Fashion Designers Get Paid: Build Your Fashion Career On Your Own Terms

Sew Heidi

This is a show for burnt-out fashion designers (and TDs, PDs, patternmakers and beyond) who want more flexibility while still doing work they love. As a freelance fashion designer, you can build your fashion career on your own terms. Freelancing in fashion is the only way to get freedom in your day (instead of being tied to a desk). Whether you want to earn extra money on the side, fund your fashion brand, or replace your salary, the FDGP podcast will help you get there. Listen in for actionable tips and strategies to kickstart or grow your career as a freelance fashion designer, build your confidence, and create the life you want. Hosted by $100k+ fashion freelancer Sew Heidi, the show features interviews and strategy sessions with successful freelance fashion designers from around the world who've ditched toxic fashion jobs and taken control of their own destinies. This is the only place to get REAL insights from REAL freelancers who have built REAL careers on their own terms. (Formerly the Successful Fashion Freelancer podcast.) read less
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Episodes

214: How CLO3D "Saved" This Fashion Designer
Yesterday
214: How CLO3D "Saved" This Fashion Designer
Are unsustainable practices in the fashion industry leaving you fed up and ready to jump ship? You're not alone but leaving the industry isn't the only option!  A talented fashion designer, Jade Wei, felt the same way in her fashion career. Feeling stuck in traditional, wasteful practices, Jade embraced new technology, starting with Adobe Illustrator and eventually mastering CLO 3D. This journey reignited her passion, showing how stepping out of your comfort zone and adopting innovative tools can lead to more sustainable and exciting opportunities in the industry.This episode is a must-listen for anyone feeling stuck or resistant to the evolving technologies in fashion design. Jadeโ€™s story offers hope, practical advice, and a renewed sense of purpose that can energize your own fashion design journey.About Jade Wei:Jade is a freelance designer based in London, specializing in 3D pattern-making, garment and product development for brands with similar creative ethos. Born in Taiwan, she moved to the UK at 18 to pursue a career in fashion. With 17+ years of experience in the industry, she has worked for luxury brands including Alexander McQueen, Theory, and ClothSurgeon. She also designs for independent designers and launched her own brand, ATELIER WCMF. Recently, she has been merging the digital and physical fashion worlds using emerging technology to create advanced technical services for fashion brands.Connect with Jade:Visit their websiteEmail at: j.w@atelier-wcmf.comFollow on InstagramConnect on Linkedin ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
213: How This Freelancer Built a Fashion Merchandising Agency
May 13 2024
213: How This Freelancer Built a Fashion Merchandising Agency
When life gives you lemons you make lemonade...but what about when life gives you a job loss?  Or even a pandemic?Is it even possible to turn a job loss (especially during the pandemic) into a thriving startup in the fashion industry?  Yep!  My guest, Krystal Lewis, shares exactly how she turned her personal and professional challenges into launching her own fashion business. It's a raw look at the ups and downs of becoming your own boss in a tough industry.As a fashion designer, there's always going to be curveballs thrown your way.  Listen to this episode to learn key lessons for taking what life throws at you and creating a successful and thriving fashion business!About Krystal:Black Unicorn Merchandising is a boutique apparel design company specializing in custom design, ethical sourcing and low minimum manufacturing. We are a highly dynamic team of fashion connoisseurs, steadfastly committed to delivering top-tier garments that epitomize your brand's visionary essence. Our comprehensive approach spans the entire design process, from conceptualization and artistic sketching to intricate pattern making, meticulous prototyping, and seamless production. Whether you represent a startup brand in need of a lot of guidance or an esteemed label seeking to ease the workload, rest assured that our unwavering dedication and unrivaled passion will bring your apparel ideas to life.Connect with Krystal:Visit their websiteEmail at: contactus@blackunicornmerch.comFollow on InstagramConnect on LinkedinSubscribe on Youtube ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
211: The Best Freelance Sites for Fashion Designers
Apr 29 2024
211: The Best Freelance Sites for Fashion Designers
Don't waste your time on freelancing platforms that are known for cheap pay and demanding clients.  But how do you know which freelancing platforms to look out for?After surveying over 500 fashion designers who are students in my Freelance Accelerator program, I've compiled real data so you can feel confident. Even though many of these students have found success, you still have to be wary of bad job postings. I break down why this platform stands out despite any pitfalls, what to watch out for with cheap and demanding clients, and how to tailor your profile to attract serious fashion brands. Whether you're brand new to freelancing or looking to improve your current game, hit play so you know how to navigate the freelance job postings, create a standout profile, and write proposals that get you hired. Resources:https://successfulfashiondesigner.com/upwork-proposal-for-fashion-designers/https://successfulfashiondesigner.com/sff172-how-this-freelance-fashion-designer-landed-a-10k-project-on-upwork/https://successfulfashiondesigner.com/fashion-freelancer-first-project-upwork/https://successfulfashiondesigner.com/freelance-fashion-textile-designer-upwork/https://successfulfashiondesigner.com/how-to-get-freelance-fashion-design-jobs-on-upwork/https://successfulfashiondesigner.com/freelance-patternmaker-upwork-profile/ https://successfulfashiondesigner.com/fashion-portfolio/ ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
209: From ยฃ4k to ยฃ12k A Month: How this Freelance Footwear Trend Consultant Did it!
