Fashion Careers

Attending University Open Days

If you’re looking to go to university, it’s really important that you attend open days for the universities that you are considering applying to. It helps you make an informed decision about where to apply as you get to see the campus, meet the tutors and talk to current students.

I’ve put together a few tips on how to get the most out of university open days, before, during and after.

BEFORE – Get prepared

  • Decide and research into what course you’re interested in. There is usually a lot of information about courses on university websites.
  • Look at where the university is in relation to the nearest station and its location with the town/city. This is where Google Maps comes in handy!
  • Plan your route. Decide what is the best transport to take to get to the university, you may decide to drive, get a taxi, bus/coach or train. Some universities may even require a plane ride! Just make sure you plan in advance so that you have time to book any transport tickets and get the best price for them.
  • Have a rough plan for the day. Every university runs their open days slightly different. Some universities may offer you a timetable of events happening on the open day beforehand including talks and tours. This gives you time to decide which ones you’re interested in and allows you to make a plan. You may even need to book a place on a talk or tour, so make sure you check this with the university beforehand.
  • Compose a list of questions about the university/course that you want answers to. Below are some examples of questions you might want to ask:
    • What are the entry requirements?
    • Is there still an opportunity to get onto the course if I don’t meet all the entry requirements?
    • What do the tutors look for in an application and personal statement?
    • Will I need a portfolio to apply for the course? What should be included in a portfolio?
    • What do the tutors look for in a portfolio?
    • Does the course do interviews?
    • Is there any time for work placements or internships on the course?
    • What have previous graduates gone on to do?
  • Also, think about questions you may want to ask current students to get a different perspective. Below are some examples of questions you might want to ask:
    • What are the best and worst things about the course/university?
    • What has their experience on the course been like?
    • What is it like living in the town/city?

Open Days

ON THE DAY – Ask lots of questions!

  • Make sure you arrive on time! You don’t want to miss any important talks/tours.
  • Attend course talks/lectures for courses that you are interested in, make sure you take notes at all the talks/lectures to reflect on when you get home.
  • Attend any finance talks that some universities offer if you are confused about student finance.
  • Go on tours of the university campus and accommodation.
  • Go on tours of the town/city if they are offered.
  • Allow yourself time to explore the area yourself to see if you can picture yourself living there.

Open Days

AFTER – Reflect

  • Look through your notes and any leaflets that were given to you to ensure that all your questions were answered, and you understand everything that you were told on the day. If you’re unsure about anything, phone or email the university to clarify any details.
  • Discuss the open day with a parent, family member, teacher or friend. This allows you to reflect on the open day and ultimately make a decision on whether you want to apply.

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Should I go to University?

During the period of time when you’re studying for your GCSE’s and A-Levels, there’s a lot of pressure from parents, teachers and even friends that you should go to university. University is a great place to expand your mind, learn new things and meet new people. But, going to university is not for everybody. There are other options available to you when you leave school such as apprenticeships, starting your own business or jumping straight in and getting a job!

In the end, no one can tell you whether you should go to University or not, it’s a decision that you have to make for yourself. But, I’ve put together a few questions that may help you make your final decision.

#1 – What is my end goal?

Before you decide to go (or not go) to university, you should have a rough idea in your head about what your end goal is. This includes knowing what subjects you really enjoy, what industry you could see yourself working in or even what job you could see yourself having.

Certain career paths require you to have a degree, whereas other do not. It’s important that you research into the career or job that you’re working towards before you make the decision of whether or not to go to university. Good places to research this information include career books, job descriptions and talking to professionals or teachers that have experience in the particular industry you are interested in.

However, if you’re not sure about what your end goal is, that’s okay too. Very few people know exactly what they want to do when they’re in their teens, or even in their twenties! The most important thing is that you ask yourself what you enjoy doing and what you’re talented in and then go from there. If you are really struggling with this, talk to a teacher, family member or career advisor to get their help.

should i go to university

Photo by @rekitanicole

#2 – Is there a subject that I really love and want to explore?

Unlike school or college, when you go to university you have to decide on one (or sometimes two) subjects that you want to study for 3+ years. So, it’s really important that, if you do decide to go to university, you choose a subject that you really enjoy that will hold your interest for the duration of the course. Remember, university study is a lot more independent, so you will need to be able to motivate yourself to study, complete assignments and do your coursework, which is a lot easier when you love the subject you’re studying.

Sometimes, if you have a career goal in mind, you may have to study topics that you don’t absolutely love. But if you know that studying that particular subject will get you to your dream job or career path, that can be enough to keep you motivated as well.

