If you want to find your dream job in fashion, you’re going to need to work hard but there is an element of who you know as well as what. I’ve worked in PR, been the editor of a fashion magazine and have been making money blogging since 2009. Whether you want to be a fashion designer, buyer, model, journalist or something else entirely, this guide should point you in the right direction.
Study what you need to study
Not all fashion jobs will require university qualifications but if you can get a relevant degree, go for it. If you’re not sure whether your chosen career requires a degree, take a look at job descriptions within that field and see what the qualification requirements are. While university is often a good choice, sometimes you can do just as well without a degree. In the time you would spend studying, you could be gaining valuable experience within the industry but that all depends on you being able to find a good entry-level job.
Even while you’re studying you should be trying to get as much experience as possible. For example, if you want to be a fashion journalist, you should be blogging, attending all the shows and writing about it any chance you can get. At the very least you should be working your way up the ranks in fashion retail, even if it’s just for some extra cash while you study.
Meet the right people
The more people industry you know, the better. It’s important to attend networking sessions, get out to events and spend time with the kind of people who might be able to offer you a job in the future. Thankfully, fashion is all about events so you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to rubbing shoulders with important people.
Of course, don’t go into an event thinking all about yourself. The best connections you make during networking events are ones that go both ways. You might be able to provide social media assistance to a designer in exchange for mentoring or you might link up with a photographer to do some shoots. Think about how you can help people as well as how they can help you.
Apply for relevant fashion jobs
The is an obvious step in the search for your dream job. Keep an eye on all the fashion jobs boards to get an idea of what’s out there.
Focus on your achievements
When you apply for jobs, don’t just talk about what you’ve done but instead talk about what you’ve achieved. This isn’t always easy but think about what you’re most proud of in your career. For example:
- Won an award for a new gender-neutral collection
- Helped to implement a new market strategy for a fashion brand that increased online conversions by X
- Held a press event that brought in X pieces of coverage
- Created a new inventory system that reduced time spent on stock taking for retailers
- Voted fashion blogger of the year by X
- Grew student fashion magazine to X subscribers in one year
Find the right people to speak to
It’s likely you already know the kind of brands you’d love to work for. Even if they don’t have open vacancies, don’t lose heart. You can always send off a speculative application. The best place to start is with a call. Use a head office finder to hunt down the right phone number then call and ask for the HR department. Someone there will be able to point you in the right direction.
The same goes for following up on an application, it can never hurt to call and check on the status of yours, especially if you sent it via email.
In order to get a job in the fashion industry, you need to stand out. Whether you do that with an award-winning blog, by showcasing your designs at Graduate Fashion Week or with a video CV, it’s important that you get your work in front of the right people. If you can stand out in a crowd, you’re going to be memorable when someone is looking to fill a position.
Finally, I want to say that if you really put your mind to something, you can achieve it! Never give up and keep following your dreams.
If you have any questions, please post in the comments.