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How to be a...Head of design at a menswear brand

Suzi Jacobs, Managing director, Fashion Appointments

Ideally, at the start of your career, you would begin by obtaining a fashion design qualification from one of the reputable universities, like London College of Fashion or Nottingham Trent University,

while ensuring your portfolio is up to date - this should always be a work in progress.

Look to train at leading businesses such as Ted Baker, Ben Sherman and French Connection, or look for a retailer that sells menswear and has its own design studio, like Burton, Topman,

Marks & Spencer and Tesco. Menswear suppliers are also valuable training grounds as they have an understanding of what sells on the high street.

Once you get to head of design, it’s very much a hands-on role where people will be looking to you for inspiration. Employers will be looking for evidence that you’ve had at least two or three designers reporting into you before.

You need a good eye for commercial design, drawing, pattern interpretation and garment construction. Fashion is always evolving so thinking outside of the box is a must.

Salaries for head of design range from £45,000 to more than £100,000 depending on the company.

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