell products at their pop-ups or trade shows
Create and write content for them
Help them analyze their numbers or sales
Startups are always eager to recruit interns with complementary skills, so if you have a career in marketing, sales, public relations, or web design, a fashion startup will definitely find your application interesting.
3. Launch your own fashion business
Fashion enthusiasts usually love fashion for the culture that it injects into society and how it inspires us through the decades. If you’re considering a career change into fashion, you most likely have an idea for the type of clothing line you want to create or a niche market you’d like to serve.
The best way to pivot into a new career in fashion is to connect with a clothing manufacturer via a service like MakersValley and bring one of your apparel designs to life. You can find a garment in your wardrobe that fits you or your target customer perfectly, then upload photos of this garment into a listing on the MakersValley platform to start getting quotes from Italian manufacturers to make you a sample of your garment.
Only once you get your factory sample in your hands will you know if you’ve truly found your passion in fashion design.
4. Research fashion
As in any industry, knowledge is power. It’s important that you know as much about fashion as possible so you can strike up a conversation with anyone you happen to meet in the industry.
Some great ways to digest as much fashion knowledge as possible are:
Follow fashion influencers on social media
Subscribe to the Business of Fashion newsletter
Follow major fashion brands like Chanel, Moschino, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Valentino, Versace and any others that you like the most on social media
5. Talk fashion
Watch fashion buyers comment on the latest collections, by famous brands, on YouTube. Just try searching “Moschino Collection 2019” and scan the video results that pop up.
By studying how fashion buyers talk about collections, you can fine-tune your own private label fashion collection and sound credible when you talk about fashion to others in their lingo.
How are you looking to break -- or how have you broken! -- into the fashion industry? What experiences helped you in your professional fashion journey?
Co-founder & COO @MakersValley! Tiffany is a an operations guru, blogger, and programmer-in-progress from Texas. You can often find her typing up a storm at the local coffee shop, drumming up conversation with strangers, catching a plane to another country, or reading a good book.