Breaking into the fashion industry....HELP!!!!

Discussion in 'Careers, Education & the Business of Fashion' started by dimples59uk, Jan 19, 2009.

  1. dimples59uk

    dimples59uk New Member

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    Why is it so hard to find a job in the fashion industry if you do not have enough work experience.

    I have a HND in fashion design and graduated nearly ten years ago now. All I want is to work within the fashion industry but have never been able to find a job. They say I do not have enough experience in the field, but how can I gain this valuable experience if nobody wants to give me a chance.
    I was initially interested in design only but have since been looking for buying, production assistant, stylist and many other job related to fashion - even a secretary or admin assistant in the industry - but no luck.

    I have a real passion for fashion and do not want to ever give up on it, but all I need is a chance to prove myself. I will gladly start right from the bottom just as long as I am in the industry and can work my way up.
    I would also love to work with catwalk shows, backstage or runway coaching but have never been able to find a job vacancy in this field in the UK. I only see these positions advertised in USA...... I would love to relocate to the USA if anyone would take me...:blush:
    Does anyone have any suggestions, or ideas on what I can do. Also is there a demand for fashion journalism because I was thinking of doing a course on freelance journalism.
    I feel like I went to university for no reason, I need to break into the industry somehow PLEASE HELP....!!
     
  2. kala_dev

    kala_dev New Member

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    CONNECTION - YOU NEED CONNECTIONS !

    thats one of the most important "skill" needed in the industry !

    still what do you REALLY want to do ? what is that one job that u want in the industry.... ?
    break it down to what is important to you and where u can use the skills you have....
     
  3. BerlinBabe

    BerlinBabe New Member

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    Why not take some internships? Not sure how things work in the UK, but in Germany if you want a job that's hard to get, you take an internship (often unpaid) for 3 months to make connections and get experience. The better your internships, the better your job chances are. It works this way in most of Europe actually.
     
  4. miss_nyc

    miss_nyc New Member

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    I agree with the last two. It is all about connections and interning for free.

    I know people who interned for 2 years for free before they got into the fashion industry.

    The best way would also to contact the fashion companies themselves rather than recruitment agencies.

    I got an interview the Gucci group by applying directly. It took them 6 months to reply, but at least they did.

    Companies do not want to pay agency fees so this is the best way.
     
  5. BetteT

    BetteT Mod Squad Team Leader

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    Welcome to the Fashion Spot, dimples59uk!

    Yes ... unpaid internships = experience and you start making connections, so that is usually a very important step. Usually this is done while you are still in fashion school ... but do your homework ... and you may find a place to start, even if you do not have the school behind you. Sometimes an internship will turn into a real job, if they like you well enough and you have demonstrated your value.

    Assisting and/or interning for freelance stylists, volunteering at fashion weeks ... do anything that gets you into the environment will get you started on making connections.

    I also agree with miss nyc .... contact the companies directly for jobs and/or internships .... it's usually a better bet.

    If you want to be a journalist ... then start writing ... start a blog, volunteer articles to online publications ... get published, even if it's on line. tFS even takes submissions ... see the pinnned thread near the top of this forum.

    There are threads that you need to read on the various topics you mentioned, and threads on lots of other jobs in the industry. Here's a sampling of what's here.

    All About Internships and Work Experience Placements
    I need Contact Info for Publicists / Designers / Showrooms / Magazines / Stores / etc
    All About Becoming a Fashion / Wardrobe Stylist
    How to Get Work at a Fashion Magazine & Get to the Top
    What education you need to do to get into magazines??
    Careers / Jobs / Positions in Magazine Publishing
    Volunteering for Fashion Week Shows
    Ten Things You Didn't Know About Fashion Week
    Becoming a Buyer?


    Learn to do an advanced search to find threads on any subject by thread titles, as I just did here. To learn how to do that, there is a thread pinned near the top of the Member Support forum.
    Searching for Something? ... How to Narrow Down Search Results at tFS
     
    #5 BetteT, Jan 20, 2009
    Last edited by moderator Natasa: Jan 20, 2009
  6. BetteT

    BetteT Mod Squad Team Leader

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    Oh ... one more idea for you ... visual merchandising! That is where you work on the window dispalys in stores. Although it won't make connections on the inside of the fashion industry (with designers and such) but it can become a creative outlet for you as you advance. We have a thread on that, too.
     
