APPAREL | Educational

How to become an Apparel consultant: education, experience and skills

Published: December 19, 2022
Author: Fashion Value Chain

Dr. Roopak Vasishtha – Chief Executive Officer

Apparel Made Ups and Home Furnishing Sector Skill Council (AMHSSC)

Are you looking to update your wardrobe but unsure and confused about what clothes and accessories to choose? An Apparel consultant can help! These professionals provide valuable advice and inputs on fashion and clothing selections, thus helping you make the right choices as per your personal style and needs. In this article, we will explain what an Apparel consultant does, how to become one, and the key elements and career prospects of this exciting and dynamic career.

What does an Apparel consultant do?

An Apparel consultant is a professional who specializes in providing advice and guidance to individuals and businesses on matters related to clothing and fashion, best suited to their requirements and lifestyle.

They provide guidance to individuals and corporates on:

  • Personal branding 
  • Wardrobe management
  • Personal Styling
  • Personal Colour
  • Shopping
  • Latest trends 

Some Apparel consultants also work in retail outlets, offering advice to customers as they shop, while others may work in fashion design or styling studios, helping clients put together outfits for special occasions or photo shoots. In short, an Apparel consultant is an expert in the field of fashion and lifestyle who helps clients in making informed and correct decisions about their clothing and style. 

 Role of an Apparel Consultant:

 An apparel consultant is in demand for a variety of reasons.  For companies and brands dealing with clothing and fashion products, an apparel consultant can provide valuable insights and expertise on current and emerging trends. This can include, conducting market research and  identifying  emerging trends, analysing consumer behaviour to determine what styles  are likely to dominate the market and make recommendations pertaining to colour , style and fit. The companies can benefit by developing clothing lines that are in line with customer preferences and latest trends. An apparel consultant can also help companies to identify new opportunities and to develop strategies for success in the marketplace. 

Overall, an Apparel consultant can provide a range of benefits to both individuals and companies in the fashion industry. They can help clients to make informed decisions about clothing and accessories, and to stay on top of the latest trends in the fashion world.

How to become an Apparel Consultant

To become an Apparel consultant, one needs to have a strong understanding of fashion and clothing trends. This can be obtained through a combination of education and on the job experience in the fashion industry. One way to gain the necessary knowledge and skills is to pursue formal education in fashion or a related field which includes earning a degree in fashion design, fashion merchandising, or a related field from a recognised College or University. Many institutes also offer certificate programs or short term courses in fashion and apparel consulting that help in gaining additional training and expertise in the field. 

Apparel Made-ups and Home Furnishing Sector Skill Council (AMHSSC) was established under the aegis of Ministry of Skill Development & entrepreneurship to spearhead skilling initiatives across the nation. Since its inspection, the Council has successfully trained and certified 18 lac candidates till date in the domain of apparel, made-ups and home furnishing sector. 

In addition to education, the Council also helps candidates get placement or experience within the industry by means of internships or entry-level positions in fashion design, merchandising, or sales department. Working in these job roles can provide valuable hands-on experience and help candidates develop a deep understanding of the industry. 

Having acquired the necessary education and experience, one can start working as an apparel consultant. This may involve working for a consulting firm, starting your own consulting business, or working as a freelance consultant. You may also be able to work as an in-house consultant for a fashion retailer or clothing manufacturer.Becoming a successful apparel consultant requires a combination of education, experience, and expertise in the fashion industry. 

Personality traits for an apparel consultant

There are several personality traits that can be helpful for an apparel consultant to possess. These are as follows:

  • Creativity: An apparel consultant should have a creative and artistic eye, as well as the ability to think outside of the box, when it comes to fashion and clothing. This can help them develop unique and innovative ideas and make valuable recommendations to their clients.
  • Attention to detail: An apparel consultant should have an eye for detail, as well as the ability to carefully analyze and evaluate clothing and fashion trends. It is a useful skill in making accurate and informed recommendations to clients.
  • Communication skills: An apparel consultant should have strong communication skills, so that they can clearly and effectively communicate their ideas and recommendations to clients. This may include giving presentations, writing reports, and working with designers and manufacturers to develop new clothing lines. They should also possess exemplary listening skills.
  • Confidence: An apparel consultant should have confidence in their abilities and in the recommendations theymake to their clients. This can help them persuade clients to follow their advice and handle challenging situations or difficult clients.
  • Flexibility: An apparel consultant should be flexible and adaptable, as the fashion industry is constantly changing and evolving, they should be able to adapt to new trends and styles, and be willing to try new things in order to help their clients stay up- to- date..
  • Networking skills: An apparel consultant should have strong networking skills, as they will need to build relationships and connections in the fashion industry in order to stay informed about the latest trends and to develop new business opportunities.
  • Business savvy: An apparel consultant should have a good understanding of businesses, as they may be involved in developing marketing materials, managing budgets, and working with designers and manufacturers to create new clothing lines. This can help them make informed and strategic decisions for their clients.

Career Progression of an Apparel consultant

The career progression of an apparel consultant will depend on a number of factors, including their education, experience, and skills. However, some possible career paths for an apparel consultant include:

  • Entry-level positions: An apparel consultant may start their career at  an entry-level position, such as an assistant to a fashion designer or a sales associate in a clothing or lifestyle store. In these roles, they can gain experience and build their knowledge of the fashion industry, as well as develop their communication and presentation skills.
  • Freelance consultant: After gaining some experience, an apparel consultant may decide to become a freelance consultant, working with a variety of clients on a project-by-project basis. This can provide flexibility and autonomy, it will  also require the consultant to be responsible for marketing their services, managing their own finances, and building their own network of clients.
  • Senior consultant: As an apparel consultant gains experience and builds their reputation, they may be able to move into a senior consultant position. In this role, they work with high-profile clients, and are responsible for managing a team of consultants. They can also add value by offering inputs related to development of new clothing lines and marketing strategies for their clients.
  • Fashion industry executive: With extensive experience and a strong track record, an apparel consultant is able to move into a leadership position in the fashion industry. This could include working as a Creative director for a fashion brand, Vice president, product development for a clothing company or brand, or even starting their own fashion business.

The career progression of an apparel consultant will depend on their education, experience, and acquired skills. With hard work, dedication, and a passion for fashion, an apparel consultant can build a successful and fulfilling career in the industry.

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