Fashion designer is a glamorous career, but there’s more to it that meets the eye. What most people don’t see is that behind the irresistible charm that comes from dressing celebrities and showcasing fashion shows across the world, fashion design really requires a tremendous amount of hard work and exceptional skills.
If you’re looking to chase your dream in the competitive world of fashion and follow in the steps of the world-renowned fashion icons, check out our list of the most essential skills required to become a fashion designer.
Artistic Abilities and Drawing Skills
Creativity is obviously the essence of fashion design. As a fashion designer, you’re taking two-dimensional fabrics and turning them into three-dimensional wearables, which means that you need to think beyond the product at hand and visualize the end design. This is why an innate sense of creativity is absolutely vital in the fashion world.
Now, your creative abilities are crucial, but they won’t amount too much if you can’t bring your ideas to life. As a fashion designer, strong drawing skills are another necessity. Having your ideas drawn out on paper or in a digital format allows you to visualize a coherent design and make adjustments where needed.
Your artistic abilities go hand in hand with your drawing skills. Together, they can give you the tools necessary to turn raw materials into beautiful, finished designs.
Solid Sewing Skills
When it comes to fashion and design, practical skills are as important as the creative ones. As the seasoned tailors who review sewing machines at the Tool Report explains that finding the right sewing machine is vital to all aspiring designers. It’s the main tool which fashion designers turn their sketches into actual wearable garments and transform their visions into a full-blown collection.
While many designers prefer not to sew their own garments, you’ll still need to know how to operate a sewing machine if you want to make it anywhere in fashion. Having basic stitching and sewing knowledge gives you a better understanding of how fabrics and materials work together as well as which types of stitches work best for different types of clothing.
A Good Sense of Business
It’s not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of fashion design, but for a designer to make it in the highly competitive fashion world, they need to be business savvy. To truly become successful in the fashion industry, you have to be able to sell your creations and establish a solid brand identity.
This requires a thorough understanding of finances, sales, and marketing. While you’ll probably have specialized teams dedicated to each aspect, you’ll still need to be able to understand how it all works. After all, no one will care about your brand more than you do, so it’s important that you possess the skills needed to market it properly.
Strong Communication and Interpersonal Skills
When you’re in the design industry, you’ll often find that communication is key. Whether you own a design corporation, work as a freelancer, or are part of a couture house’s design team, you’ll be required to convey your designs and ideas and share your own visions with the world.
This means that you’ll have to communicate effectively with different teams, from your designers and marketers to the manufacturers who supply your materials, and even occasionally to the press. Without good communication skills across the different departments, fashion designers may never see their ideas flourish and get the recognition that they deserve.
Thorough Understanding of Texture, Color, and Fabric
To create a design that’s a true representation of the vision you have in mind, you need to understand how each fabric moves, how it fits on the body, and how the different fabrics work together. In addition to a good sense of fabric, design also requires a good sense of texture and color.
Knowing whether a garment will work best in silk or velvet, and which combination of colors will be most flattering on an item of clothing, is what makes a garment stand out. It’s these details that make or break a design.
It goes without saying that besides the previously mentioned skills, a fashion designer must also have a good eye for details. As you can see, being a fashion designer is no easy task, and although it comes with a lot of pressure, it’s an extremely rewarding career choice. Don’t be discouraged; find out which areas you excel at and which skills you need to brush up on, and prepare yourself for a magical, creative journey!