“Fashion is very important. It is life-enhancing and, like everything that gives pleasure, it is worth doing well”

Vivienne Westwood  


Fashion is the largest employer of all the UK's creative industries. The UK fashion industry is estimated to support 797,000 jobs and its direct value to the UK economy is estimated at £26bn. The sector also provides opportunities to minority groups to a greater extent than most other creative industries. (British Fashion Council)

Careers related to fashion include:

Some of the above may require, or give preference to graduates with, a relevant degree.

Postgraduate courses are also available.

These pages include resources to all the above carer and course areas as well as links to recruitment agencies, job sites and sites giving general information about careers in fashion.

“Fashion is all about happiness. It’s fun. It’s important. But it’s not medicine”
Donatella Versace

General information

Fashion buyer

Fashion & textile design

Designers usually specialise in one sector of the market such as menswear or children's clothes. Most design businesses are based in London, especially Central London. There are around 4,000 fashion graduates each year and only 500 jobs, but highly talented designers are still in demand. Designers may start on £18,000 to £22,000 and senior designers can earn up to £60,000. Around half of all fashion designers are self-employed. You spend a lot of time designing on a computer, but there are also good opportunities for overseas travel.

Fashion forecasting

Fashion journalism

Fashion law

Fashion is not a separate legal discipline and only a few firms (listed below) have a specialist practice in this area. A good all-round knowledge of commercial law, especially intellectual property and contract law, is essential.

Fashion merchandising

Fashion merchandising is a rather broad term that can be used to describe the business side of the fashion industry. Professionals with a fashion merchandising career must still have an eye for style, but they should also have a head for business as well.
This field involves buying, pricing, marketing, displaying, and selling certain types of garments and accessories. (Fashion Merchandising: where Fashion meets Business)

Fashion PR/publicist

Some fashion PR agencies

The news and blog pages of these agencies’ sites will give useful background on the fashion PR industry even where they do not have any current vacancies.

Fashion retail

Just like a shopaholic’s wardrobe, the choice of jobs in fashion retail is endless. From the shop floor in a sales assistant role (part-time experience in this role is a valuable first step into the fashion business), behind the scenes in distribution, or deciding what should be stocked in the first place in a buying and merchandising role, there’s something for every interest.

See also our Retail careers page www.kent.ac.uk/careers/sitereta.htm

Fashion CVs

 “You can never be overdressed or overeducated”

Oscar Wilde 

Fashion CVs must embody style, flair, knowledge of the fashion industry and evidence of creativity. At the same time, as with any CV, they must set out the information that the employer will need to make a decision as clearly as possible and be tailored to the needs and ethos of the company and the particular job you are applying for.

If you are applying for “creative” roles, such as design, you will need a CV that shows your creative flair and a Portfolio of your work. See our pages on How to Write a Creative CV www.kent.ac.uk/careers/cv/creativeCVs.htm

The Creative CV Guide by Jan Cole, published by the University of the Arts London, University of the Creative Arts and University College Falmouth is a superb resource for fashion CVs

CV, covering letter and interview tips from a fashion recruitment agency

Postgraduate Courses

A Master’s degree is not normally essential for entering many areas of the fashion business, but may be helpful in showing your commitment and focus and developing contacts within the industry – especially if the course includes opportunities for internships. The courses listed below are designed for, or will accept applications from, graduates in subjects other than fashion and textiles.

Recruitment agencies

 Job sites

Last fully updated August 2016