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Career and Education Opportunities for Fashion Designers in Elizabeth, New Jersey

Elizabeth, New Jersey provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for fashion designers. There are currently 600 jobs for fashion designers in New Jersey and this is projected to grow 17% to 700 jobs by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for fashion designers are expected to grow by about 0.8%. In general, fashion designers design clothing and accessories.

A person working as a fashion designer can expect to earn about $26 per hour or $55,660 per year on average in New Jersey and about $29 per hour or $61,160 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Compared with people working in the overall category of Art and Design, people working as fashion designers in New Jersey earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Art and Design nationally. Jobs in this field include: athletic shoe designer, costume director, and product developer.

There are 298 schools of higher education in the Elizabeth area, including seven within twenty-five miles of Elizabeth where you can get a degree to start your career as a fashion designer. Fashion designers usually hold an Associate's, or other 2-year degree, so you can expect to spend about two years studying to be a fashion designer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Fashion Designer

Fashion Designer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, fashion designers design clothing and accessories. They also create original garments or design garments that follow well established fashion trends.

Fashion designers examine sample garments on and off models; then modify designs to produce desired effects. They also furnish sample garments to agents and sales representatives, and manage showings of sample garments at sales meetings or fashion shows. Equally important, fashion designers have to sketch rough and detailed drawings of apparel or accessories, and write specifications such as color schemes and accessory requirements. They are often called upon to visit textile showrooms to keep up-to-date on the latest fabrics. They are expected to attend fashion shows and review garment magazines and manuals so as to gather data related to fashion trends and consumer preferences. Finally, fashion designers direct and schedule staff involved in drawing and cutting patterns and constructing samples or finished garments.

Every day, fashion designers are expected to be able to be creative and generate new ideas. They need to articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for fashion designers to collaborate with other designers to direct special products and designs. They are often called upon to decide on materials and production techniques to be used for products. They also adapt other designers' concepts for the mass market. They are sometimes expected to purchase new or used clothing and accessory items as needed to finish designs. Somewhat less frequently, fashion designers are also expected to test fabrics or oversee testing so that garment care labels can be created.

Fashion designers sometimes are asked to draw patterns for articles designed; then cut patterns, and cut material in line with patterns, using measuring instruments and scissors. They also have to be able to sew together sections of material to fashion mockups or samples of garments or articles, using sewing equipment And finally, they sometimes have to visit textile showrooms to keep up-to-date on the latest fabrics.

Like many other jobs, fashion designers must be thorough and dependable and believe in innovation and creative thought.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Elizabeth include:

  • Art Director. Formulate design concepts and presentation approaches, and direct workers engaged in art work, layout design, and copy writing for visual communications media, such as magazines, books, and packaging.
  • Craftsman. Create or reproduce hand-made objects for sale and exhibition using a variety of techniques, such as welding, weaving, and needlecraft.
  • Display Specialist. Plan and erect commercial displays.
  • Fine Artist. Create original artwork using any of a wide variety of mediums and techniques.
  • Graphic Designer. Design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos. May use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.
  • Industrial Designer. Develop and design manufactured products, such as cars, home appliances, and children's toys. Combine artistic talent with research on product use, marketing, and materials to create the most functional and appealing product design.
  • Interior Designer. Plan, design, and furnish interiors of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings. Formulate design which is practical, aesthetic, and conducive to intended purposes, such as raising productivity, selling merchandise, or improving life style. May specialize in a particular field, style, or phase of interior design.
  • Multi-Media Artist or Animator. Create special effects, animation, or other visual images using film, video, or other electronic tools and media for use in products or creations, such as computer games, movies, and commercials.
  • Set and Exhibit Designer. Design special exhibits and movie, television, and theater sets. May study scripts, confer with directors, and conduct research to determine appropriate architectural styles.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Fashion Designer Training

Montclair State University - Montclair, NJ

Montclair State University, 1 Normal Avenue - 855 Valley Road, Montclair, NJ 07043-1624. Montclair State University is a large university located in Montclair, New Jersey. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 17,475 students and an admission rate of 52%. Montclair State University has a bachelor's degree program in Fashion/Apparel Design which graduated twenty-seven students in 2008.

Fashion Institute of Technology - New York, NY

Fashion Institute of Technology, 227 W 27th St, New York, NY 10001-5992. Fashion Institute of Technology is a large school located in New York, New York. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,128 students and an admission rate of 42%. Fashion Institute of Technology has 2 areas of study related to Fashion Designer. They are:

  • Apparel and Textile Manufacture, associate's degree and bachelor's degree which graduated thirty-eight and sixty students respectively in 2008.
  • Fashion/Apparel Design, less than one year, associate's degree, and bachelor's degree which graduated thirteen, 379, and 195 students respectively in 2008.

Wood Tobe-Coburn School - New York, NY

Wood Tobe-Coburn School, 8 E 40th St, New York, NY 10016-0190. Wood Tobe-Coburn School is a small school located in New York, New York. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 557 students and an admission rate of 91%. Wood Tobe-Coburn School has an associate's degree program in Fashion/Apparel Design which graduated thirty-two students in 2008.

Pratt Institute-Main - Brooklyn, NY

Pratt Institute-Main, 200 Willoughby Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11205. Pratt Institute-Main is a small school located in Brooklyn, New York. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,925 students and an admission rate of 43%. Pratt Institute-Main has a bachelor's degree program in Fashion/Apparel Design which graduated thirty-three students in 2008.

Katharine Gibbs School-New York City - New York, NY

Katharine Gibbs School-New York City, 50 West 40 Street, New York, NY 10018. Katharine Gibbs School-New York City is a small school located in New York, New York. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 627 students. Katharine Gibbs School-New York City has an associate's degree program in Fashion/Apparel Design which graduated ninety students in 2008.

The New School - New York, NY

The New School, 66 W 12th Street, New York, NY 10011-8603. The New School is a medium sized school located in New York, New York. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,067 students and an admission rate of 51%. The New School has an associate's degree and a bachelor's degree program in Fashion/Apparel Design which graduated 162 and 116 students respectively in 2008.

The Art Institute of New York City - New York, NY

The Art Institute of New York City, 75 Varick St 16th Fl, New York, NY 10013. The Art Institute of New York City is a small school located in New York, New York. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 1,410 students and an admission rate of 43%. The Art Institute of New York City has an associate's degree program in Fashion/Apparel Design which graduated sixty-nine students in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Elizabeth, New Jersey

Elizabeth, New Jersey
Elizabeth, New Jersey photo by Cobber17

Elizabeth is situated in Union County, New Jersey. It has a population of over 124,755, which has grown by 3.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Elizabeth, 140, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Elizabeth are valued at $321,400 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, eight new homes were constructed in Elizabeth, up from six the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Elizabeth are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and other transportation, and support activities, and couriers. The average travel time to work is about 28 minutes. More than 12.1% of Elizabeth residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 4.2%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Elizabeth is 12.4%, which is greater than New Jersey's average of 9.3%.

The percentage of Elizabeth residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 65.5%, is more than both the national and state average. First Pentecostal Church, Christ Episcopal Church and Alliance International Fellowship Church are some of the churches located in Elizabeth. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the American Baptist Churches in the USA.

Elizabeth is home to the North Elizabeth Station and the Julian Station as well as Kellogg Park and Jackson Park. Visitors to Elizabeth can choose from Hampton Inn Newark-Airport, Centro America Express and Hilton Newark Airport for temporary stays in the area.