Training

The Successful Fashion Designer

Helping You Get Ahead in Fashion by Sew Heidi

The fashion industry is brutally competitive...and we're all trying to get ahead. The problem is that everyone's so tight lipped with their strategies and resources. The Successful Fashion Designer is an "all secrets revealed" show by industry expert designer and educator Sew Heidi to help you gain the confidence, skills and insights to make it in a cutthroat market. The show covers topics such as breaking into the industry, getting promotions and raises, launching your own label and becoming a successful freelancer. Every episode is packed full of actionable steps you can implement right away to get ahead. Now.

Episodes

SFD019: What's it really like to manufacture apparel in the US?
48:12
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 48:12
SFD019: What's it really like to manufacture apparel in the US?

Kathryn Hilderbrand is a master tailor, designer and business entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience working in the fashion industry. She founded Good Clothing Company in 2015 to create small runs of production for designers, and is passionate about bringing clothing manufacturing back to the United States. In this interview, she shares why it's important to bring manufacturing back to the US, how it's unfair to expect a garment to cost the same as a cup of coffee, and what designers are doing to educate their consumers about ethical manufacturing.

You will learn:
  • Why manufacturing and production are coming back to the states
  • The number one challenge US factories face
  • How doing small batch production and going direct to consumer can make you more money
  • Why US production costs are starting to compete against Chinese factories
  • How to educate your consumer about your product and why the cost is more than some retail
  • The downfalls of fast fashion and why customers are starting to shop differently
  • Why consumers have been trained that fashion should be cheap, and how to help them rethink their purchases
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD018: Advice for Entry Level Fashion Career Professionals
52:24
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 52:24
SFD018: Advice for Entry Level Fashion Career Professionals

Dior Bediako founded Pepper Your Talk out of personal frustration. As a young designer beginning her career in fashion, she realized there was little to no support available for designers to work they way up from an entry level job. In her own words, PYT is that friend that will: (a) steal all the unanswered fashion questions from your head (b) ANSWER THEM with the help of our cheeky industry connections (c) Make you laugh (when you want to cry) throughout the process of navigating the career cross-roads. In our interview, she delivers on all of these things!

You will learn:
  • How to tailor your resume / CV towards fashion jobs even if you have no experience
  • How to write a cover letter / introduction that gets noticed
  • What you can do to be prepared for an interview, and how to decrease your anxiety
  • Why you must have an opinion, even if everyone doesn’t agree
  • How to add value to your team and get noticed in your company
  • Why you should always be thinking about what’s next in your career
  • Why it’s ok not to know everything
  • The number one question you should ask in every interview
  • How to follow up and get feedback when you don’t get the job
  • What to do when you resume goes into a black hole
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

Happy Labor Day!
38
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 38
Happy Labor Day!

I took the day off today and hope you did too! We'll be back next week with another great episode.

SFD017: Why You Shouldn't Design for Everyone with Anna of VMora
50:04
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 50:04
SFD017: Why You Shouldn't Design for Everyone with Anna of VMora

Anna Livermore is founder of VMora, a fashion business and production consulting company that works one on one with independent designers. In this interview, she shares where many designers waste money that has little to no return, why you should look at your first round of production as a test, and why staying specific and niche with your idea is better than trying to please every body.

You will learn:
  • How much you need to budget for each design
  • Why timeline, costing and budgeting are essential for success
  • The number one (and number two) thing brands spend money on that have little to no ROI (and where to spend your $$ instead)
  • How to make sure your fit is perfect so it sells
  • Where most creative designers get stuck during development and production
  • The challenges of finding an investor for your fashion collection
  • How to build your audience before launching a product
  • Why having a specific niche audience will help you build lifelong customers
  • The value of staying true to your product and story and not trying to create something for everyone
  • The common mistake most designers make when choosing a market
  • How to budget your finances and time to increase success
  • Why being humble will get you further than having a big ego
  • How to make sure a factory is a good match for your product
  • Why you should look at your first round of production as a test
Guest Info & Resources:

Looking for more resources?

SFD 016: How to Get Freelance Fashion Design Jobs on Upwork
55:34
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 55:34
SFD 016: How to Get Freelance Fashion Design Jobs on Upwork

Kim Dippel is a fashion designer with 12 years of experience working for surf brands like Oneil and Quiksilver. After having a baby and moving away from a hub, she wanted to try freelancing. After not having any luck with her existing contacts, she turned to UpWork where she successfully landed a few ongoing clients that have kept her consistently busy. In the interview, Kim shares how to land your first few gigs, why honesty and transparency is essential to building relationships, and how to raise your rates with clients.

You will learn:
  • What you can do to land your first few jobs and build up your ratings
  • How to write a custom proposal and get the client’s attention
  • Red flags to look for when deciding whether to take a project or not
  • What to watch out for when bidding project based (flat fee) work
  • How to negotiate your rate without cutting yourself short
  • How to transition clients off UpWork
  • Strategies to track correspondence (phone, email) to make sure you get paid for your time
  • Why your website should be a cohesive representation of you as a brand
  • Why it’s ok to ask your client a lot of questions
Guest Info & Resources:

Looking for more resources?

SFD 015: How to Get Factories to Take You Seriously
01:12:52
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 01:12:52
SFD 015: How to Get Factories to Take You Seriously

Kathleen Fasanella is author of one of the fashion industry’s best resource books, The Entrepreneur's Guide to Sewn Product Manufacturing. Kathleen is a trained pattern maker with almost 4 decades of experience, and now owns a factory in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In this interview, she shares why speaking the right language can help factories and vendors take you seriously, how to make sure your production stays on track so you don’t get bumped out of line, and why designing isn’t always as glamorous as it can seem.

You will learn:
  • Less expensive and more effective alternatives to FIT or FIDM for technical design
  • Why you may be more technically inclined than you think (hint: if you can sew, you are)
  • The difference between a manufacturer and a sewing contractor
  • How speaking the right language will help suppliers take you seriously
  • Why you should only produce one style with a new factory
  • The realities of being a designer, and why it’s not as glamorous as you think
  • How to make sure your production stays on track and you don’y get bumped out of line for a bigger order
Guest Info & Resources: Looking for more resources?

SFD014: The (Sometimes Ugly) Truth About A Fashion Design Career
01:16:13
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 01:16:13
SFD014: The (Sometimes Ugly) Truth About A Fashion Design Career

Having a job as fashion designer glamorous and creative. Honest, it isn’t always that way. Most people don’t talk about this publicly, but Emily Keller is different. Which is why I knew I had to invite her on the show. In this episode, Emily shares her experience working as an employee the perception of working as a designer versus the reality, how to figure out if pursuing fashion as a second career is right for you, and the often limited creativity you’ll actually use in your job.

You will learn:
  • The difference between what you think a fashion designer does and what they really do
  • How creative you really get to be as a designer
  • Pros and cons of working for big runway brands versus smaller lesser known brands
  • The perception of working in fashion versus the reality
  • Tips on pursuing fashion as a second career
  • How to understand what you’re really getting into when you go into fashion
  • Why fashion designers don’t dress well
Guest Info & Resources: Looking for more resources?

SFD013: The Step by Step Production Process for Fashion Design Entrepreneurs
54:13
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 54:13
SFD013: The Step by Step Production Process for Fashion Design Entrepreneurs

In this episode I’m chatting with Abbie Ellis, co-founder of Stitch Method - a Chicago fashion agency that helps you DEFINE your market, DEVELOP your product and DELIVER it to your customers. In the interview, she walks through a step by step overview of the production process, how to work backwards from costing and budgeting to design, and why a tech pack is essential for every product, no matter how simple or where you’re manufacturing.

You will learn:
      • How long it takes to go from idea to production (hint: it’s longer than you think!)
      • How much you should budget to get your design into production
      • How to know whether you should manufacture overseas or locally
      • A step by step walk through of the production process from start to finish
      • Why your factory is one of your most valuable resources
      • How to work backwards from costing and budgeting to design
      • The value of thinking bigger picture and creating long term goals
Guest Info & Resources: Production Checklist

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD012: How to build a group of raving fans before you have a product
01:14:02
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 01:14:02
SFD012: How to build a group of raving fans before you have a product

In this episode I’m chatting with Colleen Monroe, founder of Untucked Workwear - clothes designed for women who embrace a lifestyle filled with gumption and a whole lot of go. After a year and a half of hard, Colleen launched a successful Kickstarter to fund the first round of production of her three piece collection. In the interview, she talks about how to build an email list and an audience before you even have a product, why fit is one of the most important factors to your success, how to deal with the financial realities of launching a label, and the importance of engaging with your customer

You will learn:
  • How to build tons of raving fans for life before you even have a product
  • How to collaborate with non-fashion brands to grow your audience
  • Why it's better to take your time to make sure your product is done right
  • The financial challenges of launching a label and advice to overcome them
  • The non-glamorous parts of the fashion world
  • How to have a successful Kickstarter campaign
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD011: The Number One Thing to Include On Your Fashion Design Resume
56:08
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 56:08
SFD011: The Number One Thing to Include On Your Fashion Design Resume

In this episode I’m chatting with Sheena Schoolcraft, a fashion designer in NYC who’s worked with brands like OshKosh, Tommy Hilfiger and Dress Barn. During our conversation, Sheena shares how to present your online portfolio and why it should be different than your physical portfolio, why being easy to work with can be key to your success, what you can bring to an interview to impress the hiring manager, and the best strategies to make sure your resume stands out.

You will learn:
  • How to make your resume results driven - even if you don't have a lot of experience
  • The value of relationships and a positive attitude
  • Why happy hour and casual work engagements may be where you land your next gig
  • The one thing nobody brings to an interview but should
  • The importance of showing brands how you can benefit them
  • What employers really want in their employees
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD010: Strategies to Manufacture Your Fashion Brand Overseas
01:09:53
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 01:09:53
SFD010: Strategies to Manufacture Your Fashion Brand Overseas

In this episode I’m chatting with Shilpa, founder of Nayali, an activewear brand for women bra size "D-cup & Up". Shilpa spent over a decade working for huge brands like Conde Nast, Fubu, and Gap. She took all her experience, quit her job, and went to Bali to do a solo label. A year and a half later after some big mistakes and a lot of tears, she launched her brand, Nayali. This is her story, her lessons learned, and her advice to others starting a brand.

