Models and designers both work in the wide world of fashion, so becoming a model from a designer isn’t a big change as far as the industry goes. But their job qualifications are very different. Both models and fashion designers spend a lot of time with clothing, maintain portfolios to land new jobs, and travel places for work.
If a fashion designer holds all the necessary skills and characteristics for becoming a model, then there is no reason they could not do so. However, a fashion designer might need to go through some modeling training and or modeling classes to become ready for modeling.
If you work in the fashion design industry but have been thinking about becoming a model, then this article is for you. It takes a great deal of discipline, perseverance, people skills, and also some good looks to become a model.
Can Fashion Designers Model Their Own Clothes?
It is not recommended for fashion designers to model their clothes because they might not fit into their own designs.
- Most fashion designers have a target audience that they are trying to sell to, and if the designer wears their own clothes, it might deter customers from buying their designs.
- However, if you just need some quick pictures taken of your clothes for your website, then it should be all right to take pictures of yourself wearing your own clothes.
- If you are displaying your clothes in person, though, it is best to hire some models, because you would not be able to wear more than one of your designs.
What to Consider as a Designer Wanting to Become a Model
If a designer is really determined to become a model, there are a few key factors to mull over. Here are a few things to consider as a designer before making the commitment to modeling.
Modeling Has More Specific Requirements
As a model, you may need to adhere to a lot of very specific requirements, from height and weight to looks, depending on the type of modeling you choose. Here are some of the strict requirements for female and male fashion models:
- Height: 5 feet 9 inches to 6 feet
- Weight: 105 to 130 pounds
- Measurement: 34-24-34
- Age: 16 to 21
- Height: 5 feet 11 inches to 6 feet 2 inches
- Weight: 140 to 165 pounds
- Measurement: waist- 29 to 32 inches, jacket size- 40 and 42
- Age: 18 to 25
Aside from body requirements, there are other important qualities or characteristic requirements to become a fashion model.
- You must be able to show confidence and believe you have what it takes to be a great model.
- You need to have thick skin since you might get rejected more than once.
- You also need to have fantastic people skills because you will be meeting new people regularly.
Unlike with fashion designing, modeling does not require higher education, but having a degree in fashion design can help you land more or better modeling jobs than if you do not have any form of higher education.
As a fashion designer, you do not need to be a specific size or height, but you do need to have a proper education and some important skills. Some of those skills include:
- Communication: Since most fashion designers work with teams, it is extremely important to have good communication skills; otherwise, your project could fall apart.
- Attention to detail: When designing clothing or other accessories, it is imperative that every part of the design is absolutely perfect.
- Artistic abilities: Designers must be able to create a finished product from a sketch they have created on the computer or drawn by hand.
- Time management: Having good time management skills is a must when you have to get designs finished by a specific deadline.
Besides the artistic portion of this list, all of these skills are a must and great to have when becoming a model.
Modeling Might Pay Less Money
Both fashion designing and modeling pull in a pretty good income, but modeling usually pays less than designing, and we will explore a couple of the reasons why.
Whether you are working as a freelance designer or working for a manufacturer, you should make roughly the same amount of money.
- Fashion designers make anywhere from $72,000 to $98,000 per year.
- Fashion designers make so much per year because there is a lot of work that goes into creating the perfect designs.
- Fashion designers typically work 40 hours per week or more, which is also why they tend to make more money than models.
All types of modeling pay different rates, so it is difficult to determine exactly how much a model will make per year.
- Models typically make anywhere from $27,000 to $55,000 per year.
- Models do not make as much as designers because they only showcase the finished designs.
- If models are unable to find work, they may go through a period of unemployment.
Modeling Requires a Different Work Setting
Most fashion designers only work behind the scenes in a studio setting.
- Sometimes fashion designers work alone, but a lot of times, they work with a team made up of other fashion designers, seamstresses, pattern makers, and a project manager.
- When working as a fashion designer, you are generally pretty comfortable, but you could end up working some long hours.
- Freelance fashion designers usually work longer hours and in smaller settings than fashion designers that work for manufacturing establishments or wholesalers.
