Fashion is a billion dollar industry. Many people know early on in life that they’re destined to work in fashion, and a few somehow fall into it along the way. Whichever camp you belong to, we’ve got some tips for you on how to get your first job in fashion.
8 tips to getting your first job in fashion:
- Know everything that goes on in the fashion industry. If you happen to run into an important contact you don’t want to be caught looking ignorant. If you want to be part of fashion, you have to know fashion; and that doesn’t just mean what’s currently on trend. Study fashion history whether formally or on your own. As this fashion news director points out, “you need to know the history in order to appreciate the relevance of why something is important today.” Check out this list of top fashion books and get started.
- Attend as many fashion industry events as possible. This is especially true if you live in a large city like New York where many events are free. These are great places to meet people in the industry, and you can learn something form nearly anyone you meet. Make sure to be a good listener and ask for further introductions. The fashion industry is a small world.
- Seek out the advice from an industry mentor. Once you’ve made a good first impression, follow up and ask to meet face-to-face. While meeting, be open about your goals and aspirations. Ask for and listen to advice. Consider this person a mentor. You can hope your meeting may end up at a new job, but don’t expect it or ask for it. Be grateful for any advice you do receive and remember it.
- Gain valuable work experience through internships, which can (hopefully) lead to full-time paid jobs. Try to vary your internships as well, which will help you best understand your strengths and where you most enjoy working. A fashion PR job is very different from styling, for example. While interning, ask for feedback and recommendations from colleagues to see where they feel you’d best fit.
- Express a passion for the exact job you’re interviewing for – be direct. Maybe it’s true that you’re not quite sure yet which area of fashion you’re most interested in, but another truth is that you only interview for one job at a time. Make sure you’re excited about that particular job while interviewing for it. Don’t make the mistake of mentioning another type of job you might enjoy or you risk turning off your interview. And, of course, dress for success!
- Show your personality. Don’t get too caught up in being perfectly styled and professional. Remember that many people want to break into the fashion industry. What makes you different? What unique strengths or experiences do you have that will help the company you’d like to work for?
- Create and regularly update your professional portfolio. Just like an elevator pitch, job seekers should have an easy way for potential employers to view their previous work.
- Work with a staffing agency, such as Adecco Creative & Marketing. Fashion companies regularly turn to agencies to help them find new talent. Oftentimes a temporary role from a staffing agency is the perfect foot-in-the door fashion industry hopefuls need. See also: Why Temp Works to Get Your Foot in the Door.
New fashion jobs
The good news is that with the advent of new technologies and marketing strategy, there are expanding needs for all types of skill sets in the world of fashion.
Below are just a few examples of the types of jobs we at Adecco Creative & Marketing place:
- Accessory designer
- eCommerce specialists
- CAD designer
- Graphic designers
- Fashion designers
- Fashion planners & buyers
- Fashion CAD designer
- Product developers
- Project mangers
- UX/UI designer
- Visual designer