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08-01-2006
  46
front row
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
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how do you get into buying? like what courses would i take in university? do u have to only go to a fashion school to get into fashion or can u go to a normal university and take something like marketing and then try to do fashion?

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08-01-2006
  47
rising star
 
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^^you dont need to go to fashion school to get into buying. it's just nice to have the fashion background. most of the people i know who went into buying for the big names did not study fashion. (but that's why lot of people in the industry/or in the production side think buyers are annoying and ignorant. )

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08-01-2006
  48
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^...is it about connections then?

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08-01-2006
  49
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everything is always about connection BUT...my friends got into w/o that. they just applied to all the stores and got it the old fashion way.

slightly off-topic but i think everyone interested in buying, merchandising, etc should read "why we buy" by paco underhill

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08-01-2006
  50
windowshopping
 
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^^
seeing as I have no contacts, that's what I've been doing as well. How long did it take her to find something?? Was she living in/near the city where she found a job??

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09-01-2006
  51
rising star
 
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all in NY...seems like it is much easier to find something there

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09-01-2006
  52
Meg
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A lot of the positions I've looked at, for entry level positions here in the UK, prefer people to have fashion related undergrad degree's for the buying positions. Merchandising is a different job, they just work in conjunction with the buyer that so often these two are grouped together. Merchandising is a lot more number crunching than a buyer is.

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09-01-2006
  53
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mark up is anywhere between 2.5 and 4

however the general rule is a mark up of 2.7

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09-01-2006
  54
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I guess it varies with different companies. I do know the Assistant Buyers are mostly from a fashion school like FIT. But the Senior Buyers (mostly) are has a 4 yr. degree with lots of number crunching. But then , I go by the people I know in the field.

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09-01-2006
  55
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...so if I am interested in buying, what should I major in. Does Parsons or FIT have a course?

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10-01-2006
  56
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I think if you want to be a fashion buyer - a course in Business/Commerce with a side course in Fashion would be great.

I'm studying science and fashion and plan to do commerce aswell. That way I would have the research and analytical skills from my science degree (plus showing that I can do maths), then the creative flair, industry knowledge and forcasting skills from my fashion course and then general business skills from my commerce degree. Just an idea...

The best way and perhaps the only way for the inexperienced, is to start out by taking those assistant buyer jobs and working your way up and at least making some contacts out of it. Buying is one of those things that if you are good at it, you will be rewarded with better positions in a relatively short time frame. You will have to start somewhere - and as mentioned a lot of buying is actually sitting in an office looking at numbers and analysing them. Also a lot of research is involved too. The part most people desire is the travel and the collaboration with the suppliers. Remember that alot of this collaboration involves working with warehouses in Asia, not designers in Milan and that you might be buying 1400 etc of a plain t-shirt and not copulous amounts of frivolous dresses.

HTH

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10-01-2006
  57
etre soi-meme
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k-a-t-e

You will have to start somewhere - and as mentioned a lot of buying is actually sitting in an office looking at numbers and analysing them. Also a lot of research is involved too. The part most people desire is the travel and the collaboration with the suppliers. Remember that alot of this collaboration involves working with warehouses in Asia, not designers in Milan and that you might be buying 1400 etc of a plain t-shirt and not copulous amounts of frivolous dresses.
thats so true, most businesses just press buyers for the lowest wholesale prices possible, so its hard to keep the company from getting all trashy and cheap.. lots of research and lots of trash to see, always fighting for the lowest price possible..
it's a 'power' job but not always as enjoyable as some may think (unless one is working for a luxe boutique/department store).

someting else, buyers need to keep in mind 'general public's' taste and trends regardless how ewwy they may be, personal style and prefferences are not the best way to see things when one is buying for a big label..

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13-01-2006
  58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lena
thats so true, most businesses just press buyers for the lowest wholesale prices possible, so its hard to keep the company from getting all trashy and cheap.. lots of research and lots of trash to see, always fighting for the lowest price possible..
it's a 'power' job but not always as enjoyable as some may think (unless one is working for a luxe boutique/department store).

someting else, buyers need to keep in mind 'general public's' taste and trends regardless how ewwy they may be, personal style and prefferences are not the best way to see things when one is buying for a big label..
Thats a great point. I took this into consideration when I saw these hideous skirts on Neimans website, they were charging $1500 for.

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16-01-2006
  59
Meg
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Well a buyer should always know their client non? The customer is a federated department store is going to on average being different than that of someone who shops at Wal-Mart and that who shops at upscale boutiques. I don't like the idea of completely discounting 'cheap' stores (can't think of the industry term for it at the moment) some of these stores offer the best training courses in buying and merch. And a lot of people who are senior buyers at more 'desirable' stores have started this way as well.

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17-01-2006
  60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DP_woman
Wow, the L&T program is only 10 weeks!!! Thats even shorter than Neimans 12-week program. Hmm, I think I'll apply for that one as well. Im going back to school to get more training before I apply to Neimans program.


Here is what it says about the Lord & Taylor executive trainee program:

B.S./B.A. from an accredited four-year college or university.All majors considered. Strong interest and ability in financial analysis required.Cumulative G.P.A. of 3.0 on a 4.0 system. The demands and competitiveness of the business dictates that we hire smart people.Leadership and work experience. What you do and how you do it are important in our evaluation. Previous retail experience is not required.Legally authorized to work in the United States.

LordandTaylor.com
Federated is closing Lord & Taylor...so you can take that off the options.

I am planning on doing the Saks Executive Excellence Program in July.

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