#3 – What are the alternatives?

If you aren’t sure whether you should go to university or not, you should look into what the alternatives are. At school, the idea of going to university is really pushed upon us, but there are other ways to reach your overall goals. Some of the alternatives available include apprenticeships, taking a gap year, starting your own business or getting a job. Research into all the alternatives available and think about which is the most suitable for you and your goals.

#4 – Do I need a degree?

Again, it’s important to consider your career goals. Not all careers require you to have a degree, some may prefer apprenticeships and other may offer entry level jobs for applicants straight out of school. It’s all about research!

should I go to university

#5 – Can I afford to go to university?

University has become a lot more expensive in recent years which sucks 👎, so it’s important that you consider the financial side of going to university. Research into how much your preferred universities are charging and how the student loan system works. Have a look at

Research into how much your preferred universities are charging and how the student loan system works. Have a look at this and this for more information about student finance (UK).

As well as looking into the costs of the course and accommodation, think about the other costs of living that you incur as a student like food, utility bills, course materials etc. The maintenance loan that is offered to you by student finance often doesn’t cover everything that you need to pay for as a student, so you’ll need to have some savings, get a job and/or have parents that are willing to help you out financially.

However, if you really do want to go to university, don’t let money get in the way. There are services and support available if you look for it, so make sure you do your research. Contact your local council or your chosen universities to see if they can offer any financial help. You may also be able to make savings by living at home whilst studying if that’s suitable for you, or you could take a gap year and get a job to save up some money that you can put towards your university fund.

I hope these questions have helped you think about whether going to university is the right option for you. Remember that this is a decision that you have to make for you, and there are no right or wrong answers. Just think about what you will be happiest doing, and what will bring you closer to your personal goals.

If you like this you like…

Preparing for your First Year at Uni

Fashion Design School Toolkit

Art Supply Shops in London

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Choosing the right University

Deciding to go to University is a huge decision, so you want to make sure that you’re choosing the right University and degree course for you. University is not only a big expense, but it’s also a big investment of your time, so it’s important to do your research before sending off your applications.

I’ve put together some of my key tips and advice for choosing the right university and degree course for you.

#1 – Ask yourself…

Firstly, make sure that you really want to go to university, and that you want to go for the right reasons. Yes, a university experience can be really fun, and it’s a great place to meet new people, but the main purpose of going to university is to learn and get a degree in a subject that you are really interested in. If you don’t really like studying, reading or going to classes, going to university may not be the best option for you.

Also, don’t feel pressured to go to university just because everyone else your age is going, or you feel pressured by your teachers or parents. There are many other alternatives to university, such as apprenticeships, getting a full-time job or even starting your business! Just make sure you really think about whether going to university is the best option for you.

If you are sure you want to go to university but are not sure what degree course to choose, ask yourself:

  1. What are my main interests? What subject(s) do I enjoy the most? Why do I like these subjects?
  2. How do I like to learn? Am I better at exams or coursework?
  3. Do I want to go to a big university or a smaller university?
  4. Do I want to move away from home, or live at home and commute to university?
  5. How far away am I willing to go to for university? What part of the country do I want to study?
  6. Do I want to study abroad?
  7. Do I want to do a sandwich course, with an internship during my studies?

Knowing your answers to these questions will help you with your research later on.

#2 – Research, research, research

Once you have a rough idea what subject you want to study, and what area of the country you want to study in, research into all the universities that offer courses that relate to your chosen subject. Use websites such as UCAS, Which? University, the Guardian University Guide, and WhatUni to find out about the different courses and universities available to you. Use these resources to find out important information about each university such as course descriptions, course content, student satisfaction ratings and university rankings.

#3 – Visit open days

Once you have done all your research and have narrowed down your list of possible universities, look into when their open days are. You should try to visit as many of your shortlisted universities as you can so you can make an informed decision. When you go to open days, don’t just visit the university campus, make sure you have a look at the surrounding area and if possible get a tour of the halls of residence if you are thinking of living away from home. If possible, try to talk with current students about their experiences at the university, talk to tutors about the course and what kind of projects they set on their course, and ask to see student’s work to get a good idea about the kind of work created at the university.

#4 – Pre-uni schemes

Research into whether the universities that you have shortlisted have any pre-uni schemes such as summer schools, taster days or lectures. These can give you a better idea of what it’s actually like to be a student at the university.

Hopefully, this has given you a few things to think about when choosing which university you want to study at.

