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How To Gain Fashion Design Experience Early In Your Career

by Pierce King. Published Tue 27 Nov 2018 13:52, last updated: 27/11/18

The fashion industry is one of the most exciting and competitive areas to get into. There are many successful fashion designers that have made a name for themselves through high quality merchandising and expert branding focus.

Students might have their own dreams of getting into the fashion industry. However, the right position or job might be hard to come by at first. Many positions will require some experience. In order to start your career in fashion, here are some steps to gain experience while you are still in school.

Participate In Extracurricular Activities

To get a taste of the fashion world, join relevant clubs at your school. Almost every school has some type of club related to fashion. Even if there is no fashion club, join a student organization that puts on events. Then, you can organize your own fashion holiday collection event as a fundraiser for the club. In any case, participating in extracurriculars will build your skill set to collaborate with others, take on new challenges and learn from your mistakes. These are all valuable skills to have when you are looking to gain experience. Moreover, when you go to apply for a position at a fashion boutique, you can take about all the transferrable skills and experiences you have had.

Take A Study Tour In America Or Abroad

You can prepare yourself for a career in fashion with study tours. These unique educational experiences can give you direct access to some of the most successful fashion designers around. Depending on what city you decide to study in, you could get an up-close view at various fashion jobs and roles. Moreover, programs like Project Fashion give you the technical knowledge to spot trends, sketch new designs and develop innovative styles. If you want to gain some experience while still inside a classroom environment, a study tour could be a great option for future fashion professionals.

Find An Internship In The Fashion Industry

As you get closer to joining the workforce, internships provide a huge opportunity to gain experience in the fashion industry. You will need to be humble and flexible with the role that you receive. Whether it’s picking up coffee or cleaning up a stock room, every task is an opportunity to build trust with your manager. In the beginning, it’s not as important to have a major designer or brand. In fact, many students end up gaining more experience at smaller vintage clothing shops that can give them larger responsibilities. An internship that can give you some hands on experience will give you exposure needed to apply for other entry level positions.

Land An Entry Level Fashion Job

Even if you can’t get an internship, apply for entry level or part-time fashion jobs. These positions are a smart way to break into the industry while still maintaining your full time academics. While you are working at the position, give it 100% every hour you are working there. Say yes to every task that you can reasonably handle. Moreover, go the extra mile in everything that you do. This type of work ethic can not be ignored. In fact, you are highly likely to make a lasting impression your manager. Even if they are not impressed, your coworkers will appreciate the attitude and energy that you bring to the everyday grind. Inevitably, these actions in an entry-level role can lead to bigger and better opportunities down the road.

Start Networking In The Industry

Whether it is through your clubs, school, internship or job, networking is a powerful way to get experience in the fashion business. Many companies hire internally from their own networks. It certainly helps to start building your own network of people who know you to be hardworking and trustworthy. Then, you can ask them to refer you to any of their contact in the industry or take you to some fashion events. These types of connections can put you in the right circles for a successful career in fashion.

Gaining experience in the fashion industry can be exciting and fun when combined with a strong work ethic. Start by getting involved in extra curriculars at school. Take a study tour that specializes in a fashion experience. Next, apply for internships in the industry. Or, get a part time job to learn what it’s all really about. Finally, build relationships with other professionals in the industry who could potentially open up new opportunities. If you follow these steps, you can gain valuable experience early on in your fashion career.



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