7 sentimental reasons why you should become a fashion designer

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Are you a dreamer? Long life to you! That’s why this not conventional article is dedicated to you. Today we speak about the 7 sentimental motivations that every aspiring fashion designer should have.

Contrary to what I usually do in my articles, today I would like to say a few words about my experience. I’m 40 years old, I’m a designer and illustrator, a teacher of design and fashion history, an editor and stylist. Pratically I’ve seen, read and done many things all regarding fashion.

What I’ve learned?

That I’m just a bit tired of hearing that fashion is all a question of business. Yes, of course fashion is a business, but this business feeds of visions, imagination and something that has nothing to do with the product. We don’t sell fire extinguishers, band-aids or termal blanckets. We don’t  make usuful things that doesn’t request an aesthetic action. 
Ming Xi photographed by Nick Knight for V Magazine #71 2011 
We explore new worlds, making reasearches and discovering interesting elements to mix in thousands inspirations.

I clearly remember the days when experimentation and unbridled creativity were the motor of fashion. The days of the “Antwerp Six”, of a crazy Galliano or an iconoclast McQueen. And I’m happy to see that many fashion designers and schools are trying to retrieve this spirit, despite of the urban legend which says that the modern fashion designers must be first of all entrepreneurs.

I want to say NO! They should be dreamers.
Here 7 good reasons.

Every style is closely connected to the personal life and inner thoughts of the designer. Because we are speaking about dreams and visions, the designer’s collection is a kind of visual stoyboard of his story, the way of thinking and interpreting the world, the day-to-day experiences. For example happiness and irony can be translated into the creations of designers like Elio Fiorucci, Jeremy Scott or Agatha Ruiz de la Prada. Or the disturbing sense of discomfort and the breathless research of something absolutely and purely beautiful can be read into the collections of Lee Alexander McQueen or Gareth Pugh. So if you want to express the most intimate part of yourself, become a fashion designer. And don’t be afraid to show your sensibility!

Alexander McQueen 1998

We perceive the world through our senses, transforming what we see in feelings and emotions. The objects in themself don’t have a own aesthetics, but is our eye that gives them life and a particular sense of beauty. As said by Denis Diderot, aesthetics is the relationship between us and the things. That can be sometimes strange, contrasting, eclectic or linear and minimal, depending your taste. Things that can appear weirdo for the most, while for someone else representing the essence of beauty itself.
If you should change the aspect of everything that surround you to turn into something unique expressing your feelings, fashion design is the right career for you.

We live in a society of constrictions, laws, rules, words that we cannot say and things that we cannot do. A world that often sacrifices creativity in favor of a more rational and responsive way to behave. Fashion, thought as form of pure art, can be our safety valve not to explode. As an artist, a kind of mature child, the designer can leave his creativity free, can explore imaginative places and subvert the strict rules of what is pre-established without being considered a fool.

Namilia dickini

One of the great aspects of design is the possibility to apply a series of methods and skills to transform an idea into a phisical object. The pathway is not easy and there are many stages to do, but there’s nothing so rewarding as the sensation of have turned a simple concept into a real object that have its own consistency, color and shape. And most important, clothes and accessories may give the positive sensations of being part of a story to who’s wearing them. If you want to be a dream-maker, please choose this job.

“A naked Safari” by Tom Vanderborght
The frenetic rhythm of fashion is common knowledge. Industry goes at a very fast pace and every year is characterized by a minimun of 2 collection up to six or more depending by the seasons and lines of a label. The benefit of being part of a big brand is that you have a team to support your work, the difficult thing is that you must manage with many lines and different collections. You’ll look like a little crazy ball. If you are an entrepreneur instead the main part of work is under your responsability, busting your ass every day (just to be reassuring and gentle!). Yes, fashion design is a hard job but is a real challenge that test your skills, resistance and passion. If you are excited to engage always new adventures and challenging yourself, with fashion you met your match.

Betsey Johnson after her show, 2011
Fashion designer is a traveller, who passes his time between a fashion show in New York, a presentation in Paris and a trade fair in Hong Kong. He must be a multi-tasking and multi-skills worker because this job implements creativity, visionarity, experimentation, technical skills in different fields, entrepreneurial and communicative skills. One of the most fascinating things is that is not a single job, but a multi-level profession that probably will take all your time (day, often week-end and more than one sleepless night). If you are afraid of being bored, I guarantee you that with a fashion design career you will live many exciting and crazy days.

manipulation of Stan Polito’s original photo

Research is the basis of fashion. Any collection starts with a moment of reflection, a phase in which the designer looks around to find new impetus and inspirations. He passes the research time going to art galleries and exhibitions, reading books and magazines, meeting people to have interesting exchanges of views, continuously increasing his cultural level. In the design phase the designer can experiment with materials and learn new technologies improving his skills. And the same thing happens with communication. There’s always something new to learn (as said Giorgio Armani not so many years ago!). If your are curious a “fashion bookworm” this is your sector, baby!
What, you change your mind?

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