You will learn:
  • The importance of capturing your customer with a solution to their problem
  • How to tighten your assortment (and the dangers of offering too many skus)
  • The etiquette of working with factories in different countries
  • How to push your factories to get your product made the right way
  • Why it’s safe to stick with what you know at the beginning, and worry about growth later
  • The pros of getting really specific with your collection
  • The benefits of getting help from others and why you shouldn’t do this alone
  • How to convince a factory to take your order - even if it doesn’t meet their minimums
  • Why you have to speak up to not be taken advantage of
  • The parts of the process you should do locally, and what you can source overseas
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD009: How to Grow Sales & Maximize Profits for Your Fashion Brand
01:00:27
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 01:00:27
SFD009: How to Grow Sales & Maximize Profits for Your Fashion Brand

In this episode I’m chatting with Traceena & Lauren, founder of The Sales Concept, which helps designers maximize profits through merchandising and sales strategies. This is one of the most content packed episodes to date, and if you have - or want to start - a label, grab a pen and paper to take notes and listen carefully to everything these two experts have to say. Traceena and Lauren give step by step instructions of how to approach buyers at shops and trade shows, word for word scripts of what to say on phone calls or in emails, and the exact steps to follow from the time you find the shop to writing the order.

You will learn:
  • What merchandising is and why it’s crucial to your success
  • The simple “backwards” strategy of pricing your products
  • The number one merchandising mistake designers make
  • How to approach buyers in person, in email and by phone (and which is best)
  • The etiquette for following up with buyers (how much is too much!?)
  • The easiest way to build your prospect list
  • Why your prospect list is your secret weapon (and how big it should be)
  • How to know if a buyer is serious or not
  • The simple trick for approaching buyers at trade shows
  • Why custom line sheets are key to getting the order
  • How to follow up with buyers without sounding sales
  • The value of repping your line yourself
  • Why you have to get feedback during every buyer meeting
  • The number one question you have to ask during your first interaction with a buyer
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD008: How to Have A Successful Career as A Textile Designer
49:50
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 49:50
SFD008: How to Have A Successful Career as A Textile Designer

In this episode I’m chatting with Michelle Fifis, founder of Pattern Observer and creator of the Textile Design Lab, a blog and community that helps creatives grow their textile design business. Michelle’s done textile work for Columbia Sportswear, Lucy Activewear, Jantzen Swimwear, Perry Ellis and had been featured in Stylesight.com, Elle Decor, and Nordstrom. In the interview, she shares how she got started and worked her way up in the industry, her strategy for leaving her full time job to start freelancing, and how she grew her blog into a successful online business. Michelle and I also talked about how to choose and start working with an agency or print house, how to stay motivated when you feel deflated, and not only how to price your work, but how to gracefully raise your prices.

You will learn:
  • The role a textile designer plays in the fashion world
  • The pros and cons of working with an agent or print house
  • How to rediscover your creativity when you feel stuck
  • The importance of having patience with your career growth
  • How to stay up to date on trends if you don't have access to expensive services like WGSN
  • The importance of having a community and not working in a vacuum
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD007: Using Your Network to get more Freelance Fashion Work
42:39
2017-09-22 13:29:31 UTC 42:39
SFD007: Using Your Network to get more Freelance Fashion Work

Gia's a fashion freelancer who’s worked with huge names like Northface and Columbia Sportswear as well as small startup brands. Her eye for technical design and product development plus her friendly personality and hard working attitude is why most of her freelance gigs have luckily fallen right into her lap. In this interview, Gia and I chat about why your network is the best resource for new work, why it’s ok to charge premium prices, and creative ways to break into the industry without going to fashion school and starting with no experience.

You will learn:
  • The importance of going above and beyond in all the work you do
  • Why it’s ok not to ask a lot of questions and not know everything
  • How to get started in the industry without any experience
  • The pros and cons of charging hourly vs by project and when to choose what
  • Why the people you already know are the best resource for future opportunities
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD006: Job Hunting & Resume Advice for Fashion Industry Professionals
45:23
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 45:23
SFD006: Job Hunting & Resume Advice for Fashion Industry Professionals

In this episode I’m chatting with Chris Kidd, founder of Style Careers, the largest fashion only job listing site. With inside access to fashion industry employers and exposure to job seekers at their career fairs, Chris has learned what works - and what doesn't - in the job hunting process. We discussed the importance of presenting yourself as a modern candidate, what sectors of the industry are booming, and the most important information to include on your resume.

You will learn:
  • What the first inch of your resume must include to catch the employer's attention
  • What parts of the industry are dying, and what parts are booming
  • Guidance for young job seekers and advice for breaking into the industry
  • Advice for older job seekers to stay up to date and relevant
  • The importance of taking risks
  • How fashion is competing with other "must have" items and why designers need to be aware of this
  • Why the fashion industry is in a rut and what designers need to do to break out of it
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD 005: How to Make a Career as a Fashion Illustrator with Danielle Meder
01:23:39
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 01:23:39
SFD 005: How to Make a Career as a Fashion Illustrator with Danielle Meder

In this episode I’m chatting with Danielle Meder who’s had a 10 year career as a professional fashion illustrator. She’s done live runway sketching at fashion weeks worldwide has a book called Draw Fashion now. Danielle shares how she broke past her fears of approaching people at events, how improving her appearance increased her success, and how she estimates and prices her freelance work to make sure she doesn’t leave any money on the table.

YOU WILL LEARN:

  • Breaking out of your shell and getting past fears of approaching people you want to work with
  • How your appearance affects your success
  • The “sex and cash theory” for jobs and why you need a balance
  • How to estimate project fees and knowing when to pad your price
  • Playing the pricing game with clients to make sure you’re not leaving money on the table
  • What Danielle’s up to next now that she’s done knocking on fashion’s door

GUEST INFO AND RESOURCES:

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 004: Freelancing Strategies for Fashion Designers with Marissa Borelli
01:06:38
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 01:06:38
SFD 004: Freelancing Strategies for Fashion Designers with Marissa Borelli

Marissa ditched her volleyball career during her junior year at UCLA to enroll in Parsons - without the support of her parents. She turned her love for sports and fashion into a successful career as an activewear designer which she's been doing for over 10 years, working with brands like Lululemon and Athleta. She also had her own line of scarves with distribution to over 60 retail outlets internationally, and she now freelances full time from the comfort of her home while being a twin mom to two boys. Marissa shares exactly how she pitches new clients, prices her projects to make a fair wage, and successfully does that scary networking thing to get more work.

YOU WILL LEARN:

How to use your industry contacts to your advantage

What to do to make yourself easy to work with and get more jobs

How to get inside the customer’s head to make sure your designs are on target

How to price yourself (and estimate projects) as a freelancer to make sure you get paid a fair wage

How to use email to keep in touch with your clients and make sure they think of you first for projects

Approaching companies at trade shows and other networking events without being "salesy"

Why researching the brands you want to work with is key landing the job

GUEST INFO & RESOURCES

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://bit.ly/SFD-review – it really helps! GET THE STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO BEING A SUCCESSFUL FREELANCER http://sfdnetwork.com/download4/

SFD 003: How to Ask for (and Get) a Promotion in Fashion with Brian McIntyre
38:11
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 38:11
SFD 003: How to Ask for (and Get) a Promotion in Fashion with Brian McIntyre

Brian didn't even discover that he had an interest in fashion until high school, and then he dove head first in. Four years later armed with a degree, he avoided design jobs due to his lack of proficiency in Adobe Illustrator. He finally got an opportunity he couldn't pass up, so "lied" about his AI skills in the interview and landed the job. He "faked it till he made it" and frantically got up to speed in the software. Since then, he's used his skills, drive and determination to advance his fashion career and get promoted within his first year as a designer.

YOU WILL LEARN

  • How curiosity can drive you to success
  • Why you have to ask for what you want (or else you probably won't get it)
  • Why it's ok to not keep up with everything that's going on in the industry
  • How to approach your boss (or your boss' boss) to get the promotion you want
  • Why defending your designs and perspective is crucial
  • What it's like working for small vs. large brands

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps!

LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 002: Using Email to Successfully Pitch Freelance Clients with Melissa Mendez
58:51
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 58:51
SFD 002: Using Email to Successfully Pitch Freelance Clients with Melissa Mendez

After Melissa experienced what she thought was a heart attack while working in the corporate fashion world for over 10 years, she knew she needed to make a big life change. For over two years, she's been working as a freelancer and running her own design agency. She uses her industry network and cold pitching in email to get new clients (including a $15,000 contract from one email!) and in this episode, Melissa shares it all.

YOU WILL LEARN

How to transition from corporate to freelance fashion design work How to use free resources to educate yourself and build your own business Strategies to get new clients using your current network Using email to pitch and land clients The 4 podcasts Melissa listens to that helped grow her business What you need to do before cold emailing any company or person to offer your services CLICK HERE FOR MELISSA'S PITCH TEMPLATE GUEST INFO & RESOURCES http://www.melissamendezdesignstudio.com/ http://www.womencraftingsuccess.com/ https://www.smartpassiveincome.com/podcasts/ http://www.internetbusinessmastery.com/ibmapodcast/ http://ask.garyvaynerchuk.com/ http://www.girlboss.com/podcast/ ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 001: How to Get Your First Job in the Fashion Industry with Bjorn Bengtsson
41:01
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 41:01
SFD 001: How to Get Your First Job in the Fashion Industry with Bjorn Bengtsson

If you want to break into the fashion industry, it seems logical that you’d need to go to fashion school. But what if that’s not for you? There are creative ways you can approach opportunities to get your foot in the door. Bjorn shares exactly how to get an interview, and what he’s looking for during that first meeting. These are things you can do on your own (without a fashion school degree) to secure your first opportunity.