Apr 15 2024
209: From ยฃ4k to ยฃ12k A Month: How this Freelance Footwear Trend Consultant Did it!
Success can be temporary.  It can dry up if you're not prepared. There one day and *POOF* gone the next. That's exactly what happened to my guest in today's episode, Louise Ryan, a freelance footwear trend consultant.  She had a stable freelance income for a while but eventually, it dried up leaving her looking for answers.  She turned to my flagship program FAST and shares how she redesigned her freelance fashion career and essentially tripled her income.  Even with all the strategies at her fingertips though, there's still room for disappointment and rejection.  If you've ever felt like your success is drying up or you feel like throwing in the towel because of the rejection you get, you'll want to listen to this episode as Louise and I talk about the high highs and low lows of freelancing in fashion and how not giving up pays off.  Learn how having the right strategies in your arsenal can protect you from withering away from an unstable income and a dried-up network.About Louise:She is an exceptional creative thinker, designer, and trend forecaster who is passionate about the footwear industry. Her drive to stay up-to-date with the latest innovations and fully comprehend the entire process of footwear design and development is truly inspiring. By collaborating with global trend agencies, brands, and factories, she can provide valuable insights that will shape the future of this dynamic industry. future of this dynamic industry.Connect with Louise:Visit their website: www.larcreative.comEmail at: louise@larcreative.comFollow on Instagram LAR_CREATIVEConnect on Linkedin https://www.linkedin.com/in/louiseryanfashion/ ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
208: The REAL Truth About Being a Freelance Fashion Designer
Apr 8 2024
208: The REAL Truth About Being a Freelance Fashion Designer
Is freelancing in fashion actually as good as it sounds?  From the promises of freedom to the ideas of total flexibility, it can be easy to get swept up in the "dream".There's a lot of positives when it comes to freelancing, but that doesn't mean that you don't have to put in hard work to achieve your freelancing dreams.  In this episode, Kate Knight opens up to share some amazing wins but also gives a realistic perspective of the ups and downs in freelancing.  We also talk about pricing which is always a hot topic that I get tons of questions about.Tune in to find out what the REAL truth about being a freelance fashion designer is like.  You won't want to miss a big win that Kate shares at the end because she started charging for something that she used to give away for free.  About Kate:Kate Knight is a knitwear designer who specializes in creating recycled and sustainable cashmere and cashmere blends. She has previously lived and worked in New York City, London, and the Swiss Alps, but currently resides just outside of Bordeaux, France. Throughout her career, Kate has designed knitwear for well-known brands such as Nordstrom, The White Company, Lands' End, Barney's, and Whistles. She has also taught knitting to individuals across all age groups, including 7-year-olds, PhD students, and industry professionals. Kate is passionate about building connections with factories, yarn agents, brands, fellow freelancers, and designers.Connect with Kate:Visit her website: http://www.thecashmeredesigner.com/Email at: kate@thecashmeredesigner.comFollow on Instagram @thecashmeredesignerConnect on Linkedin https://www.linkedin.com/in/kate-knight-7a05174/Resources Mentioned in this Episode:SFD096 Q&A: How to Become a Fashion freelancer with Heidi & Marissa197 How to Sell Yourself As A Freelance Fashion Designer (without feeling gross) ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
205: How to Become a Fashion Virtual Assistant (VA)
Mar 18 2024
205: How to Become a Fashion Virtual Assistant (VA)
If you're new to the fashion industry or unsure of your skills but want to start as a freelancer, you may consider being a fashion virtual assistant (VA) and earning while you learn.  Find out how you can transform your soft skills into hard cash. You don't need to be a super tech genius to work as a virtual assistant in the fashion industry; basic tech skills and a willingness to learn as you go are enough to get started. Tons of business owners are bogged down with tasks they can do, but do not have the time for.  The VA industry isn't just about ticking off tasks. It *thrives* on soft skills like organization, a knack for creativity, and, oh yes, being a little tech-savvy! So if you have what it takes, you can thrive as a fashion virtual assistant and start earning while you develop your fashion design skills.About Aubree:Aubree Malick is a boy mom, former teacher, virtual assistant coach, and host of the Freelancer to CEO podcast. Through her podcast and programs, she helps overworked and underpaid moms and (soon-to-be former) teachers experience the freedom and joy that comes from designing a freelancing business with the skills they already have. After taking her own leap of faith four years ago and replacing her teaching income within two months, she became passionate about helping other women start and grow their own businesses to 5K+ months from home and has been featured in Business Insider and Yahoo! Finance.Connect with Aubree:Visit their website: aubreemalick.comEmail at: hello@aubreemalick.comFollow on Instagram Listen to Aubree's Podcast Freelancer to the CEO ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
204: How This Freelance Fashion Designer from India Landed a Gig with WGSN
