Meet a Fashion Designer
We caught up with Bernadette Payne, who has worked in the fashion industry for 20 years and has now started a personal styling business, That’s My Style. She has worked in various roles in the fashion industry including sourcing and researching styles, costing, fitting and manufacturing.
What courses did you study to become a Fashion Designer? And tell us a bit about your current role?
Straight after finishing school, I studied Fashion Design at East Sydney TAFE. I went on to work for almost 20 years in fashion Buying, Designing, Manufacturing, and Management. Currently I am a freelance Stylist. I work with men and women to achieve confidence in their clothing choices – through wardrobe edits, personal shopping sessions, workshops and personal branding consultations.
What does a Fashion Designer do on a day-to day basis?
What don’t they do? You can be packing your bags to go on an overseas buying trip or to China to source new fabrics and negotiate prices. You can be working with a graphic artist to develop a new season print, sketching new design ideas, reading trend reports or meeting with a patternmaker to fitting new styles on a model. Some days can be just filled with problem solving and business admin. No day is the same. You have to be able to constantly juggle and think on your feet quickly.
What do you think are the skills a designer should have?
Creative, driven, problem solver, decisive, hard-working, passionate, think big picture, know your target market, work well in a team environment.
What are the three things you absolutely love about your job?
- Being creative, working with like-minded people
- Seeing the final design being worn by women on the street and knowing how much blood, sweat and tears went into that one garment. It’s rewarding when you see the end product.
What advice would you give students aspiring to work in the designing industry?
When I left my fashion design course, I had a great foundation of technical knowledge, but getting into the work force was the biggest learning of all. I had no idea what jobs were actually even out there.
Don’t be disheartened. Don’t give up. Keep focused on your goals. Work hard. All the learning along the way is invaluable. Get a job that you know will teach you the skills you need to then get to your dream job. Don’t expect to land the perfect job straight after studying. There are so many opportunities and difference aspects of fashion design. Think about the role you want to play.
What is next on your career horizon?
After having three children, I made the decision to change my career path. I left the fashion industry and decided to utilize my skills and knowledge as a personal stylist. As the founder of That’s My Style, I am helping everyday men and women find confidence, self-worth and happiness through their wardrobe. Instead of designing and manufacturing the clothing – I now actually work with the person wearing the clothing. I feel like I jumped the fence…..Clothing has no feelings, but people do.
Thank You, Bernadette for sharing your story with training.com.au