Fashion Merchandising 101
By Shay Marie
A career in fashion merchandising provides the flexibility of a wide variety of specialties. Here you will get a solid idea of the several career paths of a fashion merchandiser, the role he or she plays and how crucial that role is in the fashion industry.
First thing’s first; a fashion merchandiser obviously has a good sense of style. She could easily see the next, hottest trends and her favorite activities probably involve arranging outfits, shopping for them and spending hours investigating blogs and magazines of fellow fashion lovers. In most cases, a fashion professional knows what people want and she makes certain to provide it to them in the best way possible.
When working in fashion, you will probably find yourself working in a department store, boutique or fashion house, and the like. Fashion merchandisers are one step ahead and they make sure that the store, boutique or fashion house is too. Not only does a fashion merchandiser have great fashion sense but they must be skilled in the areas of marketing and strategizing to increase product sales.
Must-have Skills in Fashion Merchandising
Presenting the product efficiently to the consumer is an important part of the field and requires the merchandiser to know the precise taste of the target group. Performing tasks like these require someone in fashion merchandising to have excellent verbal and nonverbal communication skills. While working in fashion, you must be able to communicate not merely with suppliers and manufacturers to carry out efficient transactions but also with consumers through visual displays and fashionable store selections. It’s essential to know what the latest trends are in order to find out what products will be sold, the amount they should be purchased and sold for and how much profit the business will bring in. A fashion merchandiser with a large fashion house or large clothing manufacturer will typically specialize in one are such as women’s clothing, shoes, men’s clothing, etc. At times, this career will require a fashion merchandiser to travel to meet with supplier and manufacturers to execute transactions, have meetings and attend shows. This field revolves around long work hours, quick decision making, industry pressure and competition. Solely those with thick skin, strong organizational skills, excellent communication and determination will be successful in this field.
Fashion Merchandising is One of The Top Fashion Jobs
Numerous fashion graduates anticipate to get their dream job as soon as possible; understand that this will probably not be the case. You can definitely find yourself working in retail for some time or still looking for jobs months after graduating. One thing to consider is the probability of internships. This is especially true if you are considering working for big companies and places where they don’t hire externally. For example, if your dream is to work for Vogue, working hard to get one of their internships is a major step to get your foot in the door. Interning for fashion designers and public relation firms are also ways to get experience. Consider, however, that a majority of these internships are not paid. Is this something that you can afford to do? Be wise.
Anything you have chosen to do in this field there are several paths you can take. If one doesn’t work out you can always start to look at your other available choices. Remember, as stated before, it is a competitive field and only those that are determined and hard working get to the top positions.
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