Mar 11 2024
204: How This Freelance Fashion Designer from India Landed a Gig with WGSN
Knowing how to add value to your clients without sacrificing your mental health is a lesson many freelance fashion designers learn on their freelancing journey.  It's all too easy to listen to self-doubt and let imposter syndrome creep in which ultimately will lead to resentment, burnout, or missing out on huge opportunities. So how can you land freelance gigs from big names while overcoming challenges such as low self-esteem and even geographical constraints?It's easier than you may think! Our guest, Harshini, is a fashion designer who landed a job with WGSN despite their minimal presence in India and lack of a head office in her home country. She has also faced familiar mindset issues that can hold us back, which led her to low-paying clients and work she grew to hate. In this podcast episode, you can listen to the strategies she implemented to change the trajectory of her career which enabled her to outsource work, increase her rates, and secure higher-paying projects. You will also learn about the challenges and triumphs Harshini faced as she navigated motherhood, low self-esteem, and learning her worth in a competitive industry.About Harshini:Harshini is a womenswear designer and trend consultant with 7 years of industry experience. She's worked with big names like Zara, French Connection UK, Yamaha, and WGSN. With a postgraduate degree from the London College of Fashion, she enjoys creating cool casual wear for women, especially in the resort wear niche.Offering everything from initial concepts to pre-production, Harshini's helping small to mid-sized women's resort wear brands thrive. With her sharp eye for style and a knack for understanding what people want, she's making brands stand out and connect with their audiences effortlessly.Connect with Harshini:Follow on InstagramConnect on Linkedin ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
202: How to Build Your Freelance Career on LinkedIn While Learning CLO 3D
Feb 26 2024
202: How to Build Your Freelance Career on LinkedIn While Learning CLO 3D
Want to kickstart your freelance career while learning a new industry skill, like Clo3D?In this Fashion Designers Get Paid episode, we hear a clip from a strategy session with fashion designer Sharon Hay, who's breaking into fashion from the tech industry and learning Clo3D. So, how can you build your network and line up clients while still learning?It's not about waiting until you're an expert before putting yourself out there. Instead, it's about engaging and sharing what you're working on, starting authentic conversations, and connecting with brands who may need your services down the line.Tune in as we talk about specific strategies to pull this off (and it works for any fashion design niche).  By building a strong network, sharing your learning process, and engaging with others in your industry, you can confidently secure trial projects to refine your skills. So, go ahead and put yourself out there and make meaningful connections!Mentioned in this Episode:If you're going to do LinkedIn, I literally think you'd be CRAZY not to take this course. Full disclaimer, it's an affiliate link, but I would recommend it 100000% either way: https://learn.justinwelsh.me/a/2147505019/Vq8CxAWVAbout Sharon Hay:Sharon has been working as a professional digital design and UX project manager for 15 years, and has worked with some of the top tech firms and retailers in Silicon Valley! However, she's always been passionate about both technology and fashion. That's why she decided to follow her heart and redirect her career to a path that truly fuels her passion while promoting sustainability. She became a Clo3D master, specializing in providing virtual fashion design solutions, utilizing her past fashion experience. Connect with Sharon:Visit their website: www.retailbrandlab.comEmail at: sharonhay@me.comConnect on Linkedin ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
201: You DON'T Need Another Time Management Tool: The REAL Reason You're Procrastinating
Feb 19 2024
201: You DON'T Need Another Time Management Tool: The REAL Reason You're Procrastinating
Ever feel like one of the biggest roadblocks in your fashion design career is procrastination?If you find yourself reaching for the newest or trendy technology hoping to finally find your holy grail for staying on task (spoiler alert: it wasn't it), then this episode has your name written all over it!  I talk with Grace Brodeur who specializes in helping entrepreneurs overcome procrastination so they can increase their time, financial, and mental freedom.  She shares her insights on setting goals, navigating emotional blocks, and giving procrastination the well-deserved boot.Mentioned in this Episode:EFT Tapping with Brad YatesAbout Grace Brodeur:While getting her Master of Science and working in consulting, Grace experienced ongoing procrastination, deadline crunches, fear, overwhelm, and overthinking that kept her stuck. She could not find comprehensive training that achieved permanent solutions, so she decided to create it herself. Grace is a trauma-informed performance coach who has built a community of over 250,000 individuals. She has blended her mastery of 5 modalities with her unique experience of working with 500+ procrastinators to deliver efficient programs that address the root cause of self-sabotaging patterns. Connect with Grace:Visit her websiteEmail her at: support@gracebrodeur.comFollow on InstagramFollow on TikTok ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