  7. dimples59uk

    dimples59uk New Member

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    Hi all, Thankyou for your replies. I would like to concentrate on designing, this has always been my passion. I have tried to get work placements unpaid and still no luck - i wonder what they are looking for because I am never successful. I will definately contact the companies directly rather than going through the agencies, maybe this will help. You all gave me great ideas, and to BETTE I will look at the threads you sent me. THANKS. Also I was a visual merchandiser for nearly two years but had to give it up because I hurt my back, so I then went on to work in retail. Now I work at a non fashion company which I hate with a passion. I will keep looking, maybe I will find even an entry level job - which is just as hard to get. Thanks ALL....X
     
  8. Bespoke Style

    Bespoke Style New Member

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    Ohhh bette T spot on with the visual merchandising... I landed everybody's dream VM job at 19 - worked 3 days a week freelancing- earned more money than all my friends slaving their minds away at their 9-5 jobs.... I was out there meeting people, managers, sales assistants and the more impressed they got- the more "larger" companies I had after me- at 19, I could ask for 60k :)

    VM is honestly the easiest way to network and if you have THAT eye in style and fashion- the industry is your oyster.

    Nothing is impossible, I promise you.

    Good luck x
     
  9. aldn

    aldn New Member

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    Whoa! In Los Angeles it seems a postion even for visuals is impossible to land. Maybe because I'm still in school...
     
  10. Bespoke Style

    Bespoke Style New Member

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    Start networking with boutique owners or store managers of small labels- ask them if you can work with them or on your own on a weekly basis with rotating new stock in the windows on mannequins and even if you can help merchandise new stock as it arrives, its all trial and error and once you begin to understand what stock sells where best; I'm sure they will hire you, if not; being surrounded by people in the industry will definitely lead you somewhere you want to be!

    P.S ALWAYS TAKE PICTURES OF YOUR WORK FOR YOUR PORTFOLIO NO MATTER HOW SMALL THE JOB- BEFORE & AFTER SHOTS!
    :D
     
  11. aldn

    aldn New Member

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    ^^^Thanks
     
  12. vavavinny

    vavavinny Active Member

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    First of all I would like to thank you for being available to all of the users for advice. I think that is amazing and great of you.

    You mention that there is an option for users to submit writings to TFS? I cannot find where to do that on the site. I'm sorry lol. How would I got about submitting my writings?
     
  13. diorrnottwarr

    diorrnottwarr New Member

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    http://www.thefashionspot.com/submissions :flower:
     
  14. vavavinny

    vavavinny Active Member

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    Thank you so much :)!
     
  15. BetteT

    BetteT Mod Squad Team Leader

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    You are welcome ... glad I can help. :flower:


    I beleive there are threads about submitting to tFS in our Member Support forum and also in the Announcements forum. Keep an eye out in these forums ... it's where members learn more about tFS.
     
  16. Emilie

    Emilie Member

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    This is so very true! Bespoke Style makes a great point here.

    It is so important that you document everything, even if it seems unimportant at the time. I would also suggest keeping a journal or contact list where you can write down the name and info of people in the industry who you meet. The more you network, the more difficult it can be to keep track of who's who and what they do!

    One last thing: sometimes you can make stronger, longer lasting connections with people in the industry over a cocktail during happy hour than you can during daytime business hours. You never know who you might meet. Treat every opportunity, even (and especially!) during social outings as an opportunity to present your best self.

    Best of luck! :flower:
     
  17. businesschick

    businesschick New Member

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    Breaking into the Industry.. how?!

    Hey,

    I graduated in 2008 and have been working at a consulting firm since. I have recently been trying to get a merchandising or planning position within the fashion industry but all I hear is "you don't have enough fashion experience, sorry!"

    So what do I need to do? I majored in finance/business admin, went to a great school and got amazing grades and I have such a passion for the industry. Any advice on what these recruiters are looking for?

    Also - I am interested in applying for the Macy*s Development Program? Would they be interested in someone with, when the programs begins in the summer of 2010, has over 2 years of "real world experience"? Are there any other programs like this in NYC?

    thanks :D
     
  18. Filipe

    Filipe New Member

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    Maybe you need contacts in the fashion industry to get in ... ?
     
  19. papa_levante

    papa_levante oh! darling

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    Don't you hate that? It's like, "I'm coming to you for experience!"

    To be exposed to fashion is exposing yourself to the people out there. I think instead of putting formal labels on jobs you want or people out ought to meet, just put yourself out there. There's a lot of people in NYC. Take a chance!
     
  20. BetteT

    BetteT Mod Squad Team Leader

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    Welcome to the Fashion Spot, businesschick!

    Merged with the existing thread. Please do a search by thread titles, before starting a new thread.
     

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