YOU WILL LEARN:

The value of internships and building relationships What to include (and not include) in your portfolio Why Illustrator skills are mandatory – but what other skills you need to survive The skills learned in school vs what’s required in the real world How to better prepare yourself for a job while you’re in school How to create opportunities if you don’t have a fashion school degree Why a curious mind will take you far How to get in touch with Bjorn for guidance (thank you for this generous offer Bjorn!) GUEST INFO & RESOURCES https://www.linkedin.com/in/bjornbengtsson/ https://www.businessoffashion.com/ https://www.untuckit.com/ ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

How to Get Funding and Launch A Successful Fashion Brand
42:46
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 42:46
How to Get Funding and Launch A Successful Fashion Brand

Trying to make it as a new fashion brand is insanely cutthroat. The competition is fierce and there are hundreds of thousands of designers fighting to be the next big thing. Luckily, there are some simple things you can do to make sure you're miles ahead of the competition. This is part 2 of a two-part interview with Rochelle Behrens who owns The-Shirt.com, a succesful startup fashion label. She shares her best advice and some of the strategies she used to get her brand off the ground...and fast. You will learn: * Why you may not want to get VC funding to launch your fashion label, but other places where you can easily get money * The single most important thing you must do before going into production so you don’t fail before you’ve even started * How to figure out how much product you should buy so you’re not stuck with tons of inventory you can’t sell * The simplest way to to get loads of amazing press coverage, even if you don’t have any connections * The number one thing you’re not doing that will easily get you swarms of paying customers and loyal fans who will tell the world about you * How to figure out if you should manufacture locally or offshore, even if you have no idea where to start * The easiest way to quickly get noticed as a new fashion label and stand out amongst the competition You can listen to part 1 here: https://soundcloud.com/sew-heidi/rochelle-behrens-the-shirt-interview

Why Solving A Problem Is Essential to Building A Successful Brand
45:45
2017-09-22 13:29:32 UTC 45:45
Why Solving A Problem Is Essential to Building A Successful Brand

Rochelle Behrens launched her label, The Shirt, almost seven years ago after she saw a gap(e) in the market for properly fitting and fashionable button down shirts. The problem she wanted to solve? It's called "the gape", and some of us know it all too well. After years of working in politics in Washington, DC, Rochelle became frustrated and felt unprofessional in the ill-fitting shirts available in the retail market. So, she ditched her career in politics to pursue a more fashionable one of her own. Not only did she launch a succesful label, she was able to patent the technology. And if you know anything about patents and copyrighting fashion, you know this is no easy task. I'm absolutely thrilled and honored introduce you to her. In part one of this two part interview, she generously shares her insights on breaking into this competitive industry, the challenges of selling online, and the keys to her success. In a competitive and brutal industry like fashion, you know that designers can be very tight lipped about their ways. In this candid interview, Rochelle tells all with specific tactics, strategies and actions she took (and that you can too!) to get her company off the ground and build it up to the successful brand that it is today. You will learn: - Steps you can take to transition from a career that has nothing to do with fashion to starting your brand - How one introduction can be all you need to get started - Why being inquisitive is the best way to learn - Strategies to sell bigger and what you can do to take your sales to the next level - Why differentiating yourself in the market is the key to success - How getting out of your comfort zone can be best way to make connections - Why it’s easier to succeed if you define a super specific niche for your brand - How to strategically navigate the “secretive” fashion industry and actually get answers to all your questions Music by buukwerm (Creative Commons) / Don't Stop

SFD024: Part 2: Fighting Fear (when it feels crippling)
40:47
2017-10-23 23:43:50 UTC 40:47
SFD024: Part 2: Fighting Fear (when it feels crippling)

Last week, in episode 23 (part 1), I introduced you to Solomon Eversole, who has the most calm and collected approach to creativity I've ever witnessed.

He also has the same approach to fear. There's no panic or frantic "hair sticking straight up" frenzy moments.

At least, that's not what you see from the outside.

Solomon fully admits that he's a nervous, anxious wreck internally. But he carries himself calmly so that the fear and panic don't overcome or cripple his potential.

And his strategy works.

With 15 years experience in the corporate fashion world (plus a few of his own collections), he's gotten so good at remaining calm in stressful situations that his demeanor spreads like wild fire through any room. His team and coworkers tell him this regularly.

You'll hear it in his voice throughout the entire interview, and I promise you'll experience the contagiousness firsthand. Within 5 minutes, I bet you feel more relaxed, inspired and ready to take on life than you have in a while.

Solomon is an awesome human being with a great view on life. I am thrilled to now call him a friend, and if I ever had to return to the corporate world, he's a man I would be thrilled to call a boss.

I hope you enjoy this episode, it's one of my absolute favorites so far.

You will learn:
  • How behaving like the person you want to be will transform you into that person
  • How to reframe your mindset around fear so it doesn’t prevent your progress
  • Why we should be childlike, not childish
  • Why Solomon asks himself “what’s the most loving thing I can right now” to figure out his next steps for everything
  • Why you should never assume what someone wants (especially in an interview)

Guest Info & Resources:

SFD023: Part 1: How to Stay Creative (when there's never any time)
57:31
2017-10-23 23:43:51 UTC 57:31
SFD023: Part 1: How to Stay Creative (when there's never any time)

Solomon Eversole has the most calm and collected approach to creativity I've ever witnessed. With 15 years experience working in the corporate world and on his own collections, he's figured out the best ways to help himself and his team express their artistic side in an industry that thrives on tight deadlines and late nights.

Solomon explains his "plan first" approach to creativity. Giving himself a comfortable amount of time, the right mindset, and being prepared with the necessary tools, his outcomes are not only better, but he feels more peace of mind during the creative process.

If you struggle with creative block, creative panic, or creative pressure, listen to this episode now. Not only will Solomon inspire you with new ways to approach your creativity, his cool, calm and collected demeanor will provide you with a sense of relief in an industry where we all too often feel overwhelm.

And watch for Part 2 of our interview on overcoming fear. It's out next week.

You will learn:
  • How “Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance”
  • Why you need to give yourself the time and freedom to explore your creativity
  • The importance of controlling what you can can control (because plenty of things will become urgent on their own)
  • Why planning gets a bad name but why it’s essential
  • The 80% rule and why you always need a “fresh set of eyes”
  • Why mood boards aren’t as essential to the creative process as you may think
  • How to relieve yourself from the pressure of being creative
  • How to prioritize your time and efforts when you feel like everything has to be done now
  • That it's ok if everything you create isn't brand new

Guest Info & Resources:

SFD022: Why We All Must Ask: Who Made My Clothes?
39:14
2017-10-23 23:43:52 UTC 39:14
SFD022: Why We All Must Ask: Who Made My Clothes?

Carry Somers is founder of Fashion Revolution - a global movement calling for greater transparency, sustainability and ethics in the fashion industry. If you’ve seen the “Who Made My Clothes” sign that millions of consumers, brands and producers have shared on social media, then you know what Fashion Revolution is doing. Simply put, they’re asking us to be more curious about where our clothes come from and who made them.

You will learn:
  • The harsh truths about what goes on behind the scenes in many factories
  • Why higher price doesn’t mean ethically made
  • Why paying fair wages and creating safe workplaces for garment workers only increases your garment cost by $0.50
  • Why being curious can have the biggest impact towards a more ethical supply chain
  • What you can do - as just one person - to make a change and have a voice

Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD021: How to Get Funding for Your Fashion Startup
31:20
2017-10-23 23:43:52 UTC 31:20
SFD021: How to Get Funding for Your Fashion Startup

Billie Whitehouse has been called the Elon Musk of Fashion. In just 4 1/2 years, she's launched multiple successful wearable tech products. Her most recent, Nadi X, is a line of activated yoga apparel that listens & responds to your body. In the interview, Billie shares her valuable lessons learned about getting funding, advice for growing your circle of friends to help support you during your ventures, and how to create a product that your customer loves.

You will learn:
  • How to know when you’re ready to go after funding
  • Why you’ll probably get rejected 100+ times (and that’s ok)
  • Why you should become friends with your competition
  • How to get over the dirty “networking” word
  • Why you need to put your customer, not yourself, first
  • The difference between emotional vs quantifiable data in fashion tech, and which direction we’re moving towards
  • The importance of creating experiences for people through the clothes they wear
  • Why you should look at yourself as a designer of the future
  • Where fashion tech is heading and why you can’t ignore it

Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD020: How to Source Low Minimum Fabrics & Trims for Your Fashion Collection
01:09:39
2017-10-23 23:43:52 UTC 01:09:39
SFD020: How to Source Low Minimum Fabrics & Trims for Your Fashion Collection

Jay is your absolute one stop shop for sourcing anything and everything you need to make your product, including fabrics, trims, hangtags, labels and so much more. In this interview, Jay shares why indie designers are seeing more success now than they were 5 years ago, what materials you can cut costs on and where you may want to spend a little more, and why buying from NYC’s garment district is the biggest mistake most designers make.

You will learn:
  • The different supplier tiers: retail, jobber, fabric importer, converter and mill
  • Why you need to be really careful buying from a jobber
  • The challenges of sourcing fabric in the NYC garment district
  • Why independent designers are seeing greater success now than 5 years ago
  • The importance of continuity in the supplies you source
  • Why logistically it’s more expensive to do small batch production overseas than locally
  • What materials you can cut corners and costs on, and what ones you don’t want to

Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD019: What's it really like to manufacture apparel in the US?
48:12
2017-10-23 23:43:53 UTC 48:12
SFD019: What's it really like to manufacture apparel in the US?

Kathryn Hilderbrand is a master tailor, designer and business entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience working in the fashion industry. She founded Good Clothing Company in 2015 to create small runs of production for designers, and is passionate about bringing clothing manufacturing back to the United States. In this interview, she shares why it's important to bring manufacturing back to the US, how it's unfair to expect a garment to cost the same as a cup of coffee, and what designers are doing to educate their consumers about ethical manufacturing.

You will learn:
  • Why manufacturing and production are coming back to the states
  • The number one challenge US factories face
  • How doing small batch production and going direct to consumer can make you more money
  • Why US production costs are starting to compete against Chinese factories
  • How to educate your consumer about your product and why the cost is more than some retail
  • The downfalls of fast fashion and why customers are starting to shop differently
  • Why consumers have been trained that fashion should be cheap, and how to help them rethink their purchases
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD018: Advice for Entry Level Fashion Career Professionals
52:24
2017-10-23 23:43:53 UTC 52:24
SFD018: Advice for Entry Level Fashion Career Professionals

Dior Bediako founded Pepper Your Talk out of personal frustration. As a young designer beginning her career in fashion, she realized there was little to no support available for designers to work they way up from an entry level job. In her own words, PYT is that friend that will: (a) steal all the unanswered fashion questions from your head (b) ANSWER THEM with the help of our cheeky industry connections (c) Make you laugh (when you want to cry) throughout the process of navigating the career cross-roads. In our interview, she delivers on all of these things!

