SFD056: Mailbag! Your Fashion Industry Q's Answered - Courses & Free Tutorials on Adobe Illustrator, Tech Packs & Freelancing for Fashion Designers
Successful Fashion Designer Podcast with Sew Heidi

SFD056: Mailbag! Your Fashion Industry Q’s Answered

Many of you have loads of Q’s about working in fashion…and I know it can be hard to find answers. Maybe you don’t know any industry experts to ask. Maybe your coworkers are tight lipped and not willing to share their secrets. Maybe you just don’t even know where to go. Which is why I started the monthly mailbag episode to the SFD podcast!

Once a month, I take the best questions from listeners and answer them on the show. (If you want to submit your Q, email it to me anytime at podcast [at] sewheidi [dot]com for consideration.)

Here are the questions I answer in this mailbag episode!

On balancing working full-time and promoting yourself as a fashion freelancer, from Kayla [02:42]:

I would love to freelance, but am finding it difficult to work 35-40 hours a week and promote myself as a freelance designer. How did you juggle working full time and getting your start up running??

On doing freelance fashion work for competitive brands, from Dani [07:35]:

I’m trying to narrow my niche into athletic wear — how do you freelance for multiple alike brands without crossing the line of conflicting interests? Or do you suggest to only work for one brand at a time? For example: I probably wouldn’t work for LuLuLemon (the dream) and for Nike (also the dream) at the same time.

On freelancing remote for fashion brands, from PKP [11:43]:

I have only one doubt regarding freelancing in Fashion. You had talked a lot about meeting the right people, in you “Fashion Portfolio” guide. Since I am from India, and as far as surface pattern design is concerned, I have worked with print studios in the USA and also in Europe. I have not met any of them in person, but still manage to work with them.I found all these clients with the help of email pitches. I would just give them a link to my portfolio website, is it possible to do the same with Fashion? Will companies I pitch to, be willing to hire a freelance designer without a personal meeting?

On finding a design job if you’ve been out of school for a while, from Nancy [17:11]:

I studied fashion design for four years I have my bachelors but I graduated 2 years ago I’ve been stuck and I’m scared I’ll never be able to get myself out of this hole. I never want to give up on my dreams but now at 23 with a cashier job my dreams seem so far. All I want to do is find a job in the fashion industry doing what I love to do which is design. One day I plan on owning my own clothing company but where do I start should I go back to school which is what I’m thinking of. Honestly I’m scared stuck and lost I just want to make my degree worth my time and money.

On the necessity of PLM experience for fashion jobs, from Lavendor [22:36]:

Could you speak to the importance of having working knowledge of PLM ( Centric and Flex) as it has become critical when applying for Assistant to Senior level design positions…?

On brand expectations for sketching fashion flats in Illustrator, from Rosella [27:52]:

Is it common to draw Cads without references (photo) or mannequin? For an interview, me and the other candidates had to draw a leather jacket from scratch! Having only the jacket itself in front of us. And then, we had to load a check/plaid pattern in a shirt with Photoshop. Is it useful to know how to render the textures also?

On breaking into fashion if you don’t have any professional industry experience, from Hannah [34:29]:

I basically did the opposite of you where I went to school for Textile and Apparel Management but found myself as a graphic designer as that has always been a hobby of mine. I have recently been missing the fashion world but still love my design jobs. How do you think I should go about combining the two. Any suggestions or tips?

Resources mentioned in this episode:

If you enjoyed this episode and have questions you want answered, email them to podcast [at] sewheidi [dot] com for consideration. I’ll pick the best ones and include them in the monthly mailbag show.

Save this “Mailbag Episode” to Pinterest so you can find it later!

Successful Fashion Designer Podcast with Sew Heidi
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