Field of Study: Fashion Design
Fashion design programs prepare people to design clothing for commercial sale. Students learn to create designs both manually and using computers. They also learn about management in the fashion industry.
Are you obsessed with fashion? Do you flip through fashion magazines and watch fashion shows, all the while envisioning your own designs on the models? Do you feel you have a unique sense of style? Do you prefer to design your own clothes rather than buy the standard fare in clothing stores? Do you fantasize about creating costumes for theater and film? If you answered "yes" to any of those questions, then fashion design may be the program of study for you.
As a fashion designer, you use your artistic abilities to design all kinds of apparel and accessories, from underwear to outerwear, hats to shoes. You could work on producing your designs as well. You might supervise a team of people or even take up some scissors and do your own cutting and sewing. You could also design clothing under a particular brand name or develop your own brand.
As a student in this program, you learn to combine your artistic sensibility with technical skills. You study the properties of different types of fabrics and fibers. You learn fashion design techniques, using both computer technology and traditional methods. You also learn about the history of fashion and study the ways that culture has influenced fashion trends.
Nearly 140 schools offer programs in fashion or apparel design. You can earn a certificate or an associate degree. You can also earn a bachelor's degree. After high school, a certificate usually takes one year of full-time study and an associate degree typically takes two. A bachelor's degree usually takes four years.