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Freelance Fashion Designer's Handbook

ISBN: 978-1-4443-3506-4
192 pages
May 2012
Freelance Fashion Designer
Do you have the passion and the creativity for fashion?   Why not earn a living from it?

The Freelance Fashion Designer's Handbook is your essential guide on how to go it alone, covering what to expect, making sure you get paid, planning your time, keeping up with your accounts, compiling technical packages for garments.  It is your portable mentor, equipping you to work independently.

Part 1 covers all the information to becoming a freelance designer such as creating a basic freelance contract, invoicing, how to find work, tax returns and much more.  All supported with case studies.

Part 2 contains the technical aspects of being a designer - including how to compile full technical packages for garments to be manufactured abroad.

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About the author xi

Acknowledgements xiii

About the website xiv

Glossary xv

Part 1 Setting up as a Freelance Designer

Chapter 1 The Reality of Life as a Designer 3

1 Will freelance work be suitable for you? 4

2 Experience, qualifications, skills and abilities 9

3 Working alone, self-discipline and motivation 13

Chapter 2 Getting Started 17

1 Selecting a location 18

2 Working from home or in a studio 20

3 Buying equipment, IT and furniture 23

4 Creating your company profile and CV 25

5 Planning your portfolio 27

6 Choosing a working wardrobe 28

7 Identifying pitfalls and customer issues 30

Chapter 3 Getting Work and Getting Paid 33

1 Where to look for work and how to get it 34

2 Professional organisations 36

3 Sales techniques 38

4 Calculating your rates and expenses 39

5 Interview tips 43

Chapter 4 Estimates and Invoices 47

1 Calculating an estimate or quote 48

2 Invoicing clients 51

3 Travelling abroad with and for a client 53

4 What your client expects from you 54

Chapter 5 Financial Matters 57

1 Choosing an accountant 58

2 Finance and bank accounts 59

3 Income tax 60

4 Bookkeeping and accountancy 61

5 National Insurance contributions 69

6 VAT – do I need to register? 69

7 Pension provision 70

8 Employing staff 70

9 Health and safety 71

10 Insurance 71

Chapter 6 Legal Aspects 73

1 The importance of contracts 74

2 Writing a contract 74

3 Intellectual property rights, copyright and design rights 76

4 Keeping yourself safe from prosecution for breach of copyright 77

5 Confidentiality 78

6 Keeping up to date with UK and EU law 79

7 How to find an expert on law in the fashion industry 79

Chapter 7 Getting Paid 81

1 Chasing outstanding invoices 82

2 What to do when a client fails to pay 82

3 The small claims court 83

Chapter 8 Planning Your Time 87

1 The working day 88

2 Your freelance diary 89

3 Holidays and your year plan 89

4 Interruptions and distractions 90

5 How to stand your ground when unreasonable demands are made 92

6 Computer timesheets 94

7 Backing up 100

Chapter 9 Training and Education 101

1 Extra training 102

2 Seminars and training courses for the self-employed 102

3 Part-time teaching 103

Part 2 Preparing Work for Production

Chapter 10 Design and Development 107

1 Research and trends 108

2 Working to a design brief 109

3 Concept and design, style or shape 110

4 The PANTONE® colour system 111

5 Colour palettes 113

6 Branding 114

7 Tickets and labels 114

8 Preparing roughs 115

9 Presenting your ideas to your client 115

Chapter 11 Presentation and Finished Designs 117

1 Using drawing software for presentation CADs 118

2 Phases of a project 118

3 Phase 1: Preparing presentation roughs 119

4 Preparing a CAD template for a client 122

5 Preparing a colour palette 123

6 Phase 2: Preparing presentation-standard A4 CADs 125

7 Phase 3: Preparing detailed garment specifications 133

8 Compiling the full technical package 141

9 References 142

Chapter 12 Sizing 143

1 Sizing issues 144

2 Access to current information 145

3 Why sizing is different for different companies 146

4 Charts for specific sizing issues 147

5 Creating Excel size charts 148

6 Flat measurements 150

7 Grade increments 151

8 Pre-production sampling and size sets 152

9 Tolerance 153

10 Creating a ‘to fit’ body measurement size chart 153

11 Creating a garment size chart 155

12 References 164

Organisations and Useful Information 165

Index 169

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Not only can you benefit from expert advice inside the book, but you also have additional online material to support you:

Income and expenditure templates have been created to help you balance the books.

Time sheet templates are there to help you calculate time spent for each client.

'To fit' body measurements size chart templates have either a single grade or individual grades for each size to help with your design.

Garment size charts templates can be used for women's, men's, girls', boys' and unisex garments. Increments and tolerances on the charts may be altered to suit individual requirements.

These online resources have been created to help you run your business and allow you to focus on the thing you love the most; designing.

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