A career in fashion design is not only exciting, but is incredibly diverse and rewarding as well. Beyond the fashion design option, a fashion qualification opens you up to the world of journalism, theatre, entertainment, the arts, retail, and more. But first, you need to get into a top fashion design school which means getting your application right the first time.


Here are some tips on how to apply to the top fashion design schools to secure your career in the world of fashion.


1.     Do Your Research

Getting a degree or diploma in fashion design is well worth the effort, but you need to ensure it’s coming from a top fashion design school. To find the best fashion design school in your area, you need to start doing a bit of research. Outline which fashion design schools meet your needs in terms of courses and budget, and then research the institution’s reputation, accreditation, faculty expertise, and location. You might want to study close by, but there’s always the option of international study as well. Find out what graduates felt about the institution by connecting with them on social media or via the school’s admission officer. You can also ask for a physical visit to the fashion design school if it’s close enough. Once you’ve done your research, make sure you have a list of at least your top 4 fashion design schools.


2.     Prepare Your Portfolio

Your portfolio is key for any admission into a fashion design school, so make sure yours is strong, showcasing absolutely your best work. It’s best to start preparing your portfolio early, and include all your top sketches, illustrations, garment designs, sewing projects, and any relevant creative projects or collaborations. Research other examples so that you can put together a well-structured portfolio that is clear and easy to follow. It must also be an accurate representation of your personal taste and diverse skill range.

Read More: Fashion Diploma: Exploring The Benefits And Career Opportunities


3.     Build Up Your References and Recommendations

Your portfolio is a great reflection of you and your voice, but a great fashion design school is going to want to know what others feel about your skills as well. Start building up a selection of references and letters of recommendation from teachers, mentors, employers, or those in the industry who can verify your unique skills, work ethic, creativity, and benefit to any institution.


4.     Upskill Where You Can

Seek out every opportunity you can to upgrade your fashion-related skills where possible. Fashion is such a diverse industry that your skills don’t just need to be limited to fashion drawing and garment making. Rather, look at computer programmes you could learn, particularly computer-aided design (CAD) software. Learn what you can about photography, and fashion history, and stay on top of emerging trends. All of this can help you secure a spot at your favourite fashion design school.

Read more: What Are The Requirements To Study Fashion Design?


5.     Review All Admission Requirements

The admission process for most fashion design schools can be quite rigorous, with a lot of the documentation and preparation requiring time and work. That’s why you should review the admission requirements and application deadlines of your chosen fashion design schools well ahead of time. You can expect to submit a completed application form, portfolio, transcripts, letters of recommendation, high school results, and possibly a personal statement.


6.     Sign Up for Apprenticeships and Internships

To better position yourself as a top candidate for a fashion design school, you should get as much work experience as possible – even if it’s an internship. While in high school, take whatever part-time and holiday positions you can to gain real-world experience and build up your letter of recommendation.

Read More: Choosing The Right Fashion Design School


7.     Be Prepared

Prepare yourself for an in-person interview as part of the application process. Start researching questions you might be asked and honest answers. You should also prepare questions that you might have for the institution, as this shows you are prepared and engaged. Expect questions about your portfolio, your particular area of interest, and why you’re considering this particular institution.


8.     Submit Your Application

Once you’ve got everything together, have someone in the industry check over it if you can, and then submit your application ahead of the deadline. Once submitted, you should follow up with the admission office to confirm they have received your application. While you can enquire about the status of your application, remember they will have many to get through so don’t overburden them.


Villioti Fashion Institute is one of the top international fashion design schools, and certainly one that should be included in your list of top schools for application. Their online application process is simple and welcoming, with support offered throughout the process.