Have a keen sense of fashion and design? Think your sales and marketing skills are also above-average? Himani Tyagi unveils Fashion Merchandising, a career that may be just right for you
Fashion merchandising is a work domain that, in one line, marries fashion with commerce. A fashion merchandiser doesn’t just focus on clothes and their designs, but also understands marketing techniques and strategies. His involvement with his work begins right at the development stage and continues till the distribution of the final product. The Indian fashion industry is commanding more attention globally with every passing day, and considering its staggering growth, fashion merchandisers now play a pivotal role in understanding buyers’ needs and buying trends.
Courses in fashion merchandising are being offered as four-year degree programmes, two-year degree courses, diplomas, advanced study programmes and certificate courses. The courses deal with different processes involved in production and merchandising. Students having passed 10+2 examinations, irrespective of their stream, are eligible to pursue undergraduate courses. For a post-graduate programme, one needs to have completed graduation.
After studying fashion merchandising, one can find jobs as fashion coordinators, production executives, assistant merchandisers and quality controllers. Fashion merchandising is a highly competitive field with several options to choose from. One can focus on manufacturing, buying or selling fashion merchandise, depending on interest. One can start working with a fashion brand, whether with domestic or foreign lifestyle companies. Merchandisers can look for positions in export houses and all kinds of retail stores. With time, merchandisers can even set up their own export house or small-scale business.
Institutes offering the course
Footwear Design & Development Institute, Noida; Vogue Institute of Fashion Technology, Bangalore; National Institute of Fashion & Textile Technology, New Delhi; National Institute of Fashion Technology, New Delhi; Pearl Academy, New Delhi; Mohan Lal Sukhadia University, Udaipur; Society of Fashion and Technology (SOFT), Mumbai; International Institute of Retail Management (IIRM), Delhi; School of Art and Fashion Technology (SAFT), Dehradun; Wigan & Leigh College, New Delhi; Foreign Trade Development Centre, New Delhi; National Institute of Fashion Design, Chandigarh and Academy of Fashion and Textile Technology (AFTT), Chennai.
For beginners, two lakhs per annum and above. Salaries depend on the nature and size of the organisation one works with, and with time and experience, the remuneration naturally gets better.
Yamini Bharadwaj, Merchandising Manager with Signatureinstyle, says, “A fashion merchandiser has to think different. The Indian market is seeing a lot of variation, but one has to be careful not to upset certain traditional unwritten rules. You must know how much to experiment and when to stop. If you can identify the taste of your customers and give them exactly what they want, you will do well in this industry.”