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What Does it Take to Be a Fashion Designer?

Fashion Designer Example Design clothing and accessories. Create original designs or adapt fashion trends.

Fashion Designer Responsibilities

  • Test fabrics or oversee testing so that garment care labels can be created.
  • Sew together sections of material to form mockups or samples of garments or articles, using sewing equipment.
  • Visit textile showrooms to keep up-to-date on the latest fabrics.
  • Sketch rough and detailed drawings of apparel or accessories, and write specifications such as color schemes, construction, material types, and accessory requirements.
  • Collaborate with other designers to coordinate special products and designs.
  • Develop a group of products or accessories, and market them through venues such as boutiques or mail-order catalogs.

Things a Fashion Designer Should Know How to Do

These are the skills Fashion Designers say are the most useful in their careers:

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

  • Fashion Illustrator
  • Fur Stylist
  • Fur Designer
  • Stylist
  • Furrier Designer

Is There Job Demand for Fashion Designers?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 23,800 jobs in the United States for Fashion Designer. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 2.5% which is below the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 600 new jobs for Fashion Designer by 2026. The BLS estimates 2,300 yearly job openings in this field.

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The states with the most job growth for Fashion Designer are Idaho, Utah, and Colorado. Watch out if you plan on working in Pennsylvania, Vermont, or South Carolina. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

How Much Does a Fashion Designer Make?

The average yearly salary of a Fashion Designer ranges between $36,420 and $155,470.

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Fashion Designers who work in New York, California, or Alabama, make the highest salaries.

How much do Fashion Designers make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $98,380
Arkansas $61,800
California $95,250
Colorado $63,110
Connecticut $72,280
Florida $57,770
Georgia $72,010
Hawaii $50,800
Kansas $65,490
Maine $80,540
Maryland $64,500
Massachusetts $77,990
Michigan $62,070
Minnesota $52,540
New Jersey $69,640
New Mexico $67,960
New York $95,830
North Carolina $71,330
Oregon $75,710
Pennsylvania $54,840
South Carolina $75,110
Texas $76,240
Utah $43,610
Washington $66,600
Wisconsin $45,940

Tools & Technologies Used by Fashion Designers

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Fashion Designers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Illustrator
  • Corel CorelDraw Graphics Suite
  • Financial accounting software
  • Corel Painter
  • Autodesk SketchBook Pro

Becoming a Fashion Designer

What education is needed to be a Fashion Designer?

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Where Fashion Designers Work

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The table below shows the approximate number of Fashion Designers employed by various industries.

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You May Also Be Interested In…

Are you already one of the many Fashion Designer in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:

References:

Image Credit: Szilas in the Budapest Museum of Applied Arts via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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