Fashion Design

Fashion design – one the hottest, trendiest, fast-moving fields today, is an exciting career offering many possibilities. As a fashion designer you create apparel for men, women, and children, along with accessories such as handbags, shoes, scarves, and more. You may sketch, sew, oversee production and quality control, pitch concepts and ideas to potential clients, and more. Fashion designers often serve as stylists to individuals seeking distinctive looks for special occasions or even for every day wear.

They select clothing and accessories to pull together a unique outfit and “look” tailored to a particular individual’s needs. Fashion designers also work in retail, for large department stores and for smaller boutiques. They may sell apparel to customers, merchandise apparel for maximum appeal, or work as buyers, selecting the next “in” look from the designer runway shows both far and near. These looks will be reproduced and sold by their store, hopefully, by the thousands.

State License Requirements

You do not need to obtain a specific license to work as a fashion designer. However, you may want to look into the various trade and professional organizations, such as the Fashion Industry Association, fashion designers and related professionals, as they can help you figure out how to move ahead with your career.

Education Details

While curricula vary, fashion design programs tend to emphasize the nature of textiles and textile preservation, the process of designing apparel, clothing and apparel production, history of fashion, merchandising and marketing strategy, product development, business practices, sewing, draping, pattern making, and more. You will learn from top industry professionals and have a chance to create your own designs in design studios. Of course, you may choose to study fashion design out of state, perhaps in one of the major fashion centers of the country like New York City. New York features Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) and the Parson’s School of Design, and is the fashion “mecca” of the United States. There are also excellent programs in the state of California and elsewhere.

License Renewal
License Renewal Hours
License Renewal Period
Job Outlook Increase
Between 2012 - 2022

In the state of Maine, the average yearly salary earned by fashion designers is $64,030 (O*Net 2016). The industry is always looking for fresh new ideas and an infusion of new talent. Since the work you can perform as a fashion designer is so variable, it is hard to estimate a salary without knowing the particulars of a specific job. And of course, many factors influence the salary you earn, from years of experience and reputation, to the city you are working in, to what specific job in the fashion industry you are performing (selling, merchandising, buying, etc). Internships are also common in the industry. These enable you to apprentice with experienced professionals. These positions may be paid or unpaid.

Working as a Fashion Designer

Fashion design is a demanding profession because fashion is so fickle and what is in today is out tomorrow. The industry is always on the lookout for the next “big” look. Your day as a fashion designer is likely to be very varied. You may need to meet with clients and potential clients, complete fittings, sew fabrics and make patterns as well as sketch designs. It is quite common to start as an intern or an assistant to a designer, helping out wherever needed. There are many related jobs in the fashion design industry. If you are in retail sales, you will assist customers with their apparel and accessories choices. You may work as a personal shopper, getting to know your clients so you can suggest fashions that will work for a particular need or occasion, and editing the fashions available in your store to those you feel are best suited to the client. Merchandizing is another area of fashion design. Apparel must be displayed attractively and accessibly so that customers can see its potential and how it would work on them. This is the job of merchandisers. Buyers travel the globe in search of the next hot trend to bring to their store and hopefully catch on in a big way. An example of a successful fashion designer in Maine is Brook DeLorme who has been sewing since she was twelve, and selling clothing in Portland boutiques for the past ten years. In 2009, she decided to open her own retail store called Brook There. Behind the display racks on which she shows her clothing are large drafting tables with patterns, scissors, pins, mannequins, sewing machines, and a steam iron. Brook sews every garment herself and paints her labels with her distinctive logo. She sees what she does as being on the edge between something that is manufactured and something that is hand made.

State board Contact Information

Maine Office of Professional and Occupational Regulation - Barbering & Cosmetology Program
35 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333
Phone Number: 207-624-8579
Fax Number: 207-624-8637
E-mail Address:

The Maine State Board of Cosmetology can help you with replacing a lost cosmetology license, updating change of name or change of address information, and acquiring out-of-state and other useful forms, as well as answer additional questions about obtaining a Maine state cosmetology license.

2020-08-05 03:39:40