You will learn:
  • How to tailor your resume / CV towards fashion jobs even if you have no experience
  • How to write a cover letter / introduction that gets noticed
  • What you can do to be prepared for an interview, and how to decrease your anxiety
  • Why you must have an opinion, even if everyone doesn’t agree
  • How to add value to your team and get noticed in your company
  • Why you should always be thinking about what’s next in your career
  • Why it’s ok not to know everything
  • The number one question you should ask in every interview
  • How to follow up and get feedback when you don’t get the job
  • What to do when you resume goes into a black hole
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

Happy Labor Day!
38
2017-10-23 23:43:53 UTC 38
Happy Labor Day!

I took the day off today and hope you did too! We'll be back next week with another great episode.

SFD017: Why You Shouldn't Design for Everyone with Anna of VMora
50:04
2017-10-23 23:43:54 UTC 50:04
SFD017: Why You Shouldn't Design for Everyone with Anna of VMora

Anna Livermore is founder of VMora, a fashion business and production consulting company that works one on one with independent designers. In this interview, she shares where many designers waste money that has little to no return, why you should look at your first round of production as a test, and why staying specific and niche with your idea is better than trying to please every body.

You will learn:
  • How much you need to budget for each design
  • Why timeline, costing and budgeting are essential for success
  • The number one (and number two) thing brands spend money on that have little to no ROI (and where to spend your $$ instead)
  • How to make sure your fit is perfect so it sells
  • Where most creative designers get stuck during development and production
  • The challenges of finding an investor for your fashion collection
  • How to build your audience before launching a product
  • Why having a specific niche audience will help you build lifelong customers
  • The value of staying true to your product and story and not trying to create something for everyone
  • The common mistake most designers make when choosing a market
  • How to budget your finances and time to increase success
  • Why being humble will get you further than having a big ego
  • How to make sure a factory is a good match for your product
  • Why you should look at your first round of production as a test
Guest Info & Resources:

Looking for more resources?

SFD 016: How to Get Freelance Fashion Design Jobs on Upwork
55:34
2017-10-23 23:43:54 UTC 55:34
SFD 016: How to Get Freelance Fashion Design Jobs on Upwork

Kim Dippel is a fashion designer with 12 years of experience working for surf brands like Oneil and Quiksilver. After having a baby and moving away from a hub, she wanted to try freelancing. After not having any luck with her existing contacts, she turned to UpWork where she successfully landed a few ongoing clients that have kept her consistently busy. In the interview, Kim shares how to land your first few gigs, why honesty and transparency is essential to building relationships, and how to raise your rates with clients.

You will learn:
  • What you can do to land your first few jobs and build up your ratings
  • How to write a custom proposal and get the client’s attention
  • Red flags to look for when deciding whether to take a project or not
  • What to watch out for when bidding project based (flat fee) work
  • How to negotiate your rate without cutting yourself short
  • How to transition clients off UpWork
  • Strategies to track correspondence (phone, email) to make sure you get paid for your time
  • Why your website should be a cohesive representation of you as a brand
  • Why it’s ok to ask your client a lot of questions
Guest Info & Resources:

Looking for more resources?

SFD 015: How to Get Factories to Take You Seriously
01:12:52
2017-10-23 23:43:54 UTC 01:12:52
SFD 015: How to Get Factories to Take You Seriously

Kathleen Fasanella is author of one of the fashion industry’s best resource books, The Entrepreneur's Guide to Sewn Product Manufacturing. Kathleen is a trained pattern maker with almost 4 decades of experience, and now owns a factory in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In this interview, she shares why speaking the right language can help factories and vendors take you seriously, how to make sure your production stays on track so you don’t get bumped out of line, and why designing isn’t always as glamorous as it can seem.

You will learn:
  • Less expensive and more effective alternatives to FIT or FIDM for technical design
  • Why you may be more technically inclined than you think (hint: if you can sew, you are)
  • The difference between a manufacturer and a sewing contractor
  • How speaking the right language will help suppliers take you seriously
  • Why you should only produce one style with a new factory
  • The realities of being a designer, and why it’s not as glamorous as you think
  • How to make sure your production stays on track and you don’y get bumped out of line for a bigger order
Guest Info & Resources: Looking for more resources?

SFD014: The (Sometimes Ugly) Truth About A Fashion Design Career
01:16:13
2017-10-23 23:43:55 UTC 01:16:13
SFD014: The (Sometimes Ugly) Truth About A Fashion Design Career

Having a job as fashion designer glamorous and creative. Honest, it isn’t always that way. Most people don’t talk about this publicly, but Emily Keller is different. Which is why I knew I had to invite her on the show. In this episode, Emily shares her experience working as an employee the perception of working as a designer versus the reality, how to figure out if pursuing fashion as a second career is right for you, and the often limited creativity you’ll actually use in your job.

You will learn:
  • The difference between what you think a fashion designer does and what they really do
  • How creative you really get to be as a designer
  • Pros and cons of working for big runway brands versus smaller lesser known brands
  • The perception of working in fashion versus the reality
  • Tips on pursuing fashion as a second career
  • How to understand what you’re really getting into when you go into fashion
  • Why fashion designers don’t dress well
Guest Info & Resources: Looking for more resources?

SFD013: The Step by Step Production Process for Fashion Design Entrepreneurs
54:13
2017-10-23 23:43:55 UTC 54:13
SFD013: The Step by Step Production Process for Fashion Design Entrepreneurs

In this episode I’m chatting with Abbie Ellis, co-founder of Stitch Method - a Chicago fashion agency that helps you DEFINE your market, DEVELOP your product and DELIVER it to your customers. In the interview, she walks through a step by step overview of the production process, how to work backwards from costing and budgeting to design, and why a tech pack is essential for every product, no matter how simple or where you’re manufacturing.

You will learn:
      • How long it takes to go from idea to production (hint: it’s longer than you think!)
      • How much you should budget to get your design into production
      • How to know whether you should manufacture overseas or locally
      • A step by step walk through of the production process from start to finish
      • Why your factory is one of your most valuable resources
      • How to work backwards from costing and budgeting to design
      • The value of thinking bigger picture and creating long term goals
Guest Info & Resources: Production Checklist

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD012: How to build a group of raving fans before you have a product
01:14:02
2017-10-23 23:43:55 UTC 01:14:02
SFD012: How to build a group of raving fans before you have a product

In this episode I’m chatting with Colleen Monroe, founder of Untucked Workwear - clothes designed for women who embrace a lifestyle filled with gumption and a whole lot of go. After a year and a half of hard, Colleen launched a successful Kickstarter to fund the first round of production of her three piece collection. In the interview, she talks about how to build an email list and an audience before you even have a product, why fit is one of the most important factors to your success, how to deal with the financial realities of launching a label, and the importance of engaging with your customer

You will learn:
  • How to build tons of raving fans for life before you even have a product
  • How to collaborate with non-fashion brands to grow your audience
  • Why it's better to take your time to make sure your product is done right
  • The financial challenges of launching a label and advice to overcome them
  • The non-glamorous parts of the fashion world
  • How to have a successful Kickstarter campaign
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD011: The Number One Thing to Include On Your Fashion Design Resume
56:08
2017-10-23 23:43:56 UTC 56:08
SFD011: The Number One Thing to Include On Your Fashion Design Resume

In this episode I’m chatting with Sheena Schoolcraft, a fashion designer in NYC who’s worked with brands like OshKosh, Tommy Hilfiger and Dress Barn. During our conversation, Sheena shares how to present your online portfolio and why it should be different than your physical portfolio, why being easy to work with can be key to your success, what you can bring to an interview to impress the hiring manager, and the best strategies to make sure your resume stands out.

You will learn:
  • How to make your resume results driven - even if you don't have a lot of experience
  • The value of relationships and a positive attitude
  • Why happy hour and casual work engagements may be where you land your next gig
  • The one thing nobody brings to an interview but should
  • The importance of showing brands how you can benefit them
  • What employers really want in their employees
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD010: Strategies to Manufacture Your Fashion Brand Overseas
01:09:53
2017-10-23 23:43:56 UTC 01:09:53
SFD010: Strategies to Manufacture Your Fashion Brand Overseas

In this episode I’m chatting with Shilpa, founder of Nayali, an activewear brand for women bra size "D-cup & Up". Shilpa spent over a decade working for huge brands like Conde Nast, Fubu, and Gap. She took all her experience, quit her job, and went to Bali to do a solo label. A year and a half later after some big mistakes and a lot of tears, she launched her brand, Nayali. This is her story, her lessons learned, and her advice to others starting a brand.

You will learn:
  • The importance of capturing your customer with a solution to their problem
  • How to tighten your assortment (and the dangers of offering too many skus)
  • The etiquette of working with factories in different countries
  • How to push your factories to get your product made the right way
  • Why it’s safe to stick with what you know at the beginning, and worry about growth later
  • The pros of getting really specific with your collection
  • The benefits of getting help from others and why you shouldn’t do this alone
  • How to convince a factory to take your order - even if it doesn’t meet their minimums
  • Why you have to speak up to not be taken advantage of
  • The parts of the process you should do locally, and what you can source overseas
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD009: How to Grow Sales & Maximize Profits for Your Fashion Brand
01:00:27
2017-10-23 23:43:56 UTC 01:00:27
SFD009: How to Grow Sales & Maximize Profits for Your Fashion Brand

In this episode I’m chatting with Traceena & Lauren, founder of The Sales Concept, which helps designers maximize profits through merchandising and sales strategies. This is one of the most content packed episodes to date, and if you have - or want to start - a label, grab a pen and paper to take notes and listen carefully to everything these two experts have to say. Traceena and Lauren give step by step instructions of how to approach buyers at shops and trade shows, word for word scripts of what to say on phone calls or in emails, and the exact steps to follow from the time you find the shop to writing the order.

