How to Become a Fashion Consultant

Fashion consultants help people to develop a wardrobe that promotes their public image. They are able to assess body type, career goals and personality to enhance a client's clothing and accessory choices. They are often self-employed stylists who have extensive experience in the fashion and retail industry. Personal image consultants must be social, fashion-conscious problem-solvers. You should have a love for sharing and promoting fashion and increasing self-confidence through your work. Find out how to become a fashion consultant.


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    Earn your high school diploma. This is the lowest level of education that is essential to develop a career in fashion consulting. You can substitute a General Education Development (GED) certificate.
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    Consider earning a bachelor's or associate's degree in fashion. Receiving further training will open up job possibilities and make it easier to break into the industry.
    • A bachelor's degree in fashion marketing, merchandising or design is an excellent choice for this type of work. These degrees are not available at all colleges, so you may have to relocate to find an applicable program.
    • An associate's degree in merchandising or fashion consulting is also a good choice. These programs usually take 2 years, and some can be completed while you work.
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    Get work experience in retail or fashion. Apply for jobs as a personal shopper, retail manager at a well-known boutique or department store or assistant in a fashion environment. You should have 2 to 5 years of experience dealing with fashion and customers on a daily basis.
    • You can also choose to get experience by working as an assistant to an established image consultant. These are usually entry-level positions; however, it will allow you to receive on-the-job training on running a consulting business and working with clients.
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    Cultivate a personal image. Your personal style is particularly important in the fashion and image consulting field. When you appear in public, you should communicate your business prowess through your fashion choices.
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    Create a web presence. Start a blog, a twitter account and a Facebook account. Creating a website that posts the newest fashions and your contact information will allow people to find you and legitimize your business.
    • Develop a description of the services you offer. You may choose to work with formal events, day-to-day fashion or business images. Set your prices according to competitors and experience.
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    Start working as a fashion consultant part-time. It takes time to build up clientele. While you are still working in retail or fashion, start taking clients on after work hours to build your client base.
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    Volunteer your services for friends and family. If you have friends and family that are moving into a new career, planning a wedding or creating uniforms for their services, ask to get involved for free or at a reduced price. Post your success stories online or in a portfolio.
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    Consider a certification. Professional organizations offer training and certificates that can help to boost your resume. For example, the Association of Image Consultants International provides an exam-based certification option with continuing education credits.
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    Network in the professional community. Become part of a local business organization that allows you to meet people with disposable income that can use your services. These professionals may refer people to you after you build relationships.
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    Set up business partnerships. Get access to potential clients by working with salons, day spas, interior designers and fashion designers to trade business contacts. Advertise on websites and work out exclusive deals your client's services.
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    Develop a client base. Once you start to get referrals, you may consider working full-time. Try to offer products that allow clients to use your services on a regular basis, rather than a single time.


  • Take business courses. Enrolling in a program for small businesses or entrepreneurs will help you to set prices, create marketing, grow your business and handle your bookkeeping. If you do not have prior training on running your own business, this experience may determine whether you are able to be self-employed as an image consultant, or if it will remain part-time work.

Things You'll Need

  • High school diploma
  • Bachelor's/associate's degree in fashion
  • Fashion/retail work experience
  • Website
  • Blog
  • Social media accounts
  • Professional certification
  • Business partnerships
  • Portfolio
  • Business courses

Article Info

Categories: Fashion Styles