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A Day in the Life of a Fashion Designer

Updated: Jul 14, 2023

When you say fashion designer, what comes to mind? Drawing and designing amazing sketches all day and attending glamorous events? True this is part of what we do, but at Numbat House of Apparel we do much more than just fashion designing as we offer manufacturing services as well. We want to strip back the glamorous veil of the fashion industry and tell you what it's really like to work in fashion business and what we do on a daily basis.

The day begins with checking emails. Emails from existing clients and new enquiries. The main part of a fashion designers job is communicating with clients, whether that be about their collection progress or new design ideas. Communication is key and we like to keep it personal with direct contact throughout the design and manufacturing journey. We also love inviting clients to our studio as they can really get a feel for what goes on behind the scenes, look at existing collections we've created and see where their collection will be brought to life!

It is no lie that juggling many clients at different stages of their collection can be tricky at times; one may be at the early stages of design, whilst another may be ready to start manufacturing. But, we care about each and every one of our clients' collection which is why an 8pm finish at the office is not unheard of for us. We treat every clients' collection like it's our own and believe the amount of effort you put in is what you'll receive in return, so coming in to the office on a weekend is also a usual occurrence for us.

Communication also extends to manufacturing as we offer a full clothing production service as well as design. Yep that's right we not only design clothes, we make them too! This is where communication is vital to ensure a smooth production process. A typical phone call from the factory includes telling us a clients samples have been made and are ready for delivery, whilst on the call we tell them about some alterations that another client wants to make from their samples that were sent a week ago. There is a lot of back and forth, especially during the samples stage, which is why we love having our own factory as we know that our garments will be produced to the highest standard and to the exact specifications. We really do look after your collection from start to finish.

Couriers and mail delivering services are literally our best friend! This is perhaps the least glamorous part of the job as we manage our own logistics, from sending samples and fabric swatches to clients to receiving the final clothing collection from the factory. With all this postage and packaging we make sure that we are as environmentally friendly as possible by using card and paper and simply no plastic! Yes that's right, we use 100% no plastic in our packaging!

A major part of fashion designing is creativity. Mood boards, design and trend research all make it possible to gather inspiration and create an amazing clothing collection. Inspiration can literally come from anywhere, even if it's not directly fashion related; from flowers to fruit, animals and architecture. It's also very important that we keep on top of the latest trends and what's currently out there on the market. This ensures that we design and create unique collections for all our clients and also ones that will sell.

Designing beautiful sketches are amazing to look at and can help visualise the collection, but aren't very helpful when it comes to the actual manufacturing. A manufacturer essentially needs a blue print of the specific garment details, measurements, colours, fabrics, stitching and trimmings. This is called a tech pack. Tech packs take up a huge part of the designing process and communicate each garment construction from which the factory uses to create the clothes. We must make sure that every button, stitching, pocket and zip are included on the tech pack with specific size details and where they will be placed on the garment.

Whilst many think a fashion designer only attends fashion shows, we beg to differ as we attend many fabric and textile shows as well. This is very useful for the manufacturing side of our services as we source all fabrics and trims ourselves. We are always on the hunt for new and unique fabrics that we can offer our clients. We are especially interested in sustainable fabrics, supporting conscious production in every way we can.

Design knowledge, creativity, communication skills, textile and manufacturing knowledge, there's a whole lot more to fashion designing than just drawing sketches.

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