List of Fashion Design Degrees in the UK

Note: This is not a full list of UK Fashion Design courses, for full listings see UCAS. The following information is correct as of July 2017.

LONDON

Instituto Marangoni
www.istitutomarangoni.com/en/
BA (Hon) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Fashion Design & Womenswear | BA (Hons) Fashion Design & Menswear | BA (Hons) Fashion Design & Accessories | BA (Hons) Fashion Design & Marketing

Kingston University
www.kingston.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion

London Metropolitan University
www.londonmet.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion and Textiles Extended Degree | BA (Hons) Fashion

Middlesex University
www.mdx.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles

Ravensbourne
www.ravensbourne.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion | BA (Hons) Fashion Accessory Design

University of West London
www.uwl.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion & Textiles

University of Westminster
www.westminster.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

University of East London
www.uel.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles

University of the Arts London
www.arts.ac.uk
Central Saint Martins
BA (Hons) Fashion | BA (Hons) Fashion: Fashion Design Womenswear | BA (Hons) Fashion: Fashion Design with Marketing | BA (Hons) Fashion: Fashion Design Menswear | BA (Hons) Fashion: Fashion Print | BA (Hons) Fashion: Fashion Design with Knit | BA (Hons) Textile Design

London College of Fashion
BA (Hons) Fashion Design & Development | BA (Hons) Fashion Contour | BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology: Womenswear | BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology: Menswear | BA (Hons) Fashion Sportswear | BA (Hons) Fashion Pattern Cutting | BA (Hons) Bespoke Tailoring | BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles: Print

UK

Arts University Bournemouth
aub.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion

University of Brighton
www.brighton.ac.uk/index.aspx
BA (Hons) Fashion with Business Studies

Bucks New University
bucks.ac.uk/home
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

University for the Creative Arts
www.uca.ac.uk
UCA Epsom
BA (Hons) Fashion | BA (Hons) Sports Fashion & Branding

UCA Rochester
BA (Hons) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Fashion Atelier | BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles Print

UCA Farnham
BA (Hons) Textiles for Fashion & Interiors

University of Hertfordshire
www.herts.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

Bath Spa University
www.bathspa.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

Birmingham City University
bcu.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Garment Technology

University of the West of England
www.uwe.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles

University of Central Lancashire
www.uclan.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

De Montford University
dmu.ac.uk/home.aspx
BA (Hons) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles and Accessories

University of Derby
www.derby.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion | BA (Hons) Fashion and Fashion Marketing

Edinburgh College of Art
www.eca.ed.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion

Falmouth University
www.falmouth.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design  

Glasgow School of Art
www.gsa.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

University of Huddersfield
www.hud.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design with Marketing & Production | BA (Hons) Fashion Design with Textiles

University of Leeds
www.leeds.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Fashion Technology

Leeds College of Art
www.leeds-art.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion | BA (Hons) Fashion Design

Liverpool John Moores University
www.ljmu.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion

Manchester Metropolitan University
www2.mmu.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion | BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology with a Foundation Year | BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology – Menswear | BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology – Womenswear | BA (Hons) Fashion Design Technology – Sportswear

Nottingham Trent University
www.ntu.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design | BA (Hons) Fashion Knitwear Design and Knitted Textiles

Northumbria University
www.northumbria.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion | BA (Hons) Fashion Design & Marketing

University of Salford
www.salford.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

Sheffield Hallam University
www.shu.ac.uk
BA (Hons) Fashion Design

University of Southampton – Winchester School of Art
www.southampton.ac.uk/wsa
BA (Hons) Fashion & Textiles Design

How to Promote Yourself

As a creative student, it is important to find ways of standing out in a very competitive job market. One way you can achieve this is by promoting yourself and your work throughout your studies. Doing this can prove useful when you’re looking for a work placement, internship, or even a job when you graduate, as you’ll have a really strong and professional online presence. I’ve put together a few ideas of ways you can promote yourself throughout your studies.

#1 – Website or Blog

This is a great way to creatively share your work. You can design or find a website template that reflects your style, and share your work and personal experiences on your own website. It can look even more professional if you are able to buy your own website domain. This is an option that may be more suitable at the end of your second year or in your third year as it is an investment that may be more useful to you when you are about to graduate and are looking for your first job.

