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Fashion Design

So, you aspire to start your own brand story! Wonderful. We congratulate you on your decision. Nothing matches the pride in shining across the fashion horizon with a brand known by your name. Imagine the host calling out your brand name on the ramp of an international fashion event. Enthralling, isn’t it?

Many fashion designers, alumni of the leading fashion designing colleges in Pune, Mumbai, etc., work with reputed fashion houses initially. But only some build the entrepreneurial spirit and confidence to start a fashion brand or clothing line. Those who don’t, aren’t any less talented. But while a few are enticed by the idea of a brand and the glamour and identity that follows it, some prefer working behind the scenes.

If you are among the former and have discovered the fashionpreneur within you, you must be wondering how to start a fashion brand. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you.

Fashion Entrepreneurship: Key Steps to Building a Successful Brand

It is incredible to start your fashion brand. But it is as challenging as starting any other business. Hence, it requires you to go plan your venture carefully and meticulously and work out the plan to make your entrepreneurial venture successful.

Research and Analyse the Market

Foremost! For you, your idea is the best in the market. Theoretically, it indeed could be one. But is it practically viable in the real world? Are your design concepts and outfit types in demand in the market? Are they vogue only in the present? Will the demand for them remain the same, grow or dry out in the future?

Of course, enlisting every question isn’t possible. But the above are some fundamental questions you must ask yourself before you begin your venture. There’s no point trying to sell something which wouldn’t remain in demand.

Accordingly, the first step is to research and analyse the market and its demand extensively. Step into the market. Speak with people. Conduct surveys. Know what’s required at the moment. Decode the market’s future to know what the current market will morph into in the future. Spend time, thought and effort in this exercise.

Don’t confine your efforts to online research and surveys. Your unique idea requires an exclusive survey to help you find answers to questions specific to your venture.

Develop a Proper Business Plan

This is another significant step in your endeavour to start a fashion brand. Your business plan helps you map your way to near and distant milestones. In other words, it guides you in accomplishing your goals over the next few months or years. Accordingly, it is prudent to invest time, thought and effort in creating a realistic business plan that includes a rational outreach and sales target.

However, ensure your business plan is flexible and allows you to adapt to a particular situation or sudden shifts in the market environment. Fashion is a trend-driven industry. Hence, you should have room to accommodate those trends and revamp your strategy to stay aligned with the market’s orientation.

Identify Your Prospective Buyers

It is identifying the people you would sell your creations to and understanding their needs. It will help you align your designs to their needs. Remember, every prospect segment and their needs are different. For instance, designs that work well with middle-aged people might not necessarily resonate with youngsters in their teens or 20s. While you would already know this as a fashion designer, you will have to make conscious efforts to learn what your prospects would like to wear.

Start Designing Your Outfits

Now that you know whom to target and the market’s demand size, you can bring your concepts to life. It means you can start designing your outfits. However, as mentioned earlier, fashion is a highly dynamic business. New trends quickly dethrone old ones, making them redundant. Hence, you should be quick enough to design your outfits and take them to a manufacturer capable of maintaining the required production pace.

Search for a Manufacturer

This one can take some time. It might also require you to travel extensively. Searching online and making decisions through online searches won’t help. While searching for a manufacturer, you should pay a site visit and factor in aspects like the manufacturer’s reputation, adherence to SLAs, manufacturing processes, capabilities and capacity, and the willingness to help to sprout fashion startups like you.

Factors like the distance between your market and the manufacturer’s location should also be considered as it will directly affect the transportation costs and overall production expenses. Of course, balancing all these aspects could prove challenging. But no one ever said starting and running a fashion business would be easy!

Start Marketing Your Business

Fashion marketing goes hand-in-hand with brand building. Hire traditional and digital marketing agencies or marketers, in general, who can help you leverage the power of 360-degree marketing. Ensure your fashion marketing partners tap all the possible and relevant channels to help you optimise your reach. It is worth noting that marketing doesn’t yield results at the drop of a hat. It takes time. So, you must ensure you have the time required between designing, manufacturing, marketing and selling before you forecast the next fashion wave to hit the market.

As a side note, while in business, delivering something on time matters – neither earlier nor later. Fashion isn’t an exception, unless you are a trendsetter, which you wouldn’t transform into, no sooner than you become an entrepreneur.

Work on the Branding Aspects

Once assured about the manufacturer’s delivery dates, start working on brand building aspects like preparing your brand communication, brand name, logo, colours, tagline, etc. Fashion is part of the show business. The more visible and attractive you are, the healthier it is for your reputation and sales.

Monitor Your Sales and Plan for the Next Lot

Start monitoring your sales once you hit the market. Prepare for everything, from success to failure, as it takes time for any brand to gain momentum. Continue monitoring the daily sales figures and keep innovating strategies to help you accomplish your primary goals and ensure that your initial sales at least cover your manufacturing costs and team remuneration, if not profits.


Emerging as fashion brand from a fashion startup will take time. Starting, surviving and succeeding as an entrepreneur isn’t child’s play. While taking time, it also requires considerable effort, persistence, patience and abundant people management skills to maintain cordial business relations, balance expenses and profits, and thrive despite numerous market challenges and dynamicity.

Hone the entrepreneur within you with NIFD Pune Kothrud, one of the fashion design institute in Pune . While enhancing their talent, we help students develop entrepreneurial skills and approach through our updated course curriculum, internship and industry exposure across various national and global events. Many of our students have taken up fashion entrepreneurship and made their mark in the fashion world. You can also start online fashion design business

Call us at +91 9205290939 " to connect with our support team. To learn more about our B.des fashion design courses and entrepreneurial approach. You would also like blog: Roles of Fashion Designer

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