You’re focused on building a career as a fashion designer, and whether you want to work for yourself or land an in-house job for an existing brand, you need to prioritize self-promotion and networking. If you’re working to turn your designs on paper into real, tangible products, The Clutch Made Factory can help! Furthermore, here’s how to form your own LLC, manage contracts, and get your name out there in the fashion industry.
Establish an LLC
Maybe you’re a student in high school or college, or you’re already working for a larger fashion brand. Either way, you might be focused on your independent design projects as a side hustle. Even if you’re not running your own full-time business yet, it’s still a good idea to form a limited liability company if you’re selling products.
LLC status will allow you plenty of flexibility, along with tax benefits and personal asset protection. You don’t have to choose between handling the filing process on your own or hiring a lawyer for help - instead, you can submit your paperwork to an online formation service. Look up your state’s formation rules before you get started.
Use Strong Contracts
If you’re working with clients or vendors in any capacity, you need to use contracts to protect your interests. Once you’ve written up terms and agreements, this may be helpful: try using a tool to fill out and sign PDF forms. That way, neither party will have to print anything out. Plus, you can securely transfer PDFs after e-signing.
Create a Portfolio
In order to demonstrate your creativity and design skills, you’ll need a portfolio. You can create a physical portfolio by assembling photos of your best designs in a binder, and you can set up a website to host your virtual lookbook. In addition to photos of full outfits or individual pieces, Craftsy also recommends including examples of fabric swatches and original design sketches. Put your strongest work first, and save the second-best look for last!
Utilize Social Media
Social media platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, TikTok, and even Facebook are all visual mediums - so use them to your advantage as a designer! Planoly recommends sharing examples of brand new designs, going live to engage with your audience, creating videos to highlight seasonal looks, showing off your own outfits of the day, and hosting product giveaways.
Participate in Fashion Shows
Even if you’re brand new to fashion design, you may be able to find opportunities to include your designs in local fashion shows. You might also want to reach out to local photographers, models, or influencers to see if they would be interested in using your products for upcoming shoots. At the end of the day, you need to get your designs in front of an audience!
Network In-Person and Online
Networking is crucial for success in any industry - but it’s especially important if you hope to thrive in a creative field! You can network at in-person events and online. You might want to register for conferences in your area, attend social events hosted by industry organizations, or suggest grabbing coffee or lunch with other designers you’ve met so that you can get to know each other better. Make sure to follow up with anyone you meet at a networking event with an online connection - for example, you can reach out to people on LinkedIn or follow their design pages on Instagram.
Breaking into the fashion industry as a new designer is tough. But with the right promotion strategy, you can get your foot in the door. With these tips, you can file for LLC status, protect yourself with contracts, and start making your mark in this competitive field.
Are you looking for an accessories manufacturer? You can turn to The Clutch Made Factory! Visit our website today to sign up for a free consultation.
Photo via Pexels
Written by Amy Collett (Guest writer)
Amy Collett is creator of Biz Well, a website that helps professionals and entrepreneurs build and strengthen their personal brand.