Below are some websites that are great for creating a blog or website:

How to promote yourself

#2 – Artsthread

Artsthread is a website that allows you to sign up and upload your portfolio(s) of work. It’s a great place to upload your work as it’s a global network of creative students, graduates, institutions and brands. They have a large database of creative brands looking for new graduates, interns, and freelancers, so there are lots of opportunities to be discovered. Artsthread also have information on current design grants, competitions, internships, and exhibitions. It’s also a great place to look at other students work to be inspired, and see what your peers are up to.

#3 – LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a business and employment focused social networking site. I advise creating an account, using a professional image of yourself, with all the information that you would find on your CV. This includes your education history, job history, achievements, volunteering experience, and skills. You can then use your profile to network with professionals in the creative industry, and stay connected with your peers and people you’ve worked with.

How to promote yourself

#4 – Instagram

You can use any form of social media to promote yourself and your work in a professional manner, but as a creative with lots of visual work to share, I find that Instagram is the best social media option. It allows you to easily post images of your university work, and anything else that you work on outside of your university course. I recommend keeping your professional and personal social media accounts separate to ensure you appear professional to any future employers or clients. Instagram is another way you can network with your peers and professionals in the creative industries. Try following brands that you would like to work for in the future, as they sometimes post internship and job opportunities on their social media accounts.

 

Other blog posts you might find useful: 

 

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Career Advice


One of the things I struggled with when I was going through ‘the process’ from school to college and then to uni was getting ‘real’ advice. Yes, I got all the leaflets and attended all the school/college careers fairs, which were really useful, but I wished I got to hear more advice & information from people that had recently gone through the experience, specifically in fashion.

Now I have my own experience and want to share it with you!

Look out for my student and career-themed blog posts, and sign up to my newsletter to get updates and free resources to help you with your studies and career progression.

Sign up to get Tizz Tazz updates, including career advice, blog updates and Tizz Tazz news:

Finding a Summer Work Placement

With summer break just around the corner (or already started for some!), I’m sure the majority of students nationwide are dreaming of two to three months of no deadlines, no alarm clocks, and no coursework (WOOHOO!). However, as well as catching up on sleep, some students may also be looking for a great experience to add to their CV and learn some new skills.

A summer work placements is a great opportunity to network with people in your industry, learn new skills and get some experience on your CV. It can sometimes be difficult finding the right work placement for you, so I’ve put together some tips that I’ve learned over the years that might help.

#1  – Create an amazing CV

You need a CV to send to possible employers to let them know a bit about you. For a creative placement in a creative industry, try to find a creative way to display your contact information, education, work experience and skills on an A4 page. Make sure it is clear, but also eye-catching and relevant to the types of positions you want to apply for.

Find more of my CV writing tips here.

#2 – Write a cover letter

Sometimes you may need to send a cover letter along with your CV. A cover letter is a short letter that details why you are applying for the position, what relevant experience you have and states your availability. Don’t make it too general, try to tailor everything you say to the company and position you are applying for.

#3 – Research

Once you have your CV and cover letter sorted, start researching for possible placement opportunities. Think about what area of Fashion you may be interested in learning more about. If you’re already on a degree course, think about what role would complement your degree. Brainstorm some ideas of jobs you’d like to learn more about and companies that you may like to work for. If you need some help thinking of possible job roles in the fashion industry, this book is great to learn more about fashion jobs.

After you’ve had a think about what kind of roles and companies you may be interested in, have a look at these websites to find current opportunities that may suit you.

If there is a very specific brand that you are looking to intern for, another good option is to have a look at their social media profiles to see if there are any vacancies. If that fails, another idea is to email or phone them directly enquiring about an opportunity.

#4 – Apply!

Once you’ve found roles that you’re interested in applying for, start sending out your CV and cover letter and wait for responses. It may take a while to get responses from some companies as they may be busy, but hopefully, you’ll get a good few replies which may invite you for a face to face interview or telephone interview.

Remember, when you are applying for any job or internship the interview stage is as much about you working out if you want to work for the company/brand as it is about them working out if they think you’d be a good fit in their organisation, so try not to be too nervous or anxious.

I hope this helped some of you looking for work placement this summer, or at any other times in the year. I’d love to hear if any of you have any tips for your fellow students looking for a work placement, so tweet me @tizz_tazz if you do 🙂

CV Writing Tips for Fashion Students

Whilst you’re studying, it’s a good idea to have a CV made up as a working document. Throughout your course, you can keep a record of your achievements and experiences by updating your CV as you go along. This is really useful for when you’re looking to start applying for work placements and internships during summer and/or during University placement years/terms because your CV is always ready to send out!

