“I’m a fashion designer and people think, what do I know.” –Vivienne Westwood
Where It All Began
When I was younger I always aspired to be a fashion designer and work in a design house in a big city. I dreamed of running around in heels with a latte in my hand. My journey in fashion began when I enrolled at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM). I graduated with an Associates of Arts in Merchandise Product Development and Bachelor’s of Science in Business Management at the Los Angeles location. My major at FIDM was one of the most well rounded, therefore, I acquired knowledge in both the design and business aspects of the fashion industry. During my Bachelor’s program, I began interning at a company called EVY of California as a design intern. The internship was originally three months, but was extended to last my entire Bachelor’s program. The day after I graduated, I was hired full time, and here we are three years later!
Typical Work Day
So what do I do every day? I am currently an assistant fashion designer, focusing primarily on Walmart development for toddlers and girls (7-16). I serve as the right hand to the head designer in the design development process. My role changes everyday depending on the stage of development. On some days I’ll be trending for new development and others I’ll be sketching this development and sampling.
Spools of Thread
Sketching and art is created on Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; hand sketching is rare. Sampling entails putting bodies into pattern, fitting mocks, sending out blocks for screening, and locating all components needed for sewing an entire garment. Patterns at EVY are created digitally based on the information I have entered in our database known as PLM (Product LifeCycle Management). In PLM I generate a style number, upload sketches, input the bill of materials, and submit the request. Before sending art to screen, I size the art and determine color and treatment callouts through a procedure called art placements. It is my job to be a problem solver and make sure all samples look top notch when it’s time for ship out. Sometimes garments will not cost out; screen prints are not executed as planned; there is a lack of cohesiveness throughout a collection; or construction of garment/drape did not come out as expected. My position is important because I analyze and break down a sketch on paper and bring it to life.
This industry is based on teamwork. I work closely with my pattern-maker, costing person, and sewing room to make sure all samples are executed the way they were envisioned and sketched. Teamwork is important because everyone has different visions/contributions and something you miss, someone else may catch. Traits I would say you need to have to work in this field are; ability to multitask, be a team player, work well under pressure, communicate well with others, be dependable, a problem solver, and most importantly… passion.
Over the years, my role has become well rounded with the addition of responsibilities or knowledge I have acquired. I never thought I would be in the childrenswear market, but I’m extremely grateful for the knowledge and skills I have acquired. Nothing is more rewarding than seeing samples you worked on at retail stores. It’s also a plus getting to hear about the latest trends before anyone else!
FA18 Hello Kitty Fashion Top
SU16 Hello Kitty Skater Dress
FA18 Hello Kitty Leggings Set