Teen Apparel - The Next Big Thing in Fashion Design

by Sarah Clark
Fashion School Review Columnist

September 24, 2007

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Fashion design used to be tailored toward women of means - those who were married or pursued careers. But now more and more apparel companies are targeting teens. What does this mean for students in fashion school?

Teen Fashion Goes Bold
Some of the largest and most popular retailers to successfully enter the fashion design scene in recent years, such as H&M and Zara, are known for their hip young clothes and bold accessories. Their clothes are unabashedly trendy, flirty, and blatantly aimed at young consumers, those not afraid to reveal more and take fashion risks.

Large advertising agencies and companies are also looking to cash in on the teen market. Products today from iPhones to perfume (CK in2u) are marketed to young consumers who have more disposable income than any previous generation of youth.

Designing for Teens in Fashion School
The rise of the teen market as a serious consumer group has implications for students in fashion school. As every fashion designer knows, fashion is dictated by the market to some extent, responding to cultural and socio-economic trends. Teen fashion design differs from fashion for women of a certain age, or those dressing for their first job. Teen style is unique in its embrace of experimentation and controversial trends. For some clothing designers, it's the most desirable market to design for because you can introduce new styles each season with little concern for tradition.

During fashion school you'll learn how the clothing design market is segmented. You'll learn about sportswear, formal and evening wear, and business attire. You may have the opportunity to learn about designing for all clothing markets, or to simply focus on one segment of the market, such as teen wear.

So whether you want to specialize in teen clothing design, or just want to become familiar with the youth market, there's plenty of opportunity to learn the ins and outs of clothing design for the most fickle and fun of fashion consumers.

About the Author
Sarah Clark is a freelance writer specializing in career development and postsecondary education.

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