Below I’ve listed a few tips that I’ve picked up through my two years at University may be useful in creating your CV, whatever stage of your course you’re in:

#1 – Make it eye-catching

Fashion is a competitive industry. There are hundreds, if not thousands of fashion students looking for opportunities, so try to make your CV as individual and eye-catching as possible. This is your chance to present yourself to the industry, so try to create a CV that reflects your personality as well as your academic achievements and experience.

#2 – Align to specific industry or particular company

Make sure all your information, including your skills and personal statement, are aligned with the industry or company you are targeting. If you are looking for a practical role, like a pattern cutter or machinist, ensure you list skills that demonstrate that you know how to use industrial machinery or create flat patterns or can drape on the stand etc.

#3 – Make sure it’s neat and easy to read

Companies can get sent hundreds of applications and CVs for a role. If your CV isn’t neatly presented and hard to read, it may get tossed aside. Ensure someone can pick up your CV and see the main points easily and clearly. Have a good think about how you are going to layout your CV. Try to keep it on one page if possible, and use bullets points to list your information.

#4 – Ensure you’ve included all the important info

CVs usually include; personal details (name, contact info), a profile/personal statement (just a few lines), education/qualifications, achievements, skills, experience, and references. You can also include any relevant interests if you think it will add to your application or show more of your personality.

Remember, sometimes it may be necessary to tailor your information depending on the industry/company you are applying to.

#5 – Get a second opinion

Once you’ve created a draft copy of your CV, have someone check it over for you. This could be a tutor, career advisor or parent. If you know someone that works in the industry/company that you want to apply to, ask if they wouldn’t mind checking it over too!

For more layout ideas and tips, have a look at this Pinterest board.

I hope these few tips have been useful for you! If you have any more tips you’d like to share, leave a comment below or tweet me @tizz_tazz.

Fashion Jobs: Interview with Seller Development Executive India Usher

My main aim when creating this Fashion Jobs series was to discover and share the variety jobs available in the fashion industry, including the one’s that people generally don’t think about when considering a job in fashion.

This week I am interviewing India Usher, a Seller Development Executive at ASOS Marketplace. This job is a great example of a fun, creative job in the fashion industry that you may not think about doing when looking for jobs in the industry!

2675072PROFILE 
Name: India Usher
Job Title: Seller Development Executive at ASOS Marketplace

Q – Who is your favourite designer, artist or illustrator?
There are lots of brands that I love, a lot of them are on ASOS Marketplace; House of Sunny, Daughter of Jón, Alice Treehouse, Rianna Phillips, Sera Ulger and many, many more! My favourite artist has to be contemporary artist and friend Edward Waite – I’ve just commissioned a piece from him so I can’t wait to see it!

Q – Describe a typical day at work.
There is no typical day as such; my role is to provide support to all Independent and multi-brand boutiques. This includes working on tailor-made development plans to help boutiques improve the look and feel of their boutique in ways such as their social media presence, photography, products and branding to help them increase sales. I have lots of face-to-face meetings too, so I spend a bit of time travelling to see boutiques or they will come to the ASOS head offices, which they always love as it’s such a cool place.

Q – What is your favourite part of your job?
I love working to develop boutiques; watching them grow is amazing and so rewarding. It’s also lovely when I scout a boutique and see them go live on ASOS Marketplace. 

Q – What are the main skills that you think are needed for your job?
Creativity, a good eye for emerging design talent, strong communication skills, business savvy and good organisation skills are all key!

Q- What route did you take to get to where you are today?
I did a BTEC fashion & textile course and then went on to study fashion design at University. After university I did a few internships and then secured 
my first real job in fashion at the British Fashion Council.

Q – Did you always know that you wanted to work in the fashion industry?
Yes, 100% – from the age of 5 I was making bags from old jeans and drawing sketches. 

Q – What advice would you give to students aspiring to work in the fashion industry?
Work hard you will get there, this industry is very competitive but do not lose your determination. Be yourself – it’s extremely important.

A huge thank you to India for sharing her experience and advice with us! Why not have a look on ASOS Marketplace to see some of the brands that India works with here.

Fashion Jobs: Interview with Creative Director Chloe Hope King

This week I am interviewing Creative Director Chloe Hope King. Another very inspirational woman, and professional in the fashion industry, Chloe has started her own business and on asking her what her job title was her answer was ‘When starting your own company you actually end up wearing a lot of hats (so to speak) during the day to day running of the business! Each week I’m designer, maker, accountant, photographer, web designer.. the list goes on! But officially.. It’s Creative Director‘ which just goes to show the sheer hard work that goes into running your own business!

headshot croppedPROFILE
Name: Chloe Hope King
Job Title: Creative Director (Officially!)

