In any industry, possessing a depth of knowledge about the key companies, individuals and issues is essential to success. Fashion is no different. While you no doubt have a stack of fashion magazines at home and surf the Web constantly to check out the latest style blogs, employers will expect you to have a deeper understanding of how the industry works. For example, it’s not uncommon for a potential employer to quiz candidates on their favorite business resources during an interview. So it’s a good idea to develop the habit of staying abreast of the latest news. Below, we’ve assembled some influential resources to get you started:
Women’s Wear Daily—an industry publication covering all aspects of fashion, including trends, sourcing, retail, wholesale and consumer behavior. Most content is available by subscription only, but it’s possible that your school or employer will receive the print version or have access to it online. If not, subscribe to the free e-mail newsletter, which lists each day’s headlines. Stories like “Retailers Key in on the Most Bankable Season” provide insight into a who’s who in the industry.
The Business of Fashion—provides a few original features but primarily aggregates stories about the global fashion industry from a wide range of news media (e.g. Forbes, Reuters, the International Herald Tribune). Subscribe to the daily newsletter; if you’re pressed for time in the morning, it’s a great, quick cheat sheet. For example, a recent original story spotlights how merging editorial and commerce—think Net-a-Porter—is changing our idea of content.
The Wall Street Journal—regularly covers fashion, industry and retail trends in its Life & Culture section. Coverage includes stories on how to wear the latest styles, how changes in society impact how we dress, emerging and established designers and emerging markets. In “Wanted: a Second Chance,” the paper takes a look at what it’s like to gain success in the fashion industry, lose it and try again.
As a companion to the paper, the Wall Street Journal runs the Heard on the Runway blog, which primarily focuses on reviews of the major fashion shows each season.
The New York Times—through its Fashion & Style pages, the Times has positioned itself as a leader in industry coverage. In addition to profiles and issue-related topics, the paper publishes street style photos from around New York and the world. The story “Nurturing by a Style Angel” is a good example of the paper’s business reporting, which in this case looks at one way designers receive financing for their lines.
Additionally, the Times runs the On the Runway blog, which features shorter pieces from well-known editors like Cathy Horyn. A recent post covered the latest on the John Galliano saga.
The following papers offer additional in-depth fashion coverage:
After studying a number of these resources, you’ll begin to understand how the industry works. In addition, it’s a good idea to set up Google Alerts for any companies you’re interested in in order to stay current on the latest news for each.