Become a Fashion Designer

how to become a fashion designer

Fashion is an art form in its own right. Every jacket, dress and shirt at a designer outlet has been carefully constructed to suit a particular style. Every stitch serves a purpose, and every button was sewn with care. Not everyone understands what the next trend will be or why styles change so greatly with time. It's up to the fashion designer to analyze these trends, innovate and create something that will become the next popular item in the store window or on the catwalk.

Fashion designers aren't just seamstresses designing apparel and sorting through fabrics. They're master trendsetters that use their talent to predict what the next big wardrobe item will be, and with online training in fashion design, you may find what it takes to turn this pursuit into a career. Many students prefer online courses because they are often more convenient and require less commuting.

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Are Online Fashion Designer Programs for You?

Here are some things to consider when choosing an online fashion designer program:

  • The majority of fashion designers have a bachelor's degree in a relevant field such as fashion design or fashion merchandising, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics[i].
  • While an education and thorough understanding of the fashion process may be critical for a job in the field, employers also look for individuals that can display creativity and originality.
  • Fashion designers must be comfortable using fabrics and textiles in a real world setting, but there are also computer-aided design programs that a professional may have to use on a regular basis. Attaining an expert understanding of this software may also be important.
  • While searching for a position, many employers will request to see a portfolio. Building a sleek portfolio that showcases your creativity and work is often critical to pursuing a career in fashion design.
  • The National Association of Schools of Art and Design accredits institutions with programs in art and design. It may benefit you to search for online institutions that have been accredited as well.

Fashion Designer Career Paths and Potential Salaries

A foundation in fashion design may prepare you to pursue other careers as well. After receiving an education in analyzing trends and by carefully training your eye for style and design, it may be reasonable to search for employment in other related fields that value the same skills. Study which options may be available using statistics compiled by the BLS.

Fashion Designers[i]

Showcasing designs, anticipating consumer interests and maintaining an expert knowledge in all things fabric, color, accessory and style-related - that's what a fashion designer does. They have a mastery in everything apparel, and they leverage merchandising and marketing skills to bring their designs into production and retail.


  • Check the BLS for median annual salary
  • Job growth through 2022: -3 percent (decline)
  • Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree