Finding Careers in the Fashion Industry

The vibrant, ever-changing fashion industry is always looking for brilliant minds with an idea of what comes next in design and merchandising. Could you be that visionary voice? What does the future hold for jobs in the fashion industry?

Check out some of the top fashion industry jobs, and learn what you can do to work your way into one of these exciting careers.

Fashion & Retail Management

If you love fashion and you’ve always wanted to own your own business, a degree in retail management could be right up your alley. You already know what shoes to pair with that little black dress for the perfect night out, but you need to learn the details of management as it relates to fashion. Courses in fashion sales, retail history, and more can give you the experience you need to enter the field with confidence.

Management Salary Points. In 2007, retail sales managers and supervisors saw mean annual earnings of $39,210, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Management positions at high-end boutiques and specialty stores might earn more, depending on location and experience.

Fashion Merchandising Careers

If you stand behind your brand, you have to be able to sell it. Fashion merchandising is an umbrella term that covers a range of careers, including: Merchandise managers ” Fashion buyers ” Fashion marketers ” Fashion sales

Even those who specialize in creating window dressings for department stores fall under the category of fashion merchandising.

Fashion merchandise managers see a lot of use in today’s fashion economy. “Today it’s the merchandise manager who carries the weight,” Marvin Traub, a retail consultant, told the New York Times. “He has an eye to the numbers.” While a degree or certificate in fashion merchandising may not be required for all careers, it can help to have the technical knowledge you can pair with you existing passion.

Merchandising Salary Points. Wholesale and retail buyers earned $53,580 in 2007, the BLS reports. That same year, purchasing managers across all industries earned mean annual wages of $90,430. While that figure goes well beyond the fashion industry, it should give you an idea of the kind of salary a skilled manager in the field might expect.

Fashion Designers

When you first think of jobs in the fashion industry, you might picture famous fashion designers like Donatella Versace or Michael Kors. While it’s true that most work can be found in fashion hubs California and New York, designers typically work all over the country, running small businesses and boutiques. Whether you’re dreaming of small-town success or a big-city dream, training in fashion design can get you there.

Fashion Design Salary Points. Fashion designers saw mean annual wages of $71,170 in 2007, according to the BLS. Most designers worked in New York or California, cementing the notion that your best chances for employment are on the opposite coasts.

While competition is keen for many careers and no degree can guarantee a job, graduates of fashion schools are still finding a viable job market. Research fashion schools to get a better idea of your potential future.

Women’s Fashion Clothes For 2010

When it comes to women’s fashion, clothes for 2010 are definitely taking the limelight. Promising to be one of the most colorful and creative years for the fashion world, designers this year are already breaking rules and starting new trends.

On the other hand, men’s fashion is taking a step back, with designers sticking to basics. When it comes to basics, it’s the men’s department that stocks up more as compared to the women’s; fashion, clothes, and shoes that are more on the adventurous side focus a little more on women than men nowadays.

This begs the question, why do women’s fashion clothes show more changes as compared to the opposite gender’s? Perhaps designers know better than to trifle with men’s clothes; after all, the average Joe is not about to experiment with pants of a shape that looks foreign to him. Women, in contrast, are more willing to explore new trends.

Thankfully, in terms of women’s fashion, clothes are becoming more and more figure-friendly. In the last few years, women’s fashion clothes included baby doll dresses, maxi dresses, loose shirts, and many other trends that flatter a woman the right way. Any unwanted pounds are well-hidden while beautiful curves are given due merit. Designers have gone a long way in designing wearable, chic women’s fashion clothes.

The year 2010 is no different. More ensembles are cropping up, with women becoming more open to new styles and cuts. Women’s fashion clothes are being overhauled; as a result, dress codes are becoming more and more open to imagination. The word “casual chic” can mean anything from pants and heels to a fun, short dress. Women’s fashion & clothes are rather unpredictable with every year that passes by, but this change is something fashionistas actually look forward to every season.

Perhaps men’s fashion will get a makeover soon, but not as radically as women’s fashion – clothes, shoes, and bags will always be more prone to modification on a woman’s body. There will still be great designers banking on women’s basics, such as Calvin Klein and DKNY; however, with savants like Alexander McQueen not holding back, there is more to come in women’s fashion clothes for 2010.

Work Wear As Fashion Clothing

Work wear has to be three things: durable, protective and comfortable. These considerations don’t always apply to fashion clothing, as women easily wear shoes that are more akin to torture implements, and men’s shoes that look sophisticated are often uncomfortable. Perhaps it’s no surprise then that work wear has been used to create industrial chic fashion: large boots and caps emblazoned with a work wear manufacturer’s name are about as fashionable as you can get. But how did this come about?

In Japan, their construction work wear is a combination of traditional Japanese clothing and practical European designs. Then in 2005, the designer, Bernhard Willhelm, took from the outfits worn by Japanese construction workers (called Tobis) to create his spring fashion clothing line. From then on, Tobi fashion clothing stores started springing up all over Tokyo, to the point that even children’s clothes were made in the Tobi style. This has also had repercussion in the construction business. Now workers can walk into construction clothing shops and be faced with colourful hardhats and overalls, making the work place also a place of fashion and fun.

One big name in fashion shoes is traditionally a manufacturer of construction vehicles. It seems a giant leap of faith to go straight from manufacturing construction vehicles to releasing a fashion footwear line. Yet, by 2005, the vehicle manufacturer had sold 57 million pairs of shoes over a period of ten years. Experts attribute the brand’s success to their success in creating reliable machinery for the construction industry. People assumed that the footwear would be as tough as their machinery and the shoes are well-respected for their durability and they exude power and strength.

But the real reason for the transformation from dirty and dangerous work to fashion clothing is that work wear suppliers have responded to the demand in the market and started customizing work wear to look mainstream and to suit all tastes. Just like sportswear manufacturers such as Adidas did by creating all different lines of urban fashion clothing, work wear manufacturers have started tapping into the lucrative consumer market too. This is a win-win situation because people are assured of comfort and durability for their everyday activities with work wear lines.