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Dream Fashion Job: Starting an Online Fashion Boutique

Dream Fashion Job: Starting an Online Fashion Boutique

Have you always wanted to open your very own store? Are you driven and want to be your own boss? Get the scoop on becoming a fashion boutique owner!

Successful boutique owners are very entrepreneurial-minded people who use a combination of great business savvy and a knowledge of the fashion industry to make profits. Their boutiques target specific customers and carry an assortment of clothing/accessory/beauty designers that appeal to their target market. Boutique owners must be willing to do whatever it takes to get the business going, from planning their inventory, to ringing up customer sales and even cleaning up the store.

Owners must be able to attract investors to fund the initial opening and daily operations of the