Delving Into the Fashion Major
Students who pursue fashion degrees must learn the ins and outs of the fashion world and be prepared to research and know fashion and clothing trends. Graduates should be able to design and implement clothing as well as produce other mediums for showcasing clothing and designs. In order to be able to do so, students must take courses that enable them to be creative and design apparel, accessories, and other garments.
Some of the courses students must complete include fashion and textiles, merchandising, fashion journalism, store design, history of fashion, cosmetics, and sustainable design, such as in the degree plan for students of the Academy of Art University.After students complete these and other courses, they will have gained a well-rounded fashion education that will allow them to excel in the fashion and merchandising industries.
In addition to the courses students will study, they will also likely be required to submit a number of projects to ensure that they are learning the concepts and skills they need to. Some projects may include designing and creating garments of clothing, apparel, accessories, and jewelry. Students will also likely be required to read books to supplement their studies and creations for their courses and are also likely to be tested over the material as well.
Earning an associate degree in fashion is a great stepping stone for learning the basics of the industry and being prepared for entry level positions in the fashion design and marketing fields. An associate degree in fashion generally takes students about two years to complete and provides them with the basics and background of color, computer-aided design, fashion history, and pattern making needed to enter the field.
Students who earn an associate degree have developed their design potential, learned creativity and the need for it, and have the knowledge and skills needed to design basic garments and other designs.
Students who earn a bachelor’s degree in fashion delve into more topics and further expand their knowledge of fashion, marketing, and design. Bachelor’s degrees in design take students about four years to complete and allow students to expand their creativity and produce more when it comes to design, fashion, and garments.
With a bachelor’s degree in fashion, students will have studied drawing, sketching, fashion and art history, sewing and tailoring, pattern manufacturing, human anatomy, and the ability to balance colors, proportions, textiles, and moods in order to produce creative designs.
Master’s degrees in fashion are offered at a number of universities across the country and generally take students about one and a half to two years to complete. While degree curricula and specific courses will vary between learning institutions, most graduate fashion degree programs aim to prepare students with the knowledge they will need to excel in the fashion industry.
Graduates of these programs will take the courses necessary to understand the theories involved with design philosophies and the technical aspects of sewing and crafting, while intertwining these concepts with with important subjects that relate to the field such as marketing, visual communications, digital imaging, and product development.
Doctorate degrees are generally pursued by individuals who wish to conduct extensive research on theories and knowledge in their respective areas of interest. Many graduates who earn a doctorate degree do so to be able to conduct market research or be an instructor or teacher.
In order for students to earn a doctorate degree, an immense amount of research of theories and the industry must be completed. Students can earn their doctorate degree in fields that relate to fashion such as design and marketing, which are fields that are commonly intertwined with the fashion industry.
Supplementing Your Fashion Major
Fashion majors have the option of majoring in design specifically or a number of options relating to the field. The courses that fashion majors complete focus on drawing and design, pairing colors and shapes, sketching, sewing, tailoring, fitting, and working with a wide variety of different materials and design objects.
In addition to earning a degree with a major in fashion, students also usually have the opportunity to have a minor concentration to supplement their degree. Having a minor concentration allows students to have more knowledge in another area and is a good way to widen job opportunities and excel in another field. Minor concentrations that pair well with fashion degrees include those in business or business administration, marketing, or advertising.
Fashion graduates with a minor in business may qualify for more jobs, as they have the business knowledge to pursue upper level and management positions in the field. Those fashion graduates with marketing minors can work in fashion careers as well as other careers including merchandiser, buyer, or account manager. In addition, fashion students that minor in advertising may pursue careers in fashion as well as advertising for the fashion industry. Those students who earn minors in fields that compliment fashion degrees are likely to qualify for a larger number of jobs and have more flexibility when it comes to pursuing a career in the business and professional world.
Learn More About the Fashion Major
- US News and World Report’s Fashion Institute of Technology
- Beginning Costume Design and Construction
- Fashion Journal
The Fashion Major in the Job Market
Students who complete degree programs in fashion are prepared with the knowledge and training they will need to qualify for a number of different careers relating to the fashion and design industry. Students have knowledge of both the business sides of the industry as well as the creative and design sides of the industry. Graduates of fashion degree programs will be able to read and understand consumer trends, understand consumer market segments, can display creativity, and understand the importance of teamwork and collaboration. Graduates will also understand the business fundamentals of the industry, will be familiar with marketing and merchandising techniques, and will be able to identify, evaluate, and work within the social, economic, and environmental aspects and influences of the global fashion industry.
Because the fashion industry is highly competitive, individuals interested in pursuing careers in the field must have the skills and training needed to show they belong in the field, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. They must also have a strong desire to be a designer and an innovator. Employers in the field commonly look for individuals who can portray their creative side, can work well and collaborate with others, and have the skills needed to design and create exceptional finished products, depending on their area of expertise.
Common career paths that graduates of fashion degree programs follow include (but are not limited to): fashion designer, visual merchandiser, display artist, retail store manager, fashion buyer, stylist, fashion editor, fashion writer, or showroom sales representative. Students also have the opportunity to become an entrepreneur and start their own business in fashion including opening a retail store. With the knowledge and training students in fashion degree programs earn, there are a number of additional job opportunities for graduates to pursue.