Models, however, are the faces of the fashion industry and usually need to travel to various places for work. The setting could be anything from a photoshoot to runway modeling.
- Models work closely with photographers, makeup artists, and sometimes fashion designers.
- When working as a model, you might need to stay in a certain pose for a long time during a photoshoot, which can be very uncomfortable.
- Models might even need to work outside in all sorts of weather conditions.
- Most models only work part-time because modeling can be very stressful.
You Might Need to Travel More
Depending on what type of model a fashion designer is trying to become, they might be required to travel a lot more. They might also have to work on short notice, which makes being a model super unpredictable.
Traveling for Models
- Most models frequently travel throughout the month.
- High demand models might have to travel on a weekly basis.
- Models do not always have to pay for their travel expenses, sometimes they are paid for by their modeling agent or client.
Traveling for Fashion Designers
- Fashion designers typically only travel a handful of times per year.
- Fashion designers travel to fashion shows to keep up with fashion trends, and sometimes they have to travel to meet with material and fabric suppliers or manufacturers.
There are Different Types of Modeling
The transition to modeling from designing also means choosing a modeling niche that fits with your overall style, appearance, and skillset. Here are some of those types of modeling.
- Fashion models use their looks to show and help sell clothing or accessories.
- Fashion models mostly pose for photoshoots but also participate in live fashion shows.
- Fashion modeling can be more selective than other types of modeling.
- Runway models strut down the catwalk in front of an audience wearing fancy clothes from a designer’s clothing line.
- Runway modeling is closer to performance art than it is to fashion.
- For this type of modeling, the models need to be a precise size and height.
Swimsuit and Lingerie Modeling
- Swimsuit models require a very particular body type, and they usually promote beverages, boat shows, resort industries, and other water-related activities.
- Lingerie models also require a very particular body type, and they usually just pose for photoshoots but also might participate in a runway show.
- Both of these types of modeling require someone curvy, and they also model sleepwear and summer wear.
- Commercial modeling does not require a certain body type so that anyone could do it.
- Commercial models advertise a wide variety of things, from products to campaigns.
- Most commercial models look like everyday people.
- A plus-size model is any model that is overweight or obese, and they typically advertise clothes for Big & Tall or Tall men and women.
- Plus-size models can advertise clothing, or they can advertise footwear, cosmetics, and other things.
- Most plus-size models still need to meet height and weight requirements.
- Fitness models must have a muscular body, but they do not need to be a certain height.
- Fitness models wear and help sell fitness attire and demonstrate fitness routines in commercials.
- It seems that most fitness models are men.
- Parts models specialize in certain parts of their body like their arms, hands, legs, feet, or facial features.
- Parts models need to have well-proportioned body parts that fit standard sized apparel, shoes, or jewelry.
- Glamour models need to possess a certain kind of beauty and sex appeal and are geared toward a male audience.
- Glamour modeling is less about selling clothing than it is about selling the model.
- Glamour models can be male or female, but a lot of glamour models are females.
- Print models are found in magazines, booklets, flyers, and billboards.
- Some print models sell a product, but others are just photographed for their looks.
- Print models do not need to be of a certain shape or size.
- Promotional models drive consumer demand for a service, brand, or product and are often found at trade shows.
- Promotional models must have some knowledge about the product or service they are representing.
There are other types of modeling out there, but these are about half of them. It seems like no matter what your body type is, there is likely a place for you in the modeling world.
Can Friends Model Your Clothes as a Fashion Designer?
If your friend fits the description of your target audience and if they are willing to model your clothes, then there is no reason they cannot model your clothes for you.
- Hiring a friend to model your clothing is a great way to save some money.
- It would be a lot easier to work with a friend since you both know each other and are comfortable around each other.
- As your friend is helping you model your clothes, you are in turn helping your friend further their modeling career, which is a win-win.
If a fashion designer is seriously thinking about becoming a model, they have a multitude of options. Also, if they hold a degree in fashion design, they could have an easier time finding modeling jobs.