You will learn:
  • What merchandising is and why it’s crucial to your success
  • The simple “backwards” strategy of pricing your products
  • The number one merchandising mistake designers make
  • How to approach buyers in person, in email and by phone (and which is best)
  • The etiquette for following up with buyers (how much is too much!?)
  • The easiest way to build your prospect list
  • Why your prospect list is your secret weapon (and how big it should be)
  • How to know if a buyer is serious or not
  • The simple trick for approaching buyers at trade shows
  • Why custom line sheets are key to getting the order
  • How to follow up with buyers without sounding sales
  • The value of repping your line yourself
  • Why you have to get feedback during every buyer meeting
  • The number one question you have to ask during your first interaction with a buyer
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD008: How to Have A Successful Career as A Textile Designer
49:50
2017-10-23 23:43:57 UTC 49:50
SFD008: How to Have A Successful Career as A Textile Designer

In this episode I’m chatting with Michelle Fifis, founder of Pattern Observer and creator of the Textile Design Lab, a blog and community that helps creatives grow their textile design business. Michelle’s done textile work for Columbia Sportswear, Lucy Activewear, Jantzen Swimwear, Perry Ellis and had been featured in Stylesight.com, Elle Decor, and Nordstrom. In the interview, she shares how she got started and worked her way up in the industry, her strategy for leaving her full time job to start freelancing, and how she grew her blog into a successful online business. Michelle and I also talked about how to choose and start working with an agency or print house, how to stay motivated when you feel deflated, and not only how to price your work, but how to gracefully raise your prices.

You will learn:
  • The role a textile designer plays in the fashion world
  • The pros and cons of working with an agent or print house
  • How to rediscover your creativity when you feel stuck
  • The importance of having patience with your career growth
  • How to stay up to date on trends if you don't have access to expensive services like WGSN
  • The importance of having a community and not working in a vacuum
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD007: Using Your Network to get more Freelance Fashion Work
42:39
2017-10-23 23:43:57 UTC 42:39
SFD007: Using Your Network to get more Freelance Fashion Work

Gia's a fashion freelancer who’s worked with huge names like Northface and Columbia Sportswear as well as small startup brands. Her eye for technical design and product development plus her friendly personality and hard working attitude is why most of her freelance gigs have luckily fallen right into her lap. In this interview, Gia and I chat about why your network is the best resource for new work, why it’s ok to charge premium prices, and creative ways to break into the industry without going to fashion school and starting with no experience.

You will learn:
  • The importance of going above and beyond in all the work you do
  • Why it’s ok not to ask a lot of questions and not know everything
  • How to get started in the industry without any experience
  • The pros and cons of charging hourly vs by project and when to choose what
  • Why the people you already know are the best resource for future opportunities
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD006: Job Hunting & Resume Advice for Fashion Industry Professionals
45:23
2017-10-23 23:43:59 UTC 45:23
SFD006: Job Hunting & Resume Advice for Fashion Industry Professionals

In this episode I’m chatting with Chris Kidd, founder of Style Careers, the largest fashion only job listing site. With inside access to fashion industry employers and exposure to job seekers at their career fairs, Chris has learned what works - and what doesn't - in the job hunting process. We discussed the importance of presenting yourself as a modern candidate, what sectors of the industry are booming, and the most important information to include on your resume.

You will learn:
  • What the first inch of your resume must include to catch the employer's attention
  • What parts of the industry are dying, and what parts are booming
  • Guidance for young job seekers and advice for breaking into the industry
  • Advice for older job seekers to stay up to date and relevant
  • The importance of taking risks
  • How fashion is competing with other "must have" items and why designers need to be aware of this
  • Why the fashion industry is in a rut and what designers need to do to break out of it
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD 005: How to Make a Career as a Fashion Illustrator with Danielle Meder
01:23:39
2017-10-23 23:43:59 UTC 01:23:39
SFD 005: How to Make a Career as a Fashion Illustrator with Danielle Meder

In this episode I’m chatting with Danielle Meder who’s had a 10 year career as a professional fashion illustrator. She’s done live runway sketching at fashion weeks worldwide has a book called Draw Fashion now. Danielle shares how she broke past her fears of approaching people at events, how improving her appearance increased her success, and how she estimates and prices her freelance work to make sure she doesn’t leave any money on the table.

YOU WILL LEARN:

  • Breaking out of your shell and getting past fears of approaching people you want to work with
  • How your appearance affects your success
  • The “sex and cash theory” for jobs and why you need a balance
  • How to estimate project fees and knowing when to pad your price
  • Playing the pricing game with clients to make sure you’re not leaving money on the table
  • What Danielle’s up to next now that she’s done knocking on fashion’s door

GUEST INFO AND RESOURCES:

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 004: Freelancing Strategies for Fashion Designers with Marissa Borelli
01:06:38
2017-10-23 23:44:00 UTC 01:06:38
SFD 004: Freelancing Strategies for Fashion Designers with Marissa Borelli

Marissa ditched her volleyball career during her junior year at UCLA to enroll in Parsons - without the support of her parents. She turned her love for sports and fashion into a successful career as an activewear designer which she's been doing for over 10 years, working with brands like Lululemon and Athleta. She also had her own line of scarves with distribution to over 60 retail outlets internationally, and she now freelances full time from the comfort of her home while being a twin mom to two boys. Marissa shares exactly how she pitches new clients, prices her projects to make a fair wage, and successfully does that scary networking thing to get more work.

YOU WILL LEARN:

How to use your industry contacts to your advantage

What to do to make yourself easy to work with and get more jobs

How to get inside the customer’s head to make sure your designs are on target

How to price yourself (and estimate projects) as a freelancer to make sure you get paid a fair wage

How to use email to keep in touch with your clients and make sure they think of you first for projects

Approaching companies at trade shows and other networking events without being "salesy"

Why researching the brands you want to work with is key landing the job

GUEST INFO & RESOURCES

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://bit.ly/SFD-review – it really helps! GET THE STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO BEING A SUCCESSFUL FREELANCER http://sfdnetwork.com/download4/

SFD 003: How to Ask for (and Get) a Promotion in Fashion with Brian McIntyre
38:11
2017-10-23 23:44:01 UTC 38:11
SFD 003: How to Ask for (and Get) a Promotion in Fashion with Brian McIntyre

Brian didn't even discover that he had an interest in fashion until high school, and then he dove head first in. Four years later armed with a degree, he avoided design jobs due to his lack of proficiency in Adobe Illustrator. He finally got an opportunity he couldn't pass up, so "lied" about his AI skills in the interview and landed the job. He "faked it till he made it" and frantically got up to speed in the software. Since then, he's used his skills, drive and determination to advance his fashion career and get promoted within his first year as a designer.

YOU WILL LEARN

  • How curiosity can drive you to success
  • Why you have to ask for what you want (or else you probably won't get it)
  • Why it's ok to not keep up with everything that's going on in the industry
  • How to approach your boss (or your boss' boss) to get the promotion you want
  • Why defending your designs and perspective is crucial
  • What it's like working for small vs. large brands

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps!

LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 002: Using Email to Successfully Pitch Freelance Clients with Melissa Mendez
58:51
2017-10-23 23:44:01 UTC 58:51
SFD 002: Using Email to Successfully Pitch Freelance Clients with Melissa Mendez

After Melissa experienced what she thought was a heart attack while working in the corporate fashion world for over 10 years, she knew she needed to make a big life change. For over two years, she's been working as a freelancer and running her own design agency. She uses her industry network and cold pitching in email to get new clients (including a $15,000 contract from one email!) and in this episode, Melissa shares it all.

YOU WILL LEARN

How to transition from corporate to freelance fashion design work How to use free resources to educate yourself and build your own business Strategies to get new clients using your current network Using email to pitch and land clients The 4 podcasts Melissa listens to that helped grow her business What you need to do before cold emailing any company or person to offer your services CLICK HERE FOR MELISSA'S PITCH TEMPLATE GUEST INFO & RESOURCES http://www.melissamendezdesignstudio.com/ http://www.womencraftingsuccess.com/ https://www.smartpassiveincome.com/podcasts/ http://www.internetbusinessmastery.com/ibmapodcast/ http://ask.garyvaynerchuk.com/ http://www.girlboss.com/podcast/ ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 001: How to Get Your First Job in the Fashion Industry with Bjorn Bengtsson
41:01
2017-10-23 23:44:01 UTC 41:01
SFD 001: How to Get Your First Job in the Fashion Industry with Bjorn Bengtsson

If you want to break into the fashion industry, it seems logical that you’d need to go to fashion school. But what if that’s not for you? There are creative ways you can approach opportunities to get your foot in the door. Bjorn shares exactly how to get an interview, and what he’s looking for during that first meeting. These are things you can do on your own (without a fashion school degree) to secure your first opportunity.

YOU WILL LEARN:

The value of internships and building relationships What to include (and not include) in your portfolio Why Illustrator skills are mandatory – but what other skills you need to survive The skills learned in school vs what’s required in the real world How to better prepare yourself for a job while you’re in school How to create opportunities if you don’t have a fashion school degree Why a curious mind will take you far How to get in touch with Bjorn for guidance (thank you for this generous offer Bjorn!) GUEST INFO & RESOURCES https://www.linkedin.com/in/bjornbengtsson/ https://www.businessoffashion.com/ https://www.untuckit.com/ ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

How to Get Funding and Launch A Successful Fashion Brand
42:46
2017-10-23 23:44:02 UTC 42:46
How to Get Funding and Launch A Successful Fashion Brand

Trying to make it as a new fashion brand is insanely cutthroat. The competition is fierce and there are hundreds of thousands of designers fighting to be the next big thing. Luckily, there are some simple things you can do to make sure you're miles ahead of the competition. This is part 2 of a two-part interview with Rochelle Behrens who owns The-Shirt.com, a succesful startup fashion label. She shares her best advice and some of the strategies she used to get her brand off the ground...and fast. You will learn: * Why you may not want to get VC funding to launch your fashion label, but other places where you can easily get money * The single most important thing you must do before going into production so you don’t fail before you’ve even started * How to figure out how much product you should buy so you’re not stuck with tons of inventory you can’t sell * The simplest way to to get loads of amazing press coverage, even if you don’t have any connections * The number one thing you’re not doing that will easily get you swarms of paying customers and loyal fans who will tell the world about you * How to figure out if you should manufacture locally or offshore, even if you have no idea where to start * The easiest way to quickly get noticed as a new fashion label and stand out amongst the competition You can listen to part 1 here: https://soundcloud.com/sew-heidi/rochelle-behrens-the-shirt-interview

