CareerExplorer’s step-by-step guide on how to become a costume designer.

Step 1

Is becoming a costume designer right for me?

Step One Photo

The first step to choosing a career is to make sure you are actually willing to commit to pursing the career. You don’t want to waste your time doing something you don’t want to do. If you’re new here, you should read about:

What do costume designers do?
Career Satisfaction
Are costume designers happy with their careers?
What are costume designers like?

Still unsure if becoming a costume designer is the right career path? to find out if this career is in your top matches. Perhaps you are well-suited to become a costume designer or another similar career!

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Frequently Asked Questions

How to become a Costume Designer

It is imperative that all costume designers have good fashion sense, extensive knowledge of the fashion world and bring imagination, creativity and drive to the table. Being knowledgeable in theatre and film production is a definite plus.

Although you may have a strong sense of fashion and are an accomplished seamstress, in order to work as a costume designer you must also receive formal education in costume or fashion design. There are both two and four-year programs which meet the minimum requirements for employment but more advanced skills such as those acquired through a four-year program will improve your chances of being hired. Many costume designers have master's degrees which include a focus on theatre, broadcasting, costume design, literature or marketing. Although an advanced degree is not a hard requirement, the greater experience and knowledge you have, the more marketable you are.

Any opportunity to work as an intern will provide invaluable experience, and this combined with your formal education will help to develop your portfolio while also showing your drive. The best way to ensure future work as a costume designer is to take advantage of every opportunity presented to you to work, even if it is for free and as an apprentice.