How to Become a Fashion Designer | The Complete Guide

Do you want to become a Fashion Designer? If yes, this article will be of help to you. This step-by-step career guide has been crafted keeping the needs of fashion designing aspirants in mind. This article focuses on the topic – how to become a fashion designer in India.

Fashion Designer

Fashion design is the art of application of design and aesthetics to clothing and accessories. Fashion designers sketch, design, plan and create clothes, accessories and ornaments. Also check – Fashion design courses & entrance exams.


Fashion designing is not just limited to knitting clothes! Fashion designers carry out research on fashion trends. They give attention to the latest trends and cater to the needs of their audience.


Here are some of the important tasks carried out by fashion designers –

  • Research on latest fashion trends
  • Research on consumer behavior
  • Designing, sketching and planning
  • Tailoring
  • Merchandising


It is not uncommon to see fashion designers hire professionals who carry out many of the tasks mentioned above. Some such professionals who work under a fashion designer are –

  • Technical designer
  • Pattern maker
  • Tailor
  • Textile designer
  • Illustrator
  • Dressmaker


Established fashion designers usually have a team working for him/her. Beginners usually multitask and carry out the tasks all by themselves (not necessary though).


Fashion designers are knowledgeable about clothing material, color, garment combinations, texture, pattern-making, fashion trends, knitting and sewing techniques, tailoring equipment, fashion retailing and merchandising etc. Also check – How to become a photographer in India.


There’s a notion that it only takes creativity to make it big in this field. Yes, creativity is required to thrive in this field. Along with that, it is also necessary to pursue a professional course related to fashion designing!


Here are some of the qualities required to thrive in this field –

  • Creativity
  • Sound technical knowledge (textile designing, garments etc)
  • Good tailoring skills
  • Good drawing skills
  • Eye for detail
  • Keen interest in latest fashion trends
  • Good business acumen (merchandising, cost management, accounting etc)
  • Networking skills


Some might say that it is possible to become a fashion designer without undergoing any professional course. But formal training will definitely help one gain insights into this field. Formal training will also help one build a rewarding career!


In India, fashion designing courses are available in three main formats. There are Degree, Diploma and Certificate courses available in India.


I’d suggest my readers to pursue a good Bachelor’s Degree or Diploma course. Such courses would help one get decent jobs. Further, after pursuing these courses, it is relatively easier to go for higher education (advanced courses).


Steps to become a fashion designer in India


1 Choose a relevant fashion designing course

The first step is to choose a relevant fashion designing course. Here are some of the best Degree and Diploma fashion designing courses in India –

  • Bachelor of Fashion Technology
  • Bachelor of Fashion Design
  • Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) Fashion Design
  • Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) Leather Design
  • Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) Textile Design
  • Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) Accessory Design
  • Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) Fashion Communication
  • Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) Knitwear Design
  • Bachelor Degree in Retail and Fashion Merchandise
  • Diploma in Fashion Technology
  • Diploma in Fashion Design
  • Diploma in Apparel Design
  • Diploma in Jewellery Design
  • Diploma in Fashion Photography
  • Diploma in Retail Merchandising
  • Diploma in Leather Design
  • Diploma in Textile Design
  • Diploma in Visual Merchandising



2 Satisfy the eligibility criteria

Each course has its own eligibility criteria. To secure admission, you must be academically eligible to pursue that particular course. 10+2 passed is the eligibility criteria in cases of some of the courses mentioned above. Eligibility criteria may vary from one course to another.


3 Secure admission

Reputed institutes rely on merit based admission process. Deserving candidates are allotted seats based on the marks scored by them in relevant entrance test / board exam / a combination of both.


Here are some of the relevant fashion designing entrance tests –

  • NIFT Entrance Exam
  • Pearl Academy Entrance Exam
  • NID Entrance Exam
  • CEED
  • SOFT
  • IICD


4 Complete the academic program

Fashion designing courses boasts a holistic mixture of classroom lectures and practical sessions.


Career prospects

Fashion designers have ample job opportunities available in front of them. Some of the prime recruiters are –

  • Apparel manufacturing firms
  • Clothing manufacturing firms
  • Fashion retailers
  • Government handloom departments
  • TV and Film production houses


Entrepreneurship is also an excellent opportunity available in front of fashion designers. They may work as an independent fashion designer, consultant, dressmaker or retailer.

Arun Kallarackal
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