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How to Become a Fashion Designer Without a University Degree


Who is a Fashion Designer?

A fashion designer is one who attempts to create unique styles and designs through the use of fabrics. A fashion designer is a very creative person who starts his or her journey of fashion designing from sketches and drawing of various outfits and creating them into clothes that can be worn by people or his or her targeted audience.

Fashion designers are known to design varieties of things, ranging from dresses, shoes, bags and other types of clothing. A fashion designer also supervises the development of new designs for the manufacture of clothes and clothing accessories for commercial use.

A fashion designer develops new fabrics and garment combinations of the essential details of cloth which include; line, proportion, color, and texture. Although the sewing, cutting skills, and pattern making skills are beneficial and important, they are not always the only skill needed in fashion designing as it is a very wide skill with various branches. All these are then combined to make a successful fashion designer. Most fashion designers are formally trained either in a university or college or they are apprenticed in a training center.

Getting Skilled in Fashion Designing

For you to be a fashion designer, you need to acquire some basic skills such as pattern drafting, cutting, different body shape measurements and sewing techniques. Below are listed other skills needed in fashion designing.

  • Good Communication: in fashion designing, communication is a great skill that is needed for an effective understanding of your customers about what they want and how they want it. Good communication is also necessary for relating to your co-workers and every other person involved in the making of the clothes.
  • Creativity: as a fashion designer, what would make you stand out is your creativity. How your clothes are designed and the uniqueness of each outfit. So a good fashion designer must have excellent skills in creativity.
  • Business skills: fashion designers need to have good business skills as you need to understand the details of marketing and sales concepts in order for your products to be sold. When learning these business skills, it is also paramount that you understand the market trend of the type of outfit you want to sell.
  • Sewing Skills: in fashion designing, creating the pattern, or developing new ideas is not all but you must also have excellent sewing skills in order to piece your fabrics together and get a good outcome.
  • Excellent Team Skills: in fashion designing, you will always work as a team and therefore, it is important to have team spirit as this would enable your work to be perfect. As a fashion designer, you must be able to work with everyone involved during the process of making any cloth.

Become a Fashion Designer Without a University Degree

Fashion designing is a very lucrative job which can be acquired with or without a university degree. Fashion designing is a great skill which involves the use of drawing, cutting and sewing tools to make a perfect outfit. With intensive training of up to a year or more, one can acquire this skill without visiting any university for a degree in fashion designing.

A fashion designer must first of be passionate about acquiring the skill and must pay attention to detail. Fashion designing skills can also be obtained by volunteering for a fashion event, undergoing internships and trainings and also hands on skill practise. A good fashion designer must pay close attention to various body shapes, colours which are good for different body sizes, patterns and other details needed in creating a good outfit.

A university degree may not necessarily teach you all the basic experiences you will need in the fashion industry but learning from a fashion professional will really give you the more experience you will require for this skill. These are why fashion designing can be acquired without a university degree.

10 Basic Steps

  1. Your passion: when you want to become a fashion designer, the first thing is to do is to harness your passion. Develop great interest in the skill and work hard.
  2. Develop your skills: after harnessing your passion, the next thing is to develop your skills. Successful fashion designers have varieties of skills, which may include; drawing, an eye for color and texture, and ability to visualize concepts and the skills involved in sewing and cutting all types of designs on fabrics, and making them into ready-made outfits.
  3. Get experience: you can be a successful fashion designer without a university degree by getting adequate experience from fashion professionals. It may take up to about 6 months to a year or more duration. You can also participate in fashion designing programs and internships to get this experience.
  4. Understand the business of fashion: after getting adequate experience, it is now time to learn and understand the business involved in fashion designing. How to market your products, how to get customers and how to keep your business running.
  5. Keep up with fashion trends: there is always a change in the fashion industry. Change from seasonal wears, old styles, future styles and lots more. So as a fashion designer, it is Paramount for you to keep yourself updated with the changes in the fashion trend in order to stay on top of the business.
  6. Good communication skills: in fashion designing, good communication is a very good skill because you will always have to interact with people which makes communication important. A fashion designer must not be aggressive and must know how to carry people along.
  7. Team spirit: a fashion designer must have an excellent interpersonal relationship and a good team spirit in order to be able to work with different people in the fashion industry.
  8. Relate with your competitors: in fashion designing, it is advisable to relate with your competitors to find out how to develop your business more and what you are missing out and need to make improvements on.
  9. Pay attention to details: a good fashion designer must always pay attention to details, colors and various body shapes. All these will help the designer to be creative and innovative.
  10. Good customer relations: fashion designing is a business in which you will have to relate with different types of customers and so you have to develop good customer service and relations in order to be able to deal with the different kinds of people who come to you for service.

Benefits of Fashion Designing

  • Job Satisfaction: as a fashion designer, you have job satisfaction as you work on your own terms and rules except in cases where you work for a company or fashion industry. You also get job satisfaction if you have an interest in the job then you enjoy what you do and earn as well.
  • Creativity: a fashion designer gets very creative especially when you want to make an outfit that is unique than your creative mindsets in. Creativity is a fashion designer’s top skill.
  • You can own your business: this is the reason why fashion designing is a good skill because you can set up your own business and create your own clothing line.
  • Good Income: you earn well as a fashion designer because people wear clothes and good clothes do not go out of season. So you do what you love, make people happy and earn as well.
  • Diverse Work Locations: as a fashion designer, you can work from anywhere you can lay your hands on tools. You don’t necessarily have to be in your workshop all the time. One can also travel and work at the same time.

Job Opportunities for a Fashion Designer

  • Fashion Designer: is one of the top jobs which are made available to fashion designers. They are involved in the manufacturing and development of clothes and clothing accessories. A fashion designer may get a job as a fashion specialist, a fashion consultant and so much more in the fashion industry.
  • Pattern Maker: these category of fashion designers create various patterns used for sewing through the use of computer softwares such as CAD and 3D images. Although, some pattern makers still make use of their hands to create these designs manually. Pattern makers are very important in the fashion industry and of you can learn this, you can create a niche for yourself.
  • Fashion Editor: Fashion editors supervises the creation, development and presentation of various fashion content for fashion related publications. They also manage companies photo shoots, manage their fashion teams, evolving with the industry trends, curating photography and deciding what should be published and what should be taken out before the publication. They must posses good writing skills and have good interpersonal communication skills in order to manage their teams effectively.
  • Fashion Assistant Designer: these fashion assistants  help the fashion designers with their work starting from the development of ideas to the production of the clothes. Assistant designers act in place of the fashion designer when he or she is not available to coordinate a particular clothing event.
  • Fashion Director: Fashion directors are responsible for having a knowledge of the various market trends and they use this knowledge to develop marketing strategies. Fashion directors must have strong communication skills, and be experts in design and color.
  • Textile designer: this person is in charge of designing fabric weaves and various prints for clothes and other clothing accessories. Most textile designers are formally trained as apprentices before they are able to set up their businesses.

Fashion designing is a very lucrative job which can be acquired either through formal education or just by learning the skill from a professional. To become a fashion designer, you will have to learn basic drawing, sewing, and design skills, as they are very much required in the fashion industry.

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