When you were a little girl perhaps you dreamed of starting your own clothing line, becoming a stylist to the stars, or even working for a major design company. Whatever your fashion goals, it’s never too late to chase after them and become the fashionista you always dreamed you’d be. The first step to shifting gears would be to go back to school. Unless you’re currently working in the fashion industry, you’ll need traditional schooling to help build a solid foundation before you market yourself to the world. Let’s talk a bit about what going back to school would entail and tips for landing a gig after graduation.
A Degree in Fashion Merchandising
Although there are a lot of fashion degrees out there to consider, a masters degree in fashion merchandising is a common choice for those looking to go into the fashion and retail industry. They are essentially the who’s who of the fashion world in that they know about the latest designs and trends before they ever hit the market. The degree, when obtained will provide you with the ability to obtain positions that include a fashion designer, fashion buyer, fashion director, merchandise display artist, product development manager, and more. Classes you might take when obtaining a fashion merchandising degree include:
· Fashion branding and promotion
· Consumer behavior in fashion
· Technology in fashion
· Retail merchandise management
Each of these classes will help to further your understanding of the fashion industry, its consumers, and how you can leverage this to your advantage once you get a degree.
Tips for Adjusting
Going back to school does require an adjustment period. Meeting new people, getting in the process of learning again, and doing it all while managing a family and working full-time can be a lot. Here are some ways to adjust when returning to school as an adult:
Join social groups – the fashion world is all about who you know. Now is the time to start mingling. You never know who you might come across that can be beneficial in helping you get your start. Attend social events held on campus and consider joining clubs or groups as a way to get out of your shell.
Manage your time wisely – be sure that you don’t overload yourself when scheduling your fashion courses. Remember you still have a home and work to tend to and the more stressed you are, the less likely you are to succeed. Start with a class or two and if you can handle the workload, add a few more the next semester. You might even consider online classes if you’re dealing with serious time constraints.
Make sure your tech is on point – much like your fashion needs to be spot on as you’re learning to become a fashionista, you also need to make sure that your technology is on point. A lot of what you’ll be learning and doing will be done electronically which means you’ll need to have access to things like a smartphone and/or a tablet for taking notes, turning in assignments, and even communicating with professors.
How to Land Your Dream Job
Once you’ve done the work and obtained the degree in fashion merchandising it’s time to put it to work for you. As the fashion industry is a bit saturated with hopefuls, you’ll need to put forth great effort to set yourself apart from the competition. Here are some quick tips for landing your dream job:
· Always dress to impress with a degree in fashion, you must find a way to combine your personal style with professional trends
· Consider entry-level positions or internships until you’ve developed a portfolio
· Update your social media to reflect your passion for fashion and begin networking online
· Consider a side hustle like a personal stylist to build your reputation
· Be diligent and continue to develop your talent with real-world experience
When switching into an industry as ever-changing and populated as fashion, going back to school to build a foundation is the best place to start. Once you’ve got the education under your belt, taking steps towards building your brand is the next step. Get social, network, and even show off your talents for free to get your name out there. Eventually, someone will recognize the true skill and talent you have and hire you.