Why Solving A Problem Is Essential to Building A Successful Brand
45:45
2017-10-23 23:44:02 UTC 45:45
Why Solving A Problem Is Essential to Building A Successful Brand

Rochelle Behrens launched her label, The Shirt, almost seven years ago after she saw a gap(e) in the market for properly fitting and fashionable button down shirts. The problem she wanted to solve? It's called "the gape", and some of us know it all too well. After years of working in politics in Washington, DC, Rochelle became frustrated and felt unprofessional in the ill-fitting shirts available in the retail market. So, she ditched her career in politics to pursue a more fashionable one of her own. Not only did she launch a succesful label, she was able to patent the technology. And if you know anything about patents and copyrighting fashion, you know this is no easy task. I'm absolutely thrilled and honored introduce you to her. In part one of this two part interview, she generously shares her insights on breaking into this competitive industry, the challenges of selling online, and the keys to her success. In a competitive and brutal industry like fashion, you know that designers can be very tight lipped about their ways. In this candid interview, Rochelle tells all with specific tactics, strategies and actions she took (and that you can too!) to get her company off the ground and build it up to the successful brand that it is today. You will learn: - Steps you can take to transition from a career that has nothing to do with fashion to starting your brand - How one introduction can be all you need to get started - Why being inquisitive is the best way to learn - Strategies to sell bigger and what you can do to take your sales to the next level - Why differentiating yourself in the market is the key to success - How getting out of your comfort zone can be best way to make connections - Why it’s easier to succeed if you define a super specific niche for your brand - How to strategically navigate the “secretive” fashion industry and actually get answers to all your questions Music by buukwerm (Creative Commons) / Don't Stop

SFD024: Part 2: Fighting Fear (when it feels crippling)
40:47
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 40:47
SFD024: Part 2: Fighting Fear (when it feels crippling)

Last week, in episode 23 (part 1), I introduced you to Solomon Eversole, who has the most calm and collected approach to creativity I've ever witnessed.

He also has the same approach to fear. There's no panic or frantic "hair sticking straight up" frenzy moments.

At least, that's not what you see from the outside.

Solomon fully admits that he's a nervous, anxious wreck internally. But he carries himself calmly so that the fear and panic don't overcome or cripple his potential.

And his strategy works.

With 15 years experience in the corporate fashion world (plus a few of his own collections), he's gotten so good at remaining calm in stressful situations that his demeanor spreads like wild fire through any room. His team and coworkers tell him this regularly.

You'll hear it in his voice throughout the entire interview, and I promise you'll experience the contagiousness firsthand. Within 5 minutes, I bet you feel more relaxed, inspired and ready to take on life than you have in a while.

Solomon is an awesome human being with a great view on life. I am thrilled to now call him a friend, and if I ever had to return to the corporate world, he's a man I would be thrilled to call a boss.

I hope you enjoy this episode, it's one of my absolute favorites so far.

You will learn:
  • How behaving like the person you want to be will transform you into that person
  • How to reframe your mindset around fear so it doesn’t prevent your progress
  • Why we should be childlike, not childish
  • Why Solomon asks himself “what’s the most loving thing I can right now” to figure out his next steps for everything
  • Why you should never assume what someone wants (especially in an interview)

Guest Info & Resources:

SFD023: Part 1: How to Stay Creative (when there's never any time)
57:31
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 57:31
SFD023: Part 1: How to Stay Creative (when there's never any time)

Solomon Eversole has the most calm and collected approach to creativity I've ever witnessed. With 15 years experience working in the corporate world and on his own collections, he's figured out the best ways to help himself and his team express their artistic side in an industry that thrives on tight deadlines and late nights.

Solomon explains his "plan first" approach to creativity. Giving himself a comfortable amount of time, the right mindset, and being prepared with the necessary tools, his outcomes are not only better, but he feels more peace of mind during the creative process.

If you struggle with creative block, creative panic, or creative pressure, listen to this episode now. Not only will Solomon inspire you with new ways to approach your creativity, his cool, calm and collected demeanor will provide you with a sense of relief in an industry where we all too often feel overwhelm.

And watch for Part 2 of our interview on overcoming fear. It's out next week.

You will learn:
  • How “Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance”
  • Why you need to give yourself the time and freedom to explore your creativity
  • The importance of controlling what you can can control (because plenty of things will become urgent on their own)
  • Why planning gets a bad name but why it’s essential
  • The 80% rule and why you always need a “fresh set of eyes”
  • Why mood boards aren’t as essential to the creative process as you may think
  • How to relieve yourself from the pressure of being creative
  • How to prioritize your time and efforts when you feel like everything has to be done now
  • That it's ok if everything you create isn't brand new

Guest Info & Resources:

SFD022: Why We All Must Ask: Who Made My Clothes?
39:14
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 39:14
SFD022: Why We All Must Ask: Who Made My Clothes?

Carry Somers is founder of Fashion Revolution - a global movement calling for greater transparency, sustainability and ethics in the fashion industry. If you’ve seen the “Who Made My Clothes” sign that millions of consumers, brands and producers have shared on social media, then you know what Fashion Revolution is doing. Simply put, they’re asking us to be more curious about where our clothes come from and who made them.

You will learn:
  • The harsh truths about what goes on behind the scenes in many factories
  • Why higher price doesn’t mean ethically made
  • Why paying fair wages and creating safe workplaces for garment workers only increases your garment cost by $0.50
  • Why being curious can have the biggest impact towards a more ethical supply chain
  • What you can do - as just one person - to make a change and have a voice

Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD021: How to Get Funding for Your Fashion Startup
31:20
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 31:20
SFD021: How to Get Funding for Your Fashion Startup

Billie Whitehouse has been called the Elon Musk of Fashion. In just 4 1/2 years, she's launched multiple successful wearable tech products. Her most recent, Nadi X, is a line of activated yoga apparel that listens & responds to your body. In the interview, Billie shares her valuable lessons learned about getting funding, advice for growing your circle of friends to help support you during your ventures, and how to create a product that your customer loves.

You will learn:
  • How to know when you’re ready to go after funding
  • Why you’ll probably get rejected 100+ times (and that’s ok)
  • Why you should become friends with your competition
  • How to get over the dirty “networking” word
  • Why you need to put your customer, not yourself, first
  • The difference between emotional vs quantifiable data in fashion tech, and which direction we’re moving towards
  • The importance of creating experiences for people through the clothes they wear
  • Why you should look at yourself as a designer of the future
  • Where fashion tech is heading and why you can’t ignore it

Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD020: How to Source Low Minimum Fabrics & Trims for Your Fashion Collection
01:09:39
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:09:39
SFD020: How to Source Low Minimum Fabrics & Trims for Your Fashion Collection

Jay is your absolute one stop shop for sourcing anything and everything you need to make your product, including fabrics, trims, hangtags, labels and so much more. In this interview, Jay shares why indie designers are seeing more success now than they were 5 years ago, what materials you can cut costs on and where you may want to spend a little more, and why buying from NYC’s garment district is the biggest mistake most designers make.

You will learn:
  • The different supplier tiers: retail, jobber, fabric importer, converter and mill
  • Why you need to be really careful buying from a jobber
  • The challenges of sourcing fabric in the NYC garment district
  • Why independent designers are seeing greater success now than 5 years ago
  • The importance of continuity in the supplies you source
  • Why logistically it’s more expensive to do small batch production overseas than locally
  • What materials you can cut corners and costs on, and what ones you don’t want to

Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD019: What's it really like to manufacture apparel in the US?
48:12
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 48:12
SFD019: What's it really like to manufacture apparel in the US?

Kathryn Hilderbrand is a master tailor, designer and business entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience working in the fashion industry. She founded Good Clothing Company in 2015 to create small runs of production for designers, and is passionate about bringing clothing manufacturing back to the United States. In this interview, she shares why it's important to bring manufacturing back to the US, how it's unfair to expect a garment to cost the same as a cup of coffee, and what designers are doing to educate their consumers about ethical manufacturing.

You will learn:
  • Why manufacturing and production are coming back to the states
  • The number one challenge US factories face
  • How doing small batch production and going direct to consumer can make you more money
  • Why US production costs are starting to compete against Chinese factories
  • How to educate your consumer about your product and why the cost is more than some retail
  • The downfalls of fast fashion and why customers are starting to shop differently
  • Why consumers have been trained that fashion should be cheap, and how to help them rethink their purchases
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD018: Advice for Entry Level Fashion Career Professionals
52:24
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 52:24
SFD018: Advice for Entry Level Fashion Career Professionals

Dior Bediako founded Pepper Your Talk out of personal frustration. As a young designer beginning her career in fashion, she realized there was little to no support available for designers to work they way up from an entry level job. In her own words, PYT is that friend that will: (a) steal all the unanswered fashion questions from your head (b) ANSWER THEM with the help of our cheeky industry connections (c) Make you laugh (when you want to cry) throughout the process of navigating the career cross-roads. In our interview, she delivers on all of these things!

You will learn:
  • How to tailor your resume / CV towards fashion jobs even if you have no experience
  • How to write a cover letter / introduction that gets noticed
  • What you can do to be prepared for an interview, and how to decrease your anxiety
  • Why you must have an opinion, even if everyone doesn’t agree
  • How to add value to your team and get noticed in your company
  • Why you should always be thinking about what’s next in your career
  • Why it’s ok not to know everything
  • The number one question you should ask in every interview
  • How to follow up and get feedback when you don’t get the job
  • What to do when you resume goes into a black hole
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

Happy Labor Day!
38
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 38
Happy Labor Day!

I took the day off today and hope you did too! We'll be back next week with another great episode.

SFD017: Why You Shouldn't Design for Everyone with Anna of VMora
50:04
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 50:04
SFD017: Why You Shouldn't Design for Everyone with Anna of VMora

Anna Livermore is founder of VMora, a fashion business and production consulting company that works one on one with independent designers. In this interview, she shares where many designers waste money that has little to no return, why you should look at your first round of production as a test, and why staying specific and niche with your idea is better than trying to please every body.

