Hi! My name is Danielle and I am a senior at Sacred Heart University working towards degrees in Graphic Design and Marketing. I love being involved on campus by being an RA, President of the Fashion club, Costumes Director in the Theater Arts Program and going on alternative spring break trips with Habitat for Humanity. I dream of working in the fashion industry and spent my past summer working as an accessories intern at Marie Claire magazine. College is an amazing time in your life where you learn so much about yourself so make the best of every moment!
Getting Your Foot in the Door of the Fashion Industry
By: Danielle D’Onofrio
When I was a little girl, I could always be found playing dress up in my mothers closet and flipping through the glossy pages of fashion magazines. And like every child, I changed “what I wanted to be when I grew up” from ballerina to teacher to veterinarian, and so on. However, one thing that never changed was my love of fashion. A very wise person once told me “If you are doing something you love, you will never work a day in your life”. I knew then and there that what I wanted was a career in the fashion industry. But the question was how?
The fashion industry is a very small, close community where everyone knows each other. The majority of people in the fashion industry get their job by “knowing someone”, showing how important networking is to build up your contacts. Like securing a job in the fashion industry, most people score an internship by “knowing someone”. If you are starting to freak out that you don’t know anyone in the fashion industry, don’t worry! Like you, I didn’t think I knew anyone in the fashion industry either. However, though you might not know someone directly, you may know someone who knows someone. Talk to your family, friends, parents of friends and professors. Then take a walk over to your “Career Development and Placement Center” at your college to be connected to alumni who have jobs in the fashion industry.
After you receive all these contacts, send them an email with your resume attached inquiring if there are any internship opportunities available. Your resume should highlight anything fashion related you have done such as having a blog or working on costumes for your schools theater productions. Even if your contact does not directly hire interns, they will likely forward your email to someone who does deal with hiring interns. Having someone within the company recommend you will greatly help your application. Don’t forget to send a thank you email to your contact for their help and keep in contact with them.
Let’s say that you are not able to find connections within the fashion industry. That’s still ok, because there are many places online to look for a fashion internship. Some sites include: InternMatch, FreeFashionInternships, InternQueen and my favorite Ed2010. Ed2010 is great if you want to intern at a fashion magazine and is where I got my internship at Marie Claire Magazine. My advice would be to go to these sites and apply for anything that sounds interesting to you. Often we don’t realize how many fashion industry careers there truly are out there ranging from being a buyer to being an editor to working in Public Relations. The only way to figure out exactly which fashion career path is right for you is to try it out. Also don’t be discouraged if after sending out a 100 resumes (I’m not exaggerating, I probably sent out more than 100 resumes) you only get three responses. Those are three great opportunities that may lead you to the fashion career that’s right for you!