200:  How This Freelance Fashion Designer & Mom From Brazil Learned English & Built Her Business in the Cracks of the Day
Feb 12 2024
200: How This Freelance Fashion Designer & Mom From Brazil Learned English & Built Her Business in the Cracks of the Day
What if you had to completely restart your fashion career?  And what if you were also faced with a lot of barriers?That's exactly what this fashion designer, mom of two, and my guest, Andressa Iop, faced when she moved from Brazil to the U.S.  Between learning a new language, juggling the hectic schedule of motherhood, and everything else, she found time in the cracks of her day to fit in time to rebuild her fashion career.Andressa shares more about her success and the amazing way she finds time for fashion design.  If you ever wished you could buy a new MAC or make $3k working part-time, then you'll love this episode of Fashion Designers Get Paid.  Hear how she did it and how you can too!About Andressa Iop:Andressa is an exceptional fashion and textile designer with over ten years of experience in the kidswear industry. She specializes in bringing seasonal collections to life, from the initial concept to the final product. Her passion for her work is evident in every detail of her designs, and she offers her expertise to startups and mid-sized brands in need of guidance in various areas of product development. With Andressa's help, brands can create beautiful, high-quality clothing that will inspire and delight parents and children alike.Connect with Andressa:Email at: dressaiop@gmail.comFollow on InstagramConnect on Linkedin ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
197: How to Sell Yourself As A Freelance Fashion Designer (without feeling gross)
Jan 22 2024
197: How to Sell Yourself As A Freelance Fashion Designer (without feeling gross)
Woah...did we just crack the code of sales conversations to land more freelance fashion design clients?!If you've ever felt sales conversations were scary or just need to elevate your sales game, then our guest, Nikki Rausch, is here to share her best tips and tricks to help you feel confident in your sales calls.  We talk about navigating the sales staircase framework, using the power of smart questions, and leading the conversation with finesse. Learn how to make your potential clients feel understood, tailor your offers to their needs, and even snag a free gift training on mastering the sales conversation. Get ready to level up your sales game and leave your clients saying "yes" in style! About Nikki Rausch:CEO of Sales Maven, Nikki Rausch has the unique ability to transform the misunderstood process of โ€œsellingโ€. With 25+ years of selling experience, entrepreneurs and small business owners now hire Nikki to show them how to sell successfully and authentically. Nikki has written 3 books, all available on Amazon. And she has a podcast called Sales Maven which you can find on your favorite podcast platform.Nikki is a sales professional who believes in teaching others to be strategic and genuine in their own unique ways. She provides structure and guidance for sales conversations, while also emphasizing the importance of authenticity and organic communication. Nikki's approach is about giving people the tools to be successful in sales, rather than imposing her own style on them. She believes in the power of individuality and finding a balance between structure and personal expression in sales.Mentioned in this Episode:Podcast Episode 181: The Secret to Get New Clients on Autopilot for Your Freelance Fashion Design Business Connect with Nikki:Visit their website: https://yoursalesmaven.comEmail at: nikki@yoursalesmaven.comFollow on InstagramConnect on LinkedinFree Mastering The Sales Conversation Training: https://yoursalesmaven.com/fashion ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live
195: Fashion Sourcing Trade Show Tips for Freelancers (Andreu David, VP of Sourcing at Magic)
Jan 8 2024
195: Fashion Sourcing Trade Show Tips for Freelancers (Andreu David, VP of Sourcing at Magic)
Should freelance fashion designers attend a sourcing trade show?Let's go straight to the source with the vice president of the largest sourcing trade show in North America to get the answer and insider tips to make the most of your trade show experience.  Andreu David is the vice president of Sourcing at Magic is here to help find the perfect vendors and suppliers for your freelance clients or your own fashion brand, And so much more.As the Vice President of SOURCING at MAGIC for Informa Markets Fashion, Andreu spearheads a team renowned for hosting the largest sourcing trade show in North America. In addition, with over 20 years of experience in the fashion industry, Andreu is the CEO and Creative Director of his own brand, provides consultation services to fellow entrepreneurs with his company, Brand Design Architects, and teaches fashion design and business at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. After matriculating with a BS in Marketing from the University of Southern California and a BFA in Fashion Design from Parsons School of Design, he began his career with a design apprenticeship at Hermรจs in Paris, France, subsequently held long-term senior management design roles at Double RL Ralph Lauren and Banana Republic and led as Creative Director of a startup brand in New York.Connect with Andreu:Visit the Sourcing Magic WebsiteEmail at sourcing@fashionresource.comConnect on Linkedin ๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Register for the 1-day live event training on May 30th at https://sewheidi.com/live