What Is Fashion?
The Fashion Industry is all about the making and selling of clothes. So, whatever style of clothing is being worn by people or groups of people at the time is what people in the Fashion Industry must figure out, create, and provide. The industry has several fields of specialty: design, manufacturing, marketing, and retail sales. Each specialty involves its own set of skills, like artistic skills and “an eye” needed to create the concept of the clothing article, whether it be a garment or shoes. Artistic skills are needed to draw the sketches showing how the garment is constructed. Technical abilities are used to create the textiles and yarns and the technology to make the patterns that will be used in manufacturing. There’s also the business part of the industry: the production, communication, marketing, and retail sales of the clothing. Something critical to know, however, about the business side of fashion—just knowing about various business strategies isn’t enough. To do well in the fashion industry, business majors also need to know about the whole fashion scene. So, if you prepared for marketing in the usual business school, you may not be accepted into fashion without some background there, too.
So, which part of this industry is of interest to you? The artistic part or the technical and business aspects? Get a degree first—it will grease the skids of getting you into the field plus provided you with most of the skills you’ll need. Take some extra courses along the way in something like graphic design so that you’ll see what’s possible from a design standpoint, even if your focus will be the business side of things. And, most importantly, get ready for a very competitive—some would say cut-throat—atmosphere that you’ll need to endure until you establish yourself in the industry. You might have to start small. But, if fashion is in your blood, go for it! Some jobs you’ll find are things like Designer Assistant, Fashion Designer Intern, Fashion Consultant, Textile Designer, Home Textile Designer, Fashion Merchandizing Associate, Retail Buyer, Director of Merchandizing—Women’s, Associate Director of Fashion Marketing, Manager of Digital Content Operations, or Hunting Apparel Sales Associate.