Case study

Apparel designer — Rebecca

Rebecca enjoys the thrill of seeing clothes she's worked on actually in the shops and being worn

How did you get your job?

After graduating with a BA Fashion Design from Bath Spa University I did some temporary work at a local office doing administration-based work before undertaking a two-month unpaid internship in London at a small sportswear design company.

I was then lucky enough to travel to Switzerland to do a six-month paid internship at a freelance design agency. They then asked me to stay for another five months as design assistant. I have just returned from Switzerland and am about to start a new job as an apparel designer.

Try and get as much work experience as you can, even if it is with small companies that no one's heard of

How relevant is your degree to your job?

It is very relevant as I would not have been able to get either my internships or my new position without the skills learnt during my degree.

What are your main work activities?

The tasks of a design assistant change based on the time of year, but a typical day would involve creating computer-based drawings from hand sketches, completing tech packs to send to factories and doing research.

How do you use your degree in your job?

I use my knowledge of garment construction when thinking of new designs. I also use research and drawing skills learnt at university to propose new ideas to clients. I frequently work with Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop to create computer generated drawings of each garment, a skill I also learnt on my course.

What do you enjoy about your job?

I enjoy being creative on a daily basis and seeing garments that I've worked on in the shops and being worn. It's great being involved in a creative team.

What are the most challenging parts of your job?

There is a lot of pressure to create great designs that will sell, but also meeting the clients' needs. There is also a lot of competition from other companies.

Where do you hope to be in five years' time?

I hope to have learnt a lot more about the sportswear design field and to be creating clothes that people enjoy wearing.

Any words of advice for someone who wants to get into this job?

Try and get as much work experience as you can, even if it is with small companies that no one has heard of. Also, resign yourself to the fact you may have to undertake some voluntary work in order to gain that experience.

Find out more

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