 

Q – Who is your favourite artist or designer?
It’s so difficult to pick a favourite! I’m constantly meeting such talented and inspiring people. A few current favourites I’d highly recommend checking out the work of; Designer – Jewellery designer Rowenna Harrison has such a unique style and her craftsmanship is on point, I was lucky enough to have her exhibit her jewellery label Rosita Bonita at the Christmas fair of an event I organise, Intrigue Emporium, a melting pot of outrageously creative British manufacturing designers and makers; Artist – Gustav Klimt, I still cannot get enough of gold leaf and Illustrator – Nina Dogmetchi of Imagination Illustrated. We met a few weeks ago at Renegade Craft Fair and her work and gorgeous personality blew me away!
Esoteric London Jewellery Tribal Nebulae Collection - blue laser cut geometric resin jewellery

Q – Describe a typical day at work.
There really is no ‘typical day’. Day to day, season to season things are so different! Around the beginning of the year I get a little more time to design new collections, sample new pieces, get my admin in order, whereas in the run up to Christmas I’m doing markets/ pop-up shops every weekend and it’s pretty much all making, packaging, selling and the occasional pause for breath. For an example, here’s my plan for tomorrow –

  • I like to miss rush hour on the trains so I’ll arrive to the studio around 10ish if I don’t have any appointments and settle myself down with a herbal tea (the first of around 10! I’m not a coffee drinker) and reply to my emails. Then get the days to do list in order. I usually will have done this roughly the night before but things usually need tweaking.
  • Next I’ll get on and package orders and ship them out.
  • I’ll be interviewing a few students who have applied to do a work placement internship with me as part of their studies in the early afternoon.
  • Then I’ll be carrying on finishing off some final samples of new collection pieces, ready to be photographed early next week.
  • In between all this I’ll be juggling replying to new emails, I usually try to only check at set times of the day, but with so many events coming up I need to keep an eye out just in case of any last minute emergencies! As well as updating social media and organising the folks who are working on promoting the event with me.

I aim to leave around 6 usually, but this certainly doesn’t happen every day. I have the Intrigue Emporium event I organise this weekend, Pulse tradeshow the weekend after and Bust Craftacular Spring Fair the weekend after that so I’m pretty busy getting the new collections, displays and admin sorted for that so I’ll probably leave around 8 or 9pm.

Q – What is your favourite part of your job?
Designing and making. As I’m sure many creative business owners will agree – I do wish I got to spend a lot more time doing it though!

IMG_4437 copy

Q – What are the main skills that you think are needed for your job?
Perseverance, sometimes it will feel like an insurmountable pile of work is ahead of me and late nights, especially in the early stages of a business are not uncommon.
A good sense of humour – things go right, things go wrong, I used to get terribly caught up in these things, now I just roll with it!
Multi-tasking, this one speaks for itself really, when starting up my business and it was just one then two people it was a case of getting stuck in with whatever needed to be done, whenever it needed to be done.

Q – What route did you take to get to where you are today?
I started A levels in Maths, Science (possibly Biology.. it was about 12 years ago so memory may not serve correctly!), Drama and Textiles, I then decided that I wanted to go the creative route so swapped out Maths and Science by A2 year for a BTEC in Fashion. Then I got my first job as a junior designer, designing prints and jersey wear for various high street retailers (ASOS, New Look, Freemans amongst others). The job advertised was for a graduate, I didn’t have a degree yet, but I wanted the job, and fortunately they liked me enough to let me have it! Then I went on to study at the London College of Fashion.

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Q – Did you always know that you wanted to work in the fashion industry?
In a way yes.. I also ‘knew’ I wanted to be a police officer, Doctor, lawyer, chef, pilot, shop keeper, Peter Pan…

Q – What advice would you give to students hoping to start their own businesses in the fashion industry?
Again, be prepared. It’s going to cost you a lot in the first year – financially, emotionally, lack of sleep. If it’s really what you want to do though, it’s 100% worth every second of it! There will be no doubt times when you wonder if you should just give up, but overcoming those challenges is when it really feels like a huge achievement to look back on how far you’ve come.

A huge thank you to Chloe for allowing me to interview her and sharing her experiences with us! If you would like to see more of Chloe and her work, click on the links below:

Website: esoteric-london.com
Twitter: @esotericldn
Instagram: @esotericldn