Woe To The Struggling Designer…

by Calvin Cox on September 10, 2009

fashion design dress form

Illustration by Camille Wilkinson

The Article and Illustration by Camille Wilkinson details the complexities of a young fashion designer’s journey to becoming a success in the fashion design industry.

Camille Wilkinson is a 25 year design industry veteran, currently freelancing in consultancy capacity in various phases of design and production. She welcomes direct enquiry via: cmllx@aol.com

Woe to the struggling designer – how do they get theirs?

They compete for contacts, funding, marketing, and following.

They spend 2-4 years fashion major in an accredited college of renown, internship in their final year

that leads to ground-up entry-level experience in a viable NY co. …

When all they could have done,

(going the Celebrity Status Way),

is to the Manor been born…

Or cultivate their street ‘cred’,

or marry a spouse famous for sports,

or infamous for being in a rock music band…

A designer could overcome obscurity through Project reality show ‘not-so-mellow’ dramas,

or be the stylist for video vixen ‘glamour’ shoots,

or any of the other periphery ‘MGM’ cast of a thousand players and contenders

toward becoming the NEXT couture / designer

to present at the Big Top Tent ‘really big’ Show-

during a Market week of Magic.

Celebrity labels (celebrities of the aforementioned type) are cool and all,

but it would be nice to know there is a little more integrity to the branding

other than securing that the sun will never set on that celebrity’s name game empire.

Well, in THIS ‘Aesop’ fable, the moral is:

There is Nothing that replaces research;

practice, interviewing for good advice even a little bit of knowledge going in,

about your market niche, and customer base that will yield results that endure.

Before enthusiasm blinds one to logic and sensible action, remember that following the first day of

strategy, success is not an overnight conclusion, without spit and grit ethics.

One’s own commitment to lego-build The brand / The i-d / and The merchandise, is paramount to

achieving Empire Strikes Back status.

Barring being entitled to 15 minutes of fame that might lend us celebrity status,

most of us ‘struggling’ designers must come by our craft and success legitimately.

That is the norm, that is the constant.

And oh so sweet the victory when what one contributes to this industry amounts to something.


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