The Fashion ‘Killdustry’?
Every day I wake up in the morning to go into the office supposedly in order to sit in front of a computer and create. Why supposedly? Because, unfortunately, that is not what I do all day. Unrealistic illusions of high-society, magnificent lifestyle and grandiose sketches and ball gowns all day long are blinding people’s expectations, especially students of the art, who want to work in the fashion industry, out of passion, love or pure interest.
This article started from a discussion I had with fellow friends and designers who work in the industry and through the conversation, I found that we all had lived the same type of experiences at one moment or another in the industry which led me to write this entry, not to scare anyone, but rather to portray an accurate image of our business. The reality of this particular industry is completely different than any other. Immense pressure to deliver successful and critically acclaimed collections, on-time production, meeting unworkable deadlines and everything that is in between is the name of the game. And for many, regrettably, after one strike only, you are out.
Either you get fired or you go into miserable, sometimes depressive, moods and burn-outs from the amount of stress and crazy workload that usually is more than one can handle. You either adjusts to it, be willing and prepared to work unpaid overtime hours and never get full (or any) credit for your hard work or you leave the field as soon as possible. Some days are easy, and others (most of them) are utterly insane. That is the reality of the fashion industry for you. No one is really prepared for it until they set foot into the industry and live it on a daily basis. And it is not all roses and petals.
I won’t lie, even for me, after a worthy amount of respectable experience in the field, some days are harder than others when comes the time to hit on the snooze button. But I stay because I am truly passionate about it. And when your passion over trumps anything else in life, you will make sure to succeed no matter what the senseless circumstances are. It’s a very harsh domain, and it will eat you alive and spit you out with no regrets nor shame or guilt. If you’re not ready or capable to handle all of it, you really are in the wrong business. Is it a killer industry? In many aspects, it is. But in many other ways, it is truly a rewarding and amazingly challenging field. Ultimately, you need to choose which side you want to be on…