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Fashion design assistant

Alternative titles for this job include

Fashion design assistants help designers to create new materials, styles, colours and patterns for fashion brands and labels.

Average salary (a year)

£14,000 Starter


£23,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

40 to 42 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends flexibly

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Fashion design assistant

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role


You could do a foundation degree or higher national diploma in fashion design or fashion and textiles.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma

More Information


You could take a college course to learn skills in pattern cutting, computer-aided cutting techniques and design software. Courses include:

  • Level 2 Diploma In Skills for the Fashion Industries
  • Level 3 Diploma in Fashion, Clothing and Textile Design
  • Level 3 Extended Diploma in Fashion Design and Production
  • T Level in Craft and Design

A course that teaches both design and technical skills will give you the practical knowledge that employers look for.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths for a T Level

More Information


You could do a fashion studio assistant or garment maker advanced apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More Information


You can start as a general assistant with a fashion company or retailer and work your way up, taking training and getting qualifications along the way.


There is strong competition for jobs in the fashion industry, so any contacts and experience you can get will help when looking for work. You could get this through internships, work placements or volunteering.

The British Fashion Industry supports initiatives like the National Saturday Club for young people from 13 to 16 looking to get an insight into fashion careers.

More Information

Career tips

You'll need to put together a portfolio of your work to take to course and job interviews. This should include mood boards, designs, drawings and a couple of examples of finished items of clothing you have made.

Further information

You can find more details about working in fashion from:

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • design skills and knowledge
  • the ability to come up with new ways of doing things
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • ambition and a desire to succeed
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

You could:

  • create prototypes and tailor garments
  • produce technical sketches
  • explain creative ideas to designers
  • source fabrics and trimmings
  • create mood, shape and trend boards
  • get approval for designs from customers
  • work closely with factories and suppliers
  • meet with customers and fabric agents
  • inspect products during the design process

Working environment

You could work in a creative studio or in a workshop.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience you could become a fashion designer, then senior designer or design director. As a design director you could create your own range and manage a design team.

You could also move into freelance design, working on individual projects, or self-employment, creating your own collections.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Fashion design assistant right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Fashion Design Level 2 Diploma

  • Provider: NEW CITY COLLEGE
  • Start date: 10 September 2024
  • Location: HACKNEY

Level 3 Fashion Design

  • Start date: 09 September 2024
  • Location: Bradford

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