How Do Teenagers Start in Fashion designing?
The chances of becoming America’s next Betsy Johnson or Donna Karan are greatly improved by pursuing the dream early on. Teens interested in fashion design should first set their career goal and then pursue their passion. To jump on the fast track, develop design skills such as fashion illustration, sewing, tailoring, draping and pattern making during high school. That is also the time to build a portfolio; design sketches weigh heavily in the college admission’s process. Additionally, pad the chances for career success by taking an entry-level job in retail and spread your reputation locally by sewing and designing for friends and acquaintances. Lastly, sharpen business savvy in preparation for managing a fashion line. Remaining focused amidst turbulent teen years requires great dedication.
Increase the likelihood of fashion design success by making it an official goal. Write it down. Describe in detail your future career. Collect tangible evidence such as illustrations, samples of your work, stories of your favorite designers that inspire you and pictures of collections that you love. Create a place in your room to store this treasure trove of inspiration. Visit this space often and review your collection. Reread your goal. Visualize your future career. This will help ground you and keep you focused throughout the teen years.
Industry SkillsLearn all of the skills associated with fashion design. This skill set includes sewing, tailoring, draping and flat pattern making, illustration, and fashion design related software. Go beyond just learning these skills; become expert at them. Take pride in being the best. Art classes, sewing classes and computer classes will be your first steps into your chosen profession Check out the career center at your school, find any vocational training classes that may be offered. Check the local community colleges for night classes that allow younger students to attend. Stores that sell sewing machines often also have low-cost sewing classes available.TechnologyVisit the Internet and research which fashion design software is being used to create patterns and illustrate designs. Order free trials if they are available and self-learn the latest technology. Become a master on the computer, as it is the future of the industry. Take classes to increase your proficiency whenever you can. Don’t be limited by class offerings. Use your computer to learn on your own. Download tutorials from software manufacturers and check out workbooks from the library. Use this time to learn all you can about fashion and about the skills you will need to createstyle.ConnoisseurBecome a connoisseur of all things fashion. Study your favorite designers. Become familiar with their stories through their official websites and from library biographies. Every month, read the major fashion magazines from cover to cover. Pay special attention to the ads, which often focus on upcoming trends. The library will have copies of many of these magazines if they are out of your budget. At the library study, Women’s Wear Daily and W, which are industry publications. Read your local newspaper’s fashion section, which often comes out on Thursdays. Visit boutiques and stores weekly. Study the fashion displays, and note the trends and similarities in styles between the different designers. Note the differences between fashions for different markets. Teen departments are different from career wear or couture sections. Learn each market by studying the clothing departments of major stores.Business SavvyBuild your business savvy. If you make it to the top of fashion design, you will rule an empire. Think of the many divisions within Ralph Lauren or Donna Karan. Ralph Lauren is more than a designer; he is a master merchandiser. Learn all you can about salesmanship. Working a retail position in a clothing store will be a first step toward that. Read books on sales and marketing. Take classes and workshops. Use every available second to devour information and to keep your GPA high.
Tools of the Trade
The sooner you acquire a sewing machine, fit mannequin, computer, sketch book and portfolio, the better off you are. Save your money for tools of the trade. Once you have the basics, use spare time to practice draping on your mannequin, perfecting difficult sewing applications or drawing fashion figures.
A certificate or degree in fashion design will be necessary. Use time now to study colleges offering fashion design programs. Keep your grades up and work toward a scholarship. Send away for catalogs and applications. Share your goals with your guidance counselor, who may be able to give you excellent input.
Develop a local reputation. Share your style expertise with your peers. Become the trendsetter of your group. Sew and create prom dresses for your friends. Print business cards and hand them out. Carry your portfolio. Seek part-time entry-level work in an industry-related position. Begin living the dream.