8 Best Ways to Learn Fashion Design

It begins with a spark. An idea. 

Fashion designers build the social trends of everyday wear to extreme fashion. Like most forms of design, the social influence of these trends ripples, and is a part of each and every individual’s style and a consumer’s day to day life.

That being said, fashion design is an art form, and takes time to learn, and develop your skills with. If you have the creativity and inspiration necessary for design, it’s just a matter of studying to understand design concepts, and the perseverance to practice these concepts successfully to build your portfolio (and your resume with it). We all start off somewhere, it’s about taking small steps forward.

Even for more advanced designers, reviewing the basics can be extremely beneficial- as no designer is above the building blocks of design.

The learning process

Everyone learns differently which is why we’ll be presenting you with 8 of the best ways to pick up this art form. You may not use every method but be prepared to try and do many of these on your journey to developing your new skills. First, let’s explain why these methods are so important. There are 3 main aspects of the learning process that each of these 8 best methods contribute to:

Researching the basics

finding the basics, discovering the skills needed, and understanding the history of design. Having ideas is great but if you don’t know how to apply these ideas, you’ll fall short. Doing the necessary leg work to start building your knowledge on fashion design will help you become a well-rounded designer with the ability to contribute to your field successfully. 

Study and consolidate your learning material

Understanding the why and how of the concepts you are learning. It’s not enough to memorize terms or gather notes, you need to be actively reviewing these processes and building on this knowledge. Don’t be afraid to reach out to others in the field for guidance and learning opportunities. 

Practice to hone your skills

Hone your skills, experiment, and find your focus. As crucial as it is to become a knowledge bank of fashion design, your ability to apply these concepts and use them to better develop your ideas, and overall craft is pertinent to your success. We’ve all heard of the idiom, “practice makes perfect” and it rings true for learning how to be a fashion designer, including learning to sew and manipulate fabrics, increasing your drawing abilities, building the social skills needed to express your ideas and build business relationships, as well as learning to perceive and predict fashion trends. 

8 best ways to learn fashion design

  • Learn the basics. Pick up a book (or e-book). Think about it, what do you need to know to be a great fashion designer? You should know the basics of fashion drawing, look into sewing books for learning how to work with fabrics and stitching, as well as the history of fashion design and it’s trends. 


  • Online Research. Convenient, and accessible anywhere. Use good sense when scouring the internet for fashion design information but overall, there is a smorgasbord of helpful articles available online that cover a range of topics, and techniques helpful for students at any level. Online research is perfect for those quick topics that you need to keep handy, like knowing the principles of design and how to manipulate them.
  • Online Instructional and Resource Videos. Some of us are more visual learners than others. It’s not enough to know something, you need to see it. You may know the proper way to apply a stitch on a particular fabric but seeing it in practice allows you to understand how a particular fabric moves and reacts to certain techniques. You can also find amazing resources that cover in depth how to break into the fashion industry and its many roles.


  • Real-world instruction. Online videos and articles, as well as books are great sources of information but having the ability to ask someone in real time why or how something is done helps the learning process greatly. Simply having someone more experienced being able to guide you, and correct you while you’re doing something can give you the confidence you need when building your understanding. You can seek out classes to attend physically or live video tutorials for a more one on one feel. 
  • Practice. Applying the knowledge you have gained is vital in improving your own skills and abilities. Spend time every day practicing the techniques and skills you have learned and don’t be afraid to experiment with new ideas based off these concepts. It’s only by doing that will you have the opportunity to advance your skills and build your portfolio.
  • Socialize and participate in the community. Don’t be afraid to get out and meet people. Meet other aspiring designers, locally established designers, and people working in the industry in general. It’s not only important for getting your name out there, but you want to practice being able to verbalize what exactly you do, your style, and working processes. Beyond this, staying current to trends and knowing what other people are doing in your field is imperative. 


  • Seek opportunities to build your experience. Connected to socializing and participating in the fashion design community, you want to seek opportunities in the fashion design field to start learning and growing accustomed to the working side of applying the skills and techniques you’ve learned. Working in a learning environment where you can go at your own pace, in your own way, is vastly different from a professional environment where you will experience tighter deadlines, be held to the processes of others, and having to learn to work together with others as a team. Building this experience not only supports the growth of your resume and portfolio, but gives you a chance to receive “real-world” practice.


  • Focus your efforts. Once you get to a point where you are comfortable with some of the basics of fashion design, begin focusing your efforts. Make fashion design a part of your every day from spending an hour reading up on the current trends in the morning, planning events to attend in your calendar, community opportunities to showcase your ideas, to portfolio building- you should be combining your learning efforts in order to develop the most well-rounded set of skills and experiences. 


Fashion design is an exciting career pathway

Fashion design is an exciting field, with many opportunities and different capacities and roles in which you can contribute to the ever-changing trends and social impacts of the fashion industry. Getting into a field such as fashion design can be tedious, but with practice and perseverance, it’s a rewarding path with a lot of emotional, social, and financial rewards. Will you be the next big name in fashion? Follow our 8 best ways to learn fashion design, and find out.

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