You will learn:
  • How much you need to budget for each design
  • Why timeline, costing and budgeting are essential for success
  • The number one (and number two) thing brands spend money on that have little to no ROI (and where to spend your $$ instead)
  • How to make sure your fit is perfect so it sells
  • Where most creative designers get stuck during development and production
  • The challenges of finding an investor for your fashion collection
  • How to build your audience before launching a product
  • Why having a specific niche audience will help you build lifelong customers
  • The value of staying true to your product and story and not trying to create something for everyone
  • The common mistake most designers make when choosing a market
  • How to budget your finances and time to increase success
  • Why being humble will get you further than having a big ego
  • How to make sure a factory is a good match for your product
  • Why you should look at your first round of production as a test
Guest Info & Resources:

Looking for more resources?

SFD 016: How to Get Freelance Fashion Design Jobs on Upwork
55:34
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 55:34
SFD 016: How to Get Freelance Fashion Design Jobs on Upwork

Kim Dippel is a fashion designer with 12 years of experience working for surf brands like Oneil and Quiksilver. After having a baby and moving away from a hub, she wanted to try freelancing. After not having any luck with her existing contacts, she turned to UpWork where she successfully landed a few ongoing clients that have kept her consistently busy. In the interview, Kim shares how to land your first few gigs, why honesty and transparency is essential to building relationships, and how to raise your rates with clients.

You will learn:
  • What you can do to land your first few jobs and build up your ratings
  • How to write a custom proposal and get the client’s attention
  • Red flags to look for when deciding whether to take a project or not
  • What to watch out for when bidding project based (flat fee) work
  • How to negotiate your rate without cutting yourself short
  • How to transition clients off UpWork
  • Strategies to track correspondence (phone, email) to make sure you get paid for your time
  • Why your website should be a cohesive representation of you as a brand
  • Why it’s ok to ask your client a lot of questions
Guest Info & Resources:

Looking for more resources?

SFD 015: How to Get Factories to Take You Seriously
01:12:52
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:12:52
SFD 015: How to Get Factories to Take You Seriously

Kathleen Fasanella is author of one of the fashion industry’s best resource books, The Entrepreneur's Guide to Sewn Product Manufacturing. Kathleen is a trained pattern maker with almost 4 decades of experience, and now owns a factory in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In this interview, she shares why speaking the right language can help factories and vendors take you seriously, how to make sure your production stays on track so you don’t get bumped out of line, and why designing isn’t always as glamorous as it can seem.

You will learn:
  • Less expensive and more effective alternatives to FIT or FIDM for technical design
  • Why you may be more technically inclined than you think (hint: if you can sew, you are)
  • The difference between a manufacturer and a sewing contractor
  • How speaking the right language will help suppliers take you seriously
  • Why you should only produce one style with a new factory
  • The realities of being a designer, and why it’s not as glamorous as you think
  • How to make sure your production stays on track and you don’y get bumped out of line for a bigger order
Guest Info & Resources: Looking for more resources?

SFD014: The (Sometimes Ugly) Truth About A Fashion Design Career
01:16:13
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:16:13
SFD014: The (Sometimes Ugly) Truth About A Fashion Design Career

Having a job as fashion designer glamorous and creative. Honest, it isn’t always that way. Most people don’t talk about this publicly, but Emily Keller is different. Which is why I knew I had to invite her on the show. In this episode, Emily shares her experience working as an employee the perception of working as a designer versus the reality, how to figure out if pursuing fashion as a second career is right for you, and the often limited creativity you’ll actually use in your job.

You will learn:
  • The difference between what you think a fashion designer does and what they really do
  • How creative you really get to be as a designer
  • Pros and cons of working for big runway brands versus smaller lesser known brands
  • The perception of working in fashion versus the reality
  • Tips on pursuing fashion as a second career
  • How to understand what you’re really getting into when you go into fashion
  • Why fashion designers don’t dress well
Guest Info & Resources: Looking for more resources?

SFD013: The Step by Step Production Process for Fashion Design Entrepreneurs
54:13
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 54:13
SFD013: The Step by Step Production Process for Fashion Design Entrepreneurs

In this episode I’m chatting with Abbie Ellis, co-founder of Stitch Method - a Chicago fashion agency that helps you DEFINE your market, DEVELOP your product and DELIVER it to your customers. In the interview, she walks through a step by step overview of the production process, how to work backwards from costing and budgeting to design, and why a tech pack is essential for every product, no matter how simple or where you’re manufacturing.

You will learn:
      • How long it takes to go from idea to production (hint: it’s longer than you think!)
      • How much you should budget to get your design into production
      • How to know whether you should manufacture overseas or locally
      • A step by step walk through of the production process from start to finish
      • Why your factory is one of your most valuable resources
      • How to work backwards from costing and budgeting to design
      • The value of thinking bigger picture and creating long term goals
Guest Info & Resources: Production Checklist

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD012: How to build a group of raving fans before you have a product
01:14:02
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:14:02
SFD012: How to build a group of raving fans before you have a product

In this episode I’m chatting with Colleen Monroe, founder of Untucked Workwear - clothes designed for women who embrace a lifestyle filled with gumption and a whole lot of go. After a year and a half of hard, Colleen launched a successful Kickstarter to fund the first round of production of her three piece collection. In the interview, she talks about how to build an email list and an audience before you even have a product, why fit is one of the most important factors to your success, how to deal with the financial realities of launching a label, and the importance of engaging with your customer

You will learn:
  • How to build tons of raving fans for life before you even have a product
  • How to collaborate with non-fashion brands to grow your audience
  • Why it's better to take your time to make sure your product is done right
  • The financial challenges of launching a label and advice to overcome them
  • The non-glamorous parts of the fashion world
  • How to have a successful Kickstarter campaign
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD011: The Number One Thing to Include On Your Fashion Design Resume
56:08
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 56:08
SFD011: The Number One Thing to Include On Your Fashion Design Resume

In this episode I’m chatting with Sheena Schoolcraft, a fashion designer in NYC who’s worked with brands like OshKosh, Tommy Hilfiger and Dress Barn. During our conversation, Sheena shares how to present your online portfolio and why it should be different than your physical portfolio, why being easy to work with can be key to your success, what you can bring to an interview to impress the hiring manager, and the best strategies to make sure your resume stands out.

You will learn:
  • How to make your resume results driven - even if you don't have a lot of experience
  • The value of relationships and a positive attitude
  • Why happy hour and casual work engagements may be where you land your next gig
  • The one thing nobody brings to an interview but should
  • The importance of showing brands how you can benefit them
  • What employers really want in their employees
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD010: Strategies to Manufacture Your Fashion Brand Overseas
01:09:53
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:09:53
SFD010: Strategies to Manufacture Your Fashion Brand Overseas

In this episode I’m chatting with Shilpa, founder of Nayali, an activewear brand for women bra size "D-cup & Up". Shilpa spent over a decade working for huge brands like Conde Nast, Fubu, and Gap. She took all her experience, quit her job, and went to Bali to do a solo label. A year and a half later after some big mistakes and a lot of tears, she launched her brand, Nayali. This is her story, her lessons learned, and her advice to others starting a brand.

You will learn:
  • The importance of capturing your customer with a solution to their problem
  • How to tighten your assortment (and the dangers of offering too many skus)
  • The etiquette of working with factories in different countries
  • How to push your factories to get your product made the right way
  • Why it’s safe to stick with what you know at the beginning, and worry about growth later
  • The pros of getting really specific with your collection
  • The benefits of getting help from others and why you shouldn’t do this alone
  • How to convince a factory to take your order - even if it doesn’t meet their minimums
  • Why you have to speak up to not be taken advantage of
  • The parts of the process you should do locally, and what you can source overseas
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD009: How to Grow Sales & Maximize Profits for Your Fashion Brand
01:00:27
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:00:27
SFD009: How to Grow Sales & Maximize Profits for Your Fashion Brand

In this episode I’m chatting with Traceena & Lauren, founder of The Sales Concept, which helps designers maximize profits through merchandising and sales strategies. This is one of the most content packed episodes to date, and if you have - or want to start - a label, grab a pen and paper to take notes and listen carefully to everything these two experts have to say. Traceena and Lauren give step by step instructions of how to approach buyers at shops and trade shows, word for word scripts of what to say on phone calls or in emails, and the exact steps to follow from the time you find the shop to writing the order.

You will learn:
  • What merchandising is and why it’s crucial to your success
  • The simple “backwards” strategy of pricing your products
  • The number one merchandising mistake designers make
  • How to approach buyers in person, in email and by phone (and which is best)
  • The etiquette for following up with buyers (how much is too much!?)
  • The easiest way to build your prospect list
  • Why your prospect list is your secret weapon (and how big it should be)
  • How to know if a buyer is serious or not
  • The simple trick for approaching buyers at trade shows
  • Why custom line sheets are key to getting the order
  • How to follow up with buyers without sounding sales
  • The value of repping your line yourself
  • Why you have to get feedback during every buyer meeting
  • The number one question you have to ask during your first interaction with a buyer
Guest Info & Resources:

Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD008: How to Have A Successful Career as A Textile Designer
49:50
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 49:50
SFD008: How to Have A Successful Career as A Textile Designer

In this episode I’m chatting with Michelle Fifis, founder of Pattern Observer and creator of the Textile Design Lab, a blog and community that helps creatives grow their textile design business. Michelle’s done textile work for Columbia Sportswear, Lucy Activewear, Jantzen Swimwear, Perry Ellis and had been featured in Stylesight.com, Elle Decor, and Nordstrom. In the interview, she shares how she got started and worked her way up in the industry, her strategy for leaving her full time job to start freelancing, and how she grew her blog into a successful online business. Michelle and I also talked about how to choose and start working with an agency or print house, how to stay motivated when you feel deflated, and not only how to price your work, but how to gracefully raise your prices.

You will learn:
  • The role a textile designer plays in the fashion world
  • The pros and cons of working with an agent or print house
  • How to rediscover your creativity when you feel stuck
  • The importance of having patience with your career growth
  • How to stay up to date on trends if you don't have access to expensive services like WGSN
  • The importance of having a community and not working in a vacuum
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD007: Using Your Network to get more Freelance Fashion Work
42:39
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 42:39
SFD007: Using Your Network to get more Freelance Fashion Work

Gia's a fashion freelancer who’s worked with huge names like Northface and Columbia Sportswear as well as small startup brands. Her eye for technical design and product development plus her friendly personality and hard working attitude is why most of her freelance gigs have luckily fallen right into her lap. In this interview, Gia and I chat about why your network is the best resource for new work, why it’s ok to charge premium prices, and creative ways to break into the industry without going to fashion school and starting with no experience.

