THE NECESSARY "INVESTMENTS" IN FASHION INDUSTRY
At times, the fashion industry is perceived as a costly field of study, requiring significant financial investment. However, beyond finances, these are aspects one needs to equip themselves with in this field. If one can strike a balance in investing in necessary resources tailored to their needs at each stage, what they reap can be far greater.
QUALITY FASHION DOCUMENTATION
Currently, we can research and absorb knowledge and trends through the Internet, but fashion books remain a valuable and worthwhile source of information. This is because the knowledge in books is not only explained in concise and highly specialized language, but the references and case studies are also meticulously curated and not easily found online. Additionally, one can create membership accounts on reputable websites such as BOF, Vogue Runway, The Impression, WWD, Cosmopolitan, etc., to access more in-depth articles.
PERSONAL CREATIVE SPACE
For highly creative fields like fashion, a 'creative space' plays a crucial role in maintaining a constant source of inspiration. This space could be at home, within a company, or even a curated list of cafes and co-working spaces, depending on each individual's lifestyle.
For instance, fashion designers' creative space should focus on essential tools of the trade such as sewing machines, mannequins, pattern paper, measuring tapes, thread storage boxes, fabrics, and a collection of runway-related books and textiles.
GREY MATTER, FASHION KNOWLEDGE
Regardless of whether one starts with a background in fashion or not, continuous learning and honing of expertise are essential prerequisites to begin working. Investing in 'knowledge' doesn't necessarily mean enrolling in a formal fashion school right from the start. It simply requires a proactive attitude and dedicating time to acquire knowledge that aligns with one's career goals.
Moreover, investing in 'grey matter' within creativity is also an aspect that requires careful consideration and effort, aiming to make one's creations truly unique. Grey matter is the foundation of individuality in creativity.
FASHION PORTFOLIO/WEBSITE, PROFESSIONAL ARTISTRY
A fashion portfolio or a personal website serves as a testament to the creativity of every individual, especially in the field of fashion design. According to an interview on The Guardian in 2013 with professors and program leaders at Central Saint Martins, UAL, the majority of fashion and art portfolios play a pivotal role in the fashion industry application process. Unless the portfolio stands out exceptionally, they carefully scrutinize the personal statement (the personal statement is secondary to portfolio work). Therefore, investing time and effort into a platform, a foundation to showcase one's skills, by uploading artworks, projects, or writing samples related to the fashion industry, will undoubtedly enhance one's progress.
APPROPRIATE FINANCIAL RESOURCES
Why 'appropriate'? We all know that pursuing a fashion education requires a certain financial commitment. However, it's essential to consider which expenses are worth investing in or prioritizing. If substantial funds are allocated to one aspect, the remaining areas should be carefully balanced and rationalized.
Scenario 1: If unable to afford fashion tuition fees in New York or London, one can consider other places more suitable for their family's financial situation. Fashion capitals are not always the best choice for many individuals.
Scenario 2: If a significant amount has been spent on accessories and fabrics, one can optimize costs by focusing on image production.
PERSONALIZATION IN INVESTING IN FASHION
In the end, each individual will have different perspectives and priorities in the field of fashion. These 'investments' also depend on the timing and one's objectives at that moment. As long as we feel it's worthwhile and it boosts our confidence and happiness, it's valid. We don't need to force ourselves to follow others' investments if they don't genuinely align with our needs. Material or spiritual investments are personal choices, especially in the diverse realm of the fashion industry.