Updated: Mar 17
Land your dream job by Allison Mann
We know the fashion industry can seem daunting, cutthroat, and competitive. With thousands of fashion retailers, designers, agencies, magazines, media outlets, and job descriptions on the market, you may find it near impossible to perfect your resume and tailor it to suit you, as well as act as a catalyst in your journey to acquire your dream job. Speaking of the resume, that’s where it all begins. How are you going to set yourself apart from the increasingly abundant number of candidates applying for the same job? We have faith that you can do whatever you set your mind to - but these couple of pointers aid in dipping your toes into your fashionista dreams are surefire, and will give you some insight and motivation to get yourself ready for that application (and eventually, interview!).
How to get into the fashion industry with no experience…
BE SOCIAL MEDIA SAVVY
Especially in a day where remote living and working situations are increasingly more normal, it would not be unheard of for brands to begin marketing entirely on social media. If you’re on the prowl for an entry-level position, vast knowledge and understanding of today’s most popular social media apps is a must. Even if it’s not listed in the job description, smaller businesses typically need help running their Instagram page or gaining more clout on the socials. You’d be able to jump at the request with no hesitation!
Not only is it important to know how to navigate and create a unique aesthetic on Instagram or TikTok - but it’s also not a bad idea to stalk your own page for a bit and take down any post that seems too unprofessional or not a great representation of yourself. Assume that at least one job recruiter will browse your pages to get a feel for who you are before deciding on taking that next step in the application process with you. Just think of it before you post something - would I want a job recruiter to see this photo? It doesn’t mean that your Instagram has to be full of LinkedIn profile pictures and accomplishments. You just want to look poised, presentable, approachable, and most importantly, like the best version of YOURSELF. This is an easy way to set yourself apart from other applicants.
UPDATE YOUR PORTFOLIO
If I could use one word to describe the fashion industry, it would be everchanging. For this reason, your portfolio should be, too. If you are a fashion designer or stylist, be sure to have a portfolio that you are consistently updating to show recruiters. Make your portfolio be a representation of yourself and your style while keeping it fresh. It’s also vital that your portfolio is always presentation-ready, as nothing would be more impressive to a recruiter than to see you prepared with an up-to-date portfolio on hand. Another way you could execute this is by creating an online portfolio, which is far easier to update as opposed to a physical hard copy!
MAKE CURRENT AND UPCOMING TRENDS YOUR BEST FRIENDS
This goes hand-in-hand with keeping an up-to-date portfolio in your possession. Experienced industry professionals will be able to tell the date of your work based on the style of the look you’ve created. It is sure to make a positive impression if you are presenting work that could easily hit the market or be sent to production for an upcoming season at the time you’re presenting your portfolio.
There are dozens of trend-forecasting media outlets and agencies that you can get a membership for and research online. WGSN and Doneger are the top forecasting websites for trends, textiles, silhouettes, styles, and lifestyle trends. Trend Union is a worldwide trend forecasting agency that focuses on macro trends which may be easier to keep in mind when creating looks that will seem updated for a longer period.
SECURE AN INTERNSHIP, THEN GO ABOVE + BEYOND
A lot of good things come out of knowing people in this industry. That’s why securing that internship can be the best thing that you do for your fashion career. Take it as an opportunity to show a higher-up what you are made of! Network, create strong relationships with your coworkers, bring new ideas to the table, show enthusiasm for your work and the industry, respect your peers, and you are a shewin’ to having that beautiful letter of recommendation placed on a silver platter right in front of you. The contacts you build during your internship could be the people who help you keep moving forward in the industry - meeting new people, discovering new job opportunities, attending events, these are all perfect networking opportunities that could be a result of completing an internship (and kicking a** at it).
These are just a few of the many things there are to know about working in the fashion industry - but adopt these habits, and you will be set aside amongst the hundreds of applicant’s job recruiters come across daily. Remember to always be passionate, open-minded, calm, and collected. And most importantly, always let your personality shine through before anything else. This is why you’re loved - you have the potential to show the world this + all of the other beautiful attributes you possess.