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Only once you’re in you can really understand what does working in Fashion really means. But how can someone who wants to work in this industry understand how does it work? From the outside it seems a fascinating but unknown business.
What you know are only the basics: there is a designer then someone produces the clothing line, there are the fashion shows and the collection is sold in store. But the truth is that there is much more. This is one of the biggest industry in the world and is not only made of Vogue, Fashion Shows and sales.
If there is a thing that I’ve learnt is that once you’re inside, your idea about this world changes.
At Glam Observer we want to let you understand how does this industry work, what there is behind everything and what are the careers of this glossy business, to show you that it’s all about glamour and clothes, shoes and accessories but ALSO lots of numbers and working people.
Today I want to share with you eveyrthing you need to know about working in Fashion:
You don’t need to study Fashion to make it
As soon as you start working in a fashion company you’ll realize that more and more are the people who don’t have a fashion background rather than those who have studied at a Fashion School. Lots of people end up working in fashion not for a choice, other like this industry and want to be a part of it but not in the creative field so they studied business or everything else not related to fashion. So don’t worry if you don’t have studied fashion you can for sure work in this industry.
What I think is that you don’t need a fashion background but it’s necessary to know the theory instead if you want to pursue a creative career. I think that if you want to become a designer or a photographer or a stylist, for example, you need to take a course to learn the basics and the techniques that you can’t learn at your university or school.
An internship is your starting point
If you want to work in this industry and get your dream job, working hard and starting from the bottom is absolutely a must and gaining the more experience you can is always the best solution, (also Serena who works at Vogue confirmed this). You cannot get your dream job just out of school if you have not gained some experience in this industry. Everyone wants you to know how does a fashion company works so, before landing your manager role, you will have to start from an internship or assist someone.
You may don’t like your first internships, but for sure you’re going to learn something useful that you can use later for your next job.
If you can, do internships during college, summer and whenever you can. You will learn how does this industry work and also what can be your career of the future because you’re going to see what everyone in a company does on a daily basis, understanding what there is behind a job title and description.
Career switches are frequent
In this industry is rare to find someone who will stay with the same company for more than 3 years. Especially at the beginning, you’re going to change lots of companies.
Excel is my (and your) best friend
There is who basically work on it all day and who do it once a week, but excel and the numbers are going to be your best friends. Even the creative careers will have to deal with it. Other careers like the buyer, merchandiser, the marketing or finance team are going to use it all day every day.
And you and excel are going to be friends from the beginning. On your first day of your internship, after your introduction to the company, you’re going to be face to face with an excel sheet. But don’t be afraid of that. Numbers explain why people do this or that, so you can really understand the reason why. Even if an industry based on aesthetics, you’ll understand that most of the decisions are based on numbers. You’ll get more confident with excel by using it and you’ll become a Master in a few weeks.
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It’s a fast-changing industry
A designer can leave from day to night and everything can change in a second. So stressful situations can happen often but remind this: we know that it’s a $ billion industry, but we don’t save lives. So just breath and treat every situation with moderation, and try to bring this calm also to those who work with you. There will always be someone more anxious and someone else who is instead composed in situations of panic. It is always better to be the person who remains composed because the agitation does not lead to anything. Face one problem at a time and you will always get the solution.
6. Networking is key
In this industry, more than any other, contacts are really important. You can meet someone who can help you enter the company of your dreams and someone else who will help you to solve a task. Everyone wants to know as many people as possible, so do not be shy to introduce yourself to others, because surely also the other person will be happy to meet someone new.