Related job titles are: Designer, Fashion Designer, Design Director, Costume Designer, Apparel Fashion Designer, or Clothing Designer.
How Much Does a Fashion Designer Make? | Fashion Designer Salary
The median yearly salary for fashion designers was $64,530 in May 2010 (the most recent data available). This median salary is simply the salary where half the employees earned more and half earned a lesser amount. Employees in the lower 10 percent had an annual salary less than $32,500, and those employees in the top 10 percent earned greater then $130,890.
What Does a Fashion Designer Do? | Job Description
Fashion designers create original clothing, accessories, and footwear. They sketch designs, select fabrics and patterns, and give instructions on how to make the products they designed.
After they have an initial idea, fashion designers try out various fabrics and produce a prototype, often with less expensive material than will be used in the final product. They work with models to see how the design will look and adjust the designs as needed.
Although most designers first sketch their designs by hand, many now put their sketches online with computer-aided design (CAD) programs. CAD allows designers to see their work on virtual models. They can try out different colors, design, and shapes while making adjustments more easily than they can when working with real fabric on real people.
How to Become a Fashion Designer?
Most fashion designers entering the industry have some formal education where they learn design skills, including how to use computer-aided design (CAD) technology. Employers usually seek applicants with creativity, as well as a good technical understanding of the production process for clothing, accessories, or footwear.
Fashion Designer Classes and Courses | Degree Programs
Although career college education is not required for fashion designers, many take classes or earn an associate's degree or bachelor's degree in a related field, such as fashion merchandising, art, or design that can improve their knowledge. For many artists, including fashion designers, developing a portfolio—a collection of design ideas that demonstrates their styles and abilities—is essential because employers rely heavily on a designer’s portfolio in deciding whether to hire the individual. For employers, it is an opportunity to gauge talent and creativity. Students studying fashion design often have opportunities to enter their designs in student or amateur contests, helping them to develop their portfolios.
Fashion Designer Jobs | Who is Hiring?
Some growth is projected for this occupation in specialized design firms and for self-employed fashion designers. Clothing and accessories designers will be needed to design comfortable and more affordable items for the mass market and everyday wear. In addition, as new clothing technology is developed, fashion designers will be needed to create garments using new fabrics, such as moisture-wicking fabrics.
Get information on paying for college using Federal Student Financial Aid Programs.