You will learn:
  • The importance of going above and beyond in all the work you do
  • Why it’s ok not to ask a lot of questions and not know everything
  • How to get started in the industry without any experience
  • The pros and cons of charging hourly vs by project and when to choose what
  • Why the people you already know are the best resource for future opportunities
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD006: Job Hunting & Resume Advice for Fashion Industry Professionals
45:23
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 45:23
SFD006: Job Hunting & Resume Advice for Fashion Industry Professionals

In this episode I’m chatting with Chris Kidd, founder of Style Careers, the largest fashion only job listing site. With inside access to fashion industry employers and exposure to job seekers at their career fairs, Chris has learned what works - and what doesn't - in the job hunting process. We discussed the importance of presenting yourself as a modern candidate, what sectors of the industry are booming, and the most important information to include on your resume.

You will learn:
  • What the first inch of your resume must include to catch the employer's attention
  • What parts of the industry are dying, and what parts are booming
  • Guidance for young job seekers and advice for breaking into the industry
  • Advice for older job seekers to stay up to date and relevant
  • The importance of taking risks
  • How fashion is competing with other "must have" items and why designers need to be aware of this
  • Why the fashion industry is in a rut and what designers need to do to break out of it
Guest Info & Resources: Enjoy the show? You can help us out by: Looking for more resources?

SFD 005: How to Make a Career as a Fashion Illustrator with Danielle Meder
01:23:39
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:23:39
SFD 005: How to Make a Career as a Fashion Illustrator with Danielle Meder

In this episode I’m chatting with Danielle Meder who’s had a 10 year career as a professional fashion illustrator. She’s done live runway sketching at fashion weeks worldwide has a book called Draw Fashion now. Danielle shares how she broke past her fears of approaching people at events, how improving her appearance increased her success, and how she estimates and prices her freelance work to make sure she doesn’t leave any money on the table.

YOU WILL LEARN:

  • Breaking out of your shell and getting past fears of approaching people you want to work with
  • How your appearance affects your success
  • The “sex and cash theory” for jobs and why you need a balance
  • How to estimate project fees and knowing when to pad your price
  • Playing the pricing game with clients to make sure you’re not leaving money on the table
  • What Danielle’s up to next now that she’s done knocking on fashion’s door

GUEST INFO AND RESOURCES:

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 004: Freelancing Strategies for Fashion Designers with Marissa Borelli
01:06:38
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 01:06:38
SFD 004: Freelancing Strategies for Fashion Designers with Marissa Borelli

Marissa ditched her volleyball career during her junior year at UCLA to enroll in Parsons - without the support of her parents. She turned her love for sports and fashion into a successful career as an activewear designer which she's been doing for over 10 years, working with brands like Lululemon and Athleta. She also had her own line of scarves with distribution to over 60 retail outlets internationally, and she now freelances full time from the comfort of her home while being a twin mom to two boys. Marissa shares exactly how she pitches new clients, prices her projects to make a fair wage, and successfully does that scary networking thing to get more work.

YOU WILL LEARN:

How to use your industry contacts to your advantage

What to do to make yourself easy to work with and get more jobs

How to get inside the customer’s head to make sure your designs are on target

How to price yourself (and estimate projects) as a freelancer to make sure you get paid a fair wage

How to use email to keep in touch with your clients and make sure they think of you first for projects

Approaching companies at trade shows and other networking events without being "salesy"

Why researching the brands you want to work with is key landing the job

GUEST INFO & RESOURCES

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://bit.ly/SFD-review – it really helps! GET THE STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO BEING A SUCCESSFUL FREELANCER http://sfdnetwork.com/download4/

SFD 003: How to Ask for (and Get) a Promotion in Fashion with Brian McIntyre
38:11
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 38:11
SFD 003: How to Ask for (and Get) a Promotion in Fashion with Brian McIntyre

Brian didn't even discover that he had an interest in fashion until high school, and then he dove head first in. Four years later armed with a degree, he avoided design jobs due to his lack of proficiency in Adobe Illustrator. He finally got an opportunity he couldn't pass up, so "lied" about his AI skills in the interview and landed the job. He "faked it till he made it" and frantically got up to speed in the software. Since then, he's used his skills, drive and determination to advance his fashion career and get promoted within his first year as a designer.

YOU WILL LEARN

  • How curiosity can drive you to success
  • Why you have to ask for what you want (or else you probably won't get it)
  • Why it's ok to not keep up with everything that's going on in the industry
  • How to approach your boss (or your boss' boss) to get the promotion you want
  • Why defending your designs and perspective is crucial
  • What it's like working for small vs. large brands

ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps!

LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 002: Using Email to Successfully Pitch Freelance Clients with Melissa Mendez
58:51
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 58:51
SFD 002: Using Email to Successfully Pitch Freelance Clients with Melissa Mendez

After Melissa experienced what she thought was a heart attack while working in the corporate fashion world for over 10 years, she knew she needed to make a big life change. For over two years, she's been working as a freelancer and running her own design agency. She uses her industry network and cold pitching in email to get new clients (including a $15,000 contract from one email!) and in this episode, Melissa shares it all.

YOU WILL LEARN

How to transition from corporate to freelance fashion design work How to use free resources to educate yourself and build your own business Strategies to get new clients using your current network Using email to pitch and land clients The 4 podcasts Melissa listens to that helped grow her business What you need to do before cold emailing any company or person to offer your services CLICK HERE FOR MELISSA'S PITCH TEMPLATE GUEST INFO & RESOURCES http://www.melissamendezdesignstudio.com/ http://www.womencraftingsuccess.com/ https://www.smartpassiveincome.com/podcasts/ http://www.internetbusinessmastery.com/ibmapodcast/ http://ask.garyvaynerchuk.com/ http://www.girlboss.com/podcast/ ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

SFD 001: How to Get Your First Job in the Fashion Industry with Bjorn Bengtsson
41:01
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 41:01
SFD 001: How to Get Your First Job in the Fashion Industry with Bjorn Bengtsson

If you want to break into the fashion industry, it seems logical that you’d need to go to fashion school. But what if that’s not for you? There are creative ways you can approach opportunities to get your foot in the door. Bjorn shares exactly how to get an interview, and what he’s looking for during that first meeting. These are things you can do on your own (without a fashion school degree) to secure your first opportunity.

YOU WILL LEARN:

The value of internships and building relationships What to include (and not include) in your portfolio Why Illustrator skills are mandatory – but what other skills you need to survive The skills learned in school vs what’s required in the real world How to better prepare yourself for a job while you’re in school How to create opportunities if you don’t have a fashion school degree Why a curious mind will take you far How to get in touch with Bjorn for guidance (thank you for this generous offer Bjorn!) GUEST INFO & RESOURCES https://www.linkedin.com/in/bjornbengtsson/ https://www.businessoffashion.com/ https://www.untuckit.com/ ENJOY THE SHOW? YOU CAN HELP US OUT BY: Rating and subscribing on iTunes: http://sfdnetwork.com/review – it really helps! LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES? Visit http://sfdnetwork.com/free/ for free fashion design templates, tutorials and more from Successful Fashion Designer

How to Get Funding and Launch A Successful Fashion Brand
42:46
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 42:46
How to Get Funding and Launch A Successful Fashion Brand

Trying to make it as a new fashion brand is insanely cutthroat. The competition is fierce and there are hundreds of thousands of designers fighting to be the next big thing. Luckily, there are some simple things you can do to make sure you're miles ahead of the competition. This is part 2 of a two-part interview with Rochelle Behrens who owns The-Shirt.com, a succesful startup fashion label. She shares her best advice and some of the strategies she used to get her brand off the ground...and fast. You will learn: * Why you may not want to get VC funding to launch your fashion label, but other places where you can easily get money * The single most important thing you must do before going into production so you don’t fail before you’ve even started * How to figure out how much product you should buy so you’re not stuck with tons of inventory you can’t sell * The simplest way to to get loads of amazing press coverage, even if you don’t have any connections * The number one thing you’re not doing that will easily get you swarms of paying customers and loyal fans who will tell the world about you * How to figure out if you should manufacture locally or offshore, even if you have no idea where to start * The easiest way to quickly get noticed as a new fashion label and stand out amongst the competition You can listen to part 1 here: https://soundcloud.com/sew-heidi/rochelle-behrens-the-shirt-interview

Why Solving A Problem Is Essential to Building A Successful Brand
45:45
2017-10-24 15:51:52 UTC 45:45
Why Solving A Problem Is Essential to Building A Successful Brand

Rochelle Behrens launched her label, The Shirt, almost seven years ago after she saw a gap(e) in the market for properly fitting and fashionable button down shirts. The problem she wanted to solve? It's called "the gape", and some of us know it all too well. After years of working in politics in Washington, DC, Rochelle became frustrated and felt unprofessional in the ill-fitting shirts available in the retail market. So, she ditched her career in politics to pursue a more fashionable one of her own. Not only did she launch a succesful label, she was able to patent the technology. And if you know anything about patents and copyrighting fashion, you know this is no easy task. I'm absolutely thrilled and honored introduce you to her. In part one of this two part interview, she generously shares her insights on breaking into this competitive industry, the challenges of selling online, and the keys to her success. In a competitive and brutal industry like fashion, you know that designers can be very tight lipped about their ways. In this candid interview, Rochelle tells all with specific tactics, strategies and actions she took (and that you can too!) to get her company off the ground and build it up to the successful brand that it is today. You will learn: - Steps you can take to transition from a career that has nothing to do with fashion to starting your brand - How one introduction can be all you need to get started - Why being inquisitive is the best way to learn - Strategies to sell bigger and what you can do to take your sales to the next level - Why differentiating yourself in the market is the key to success - How getting out of your comfort zone can be best way to make connections - Why it’s easier to succeed if you define a super specific niche for your brand - How to strategically navigate the “secretive” fashion industry and actually get answers to all your questions Music by buukwerm (Creative Commons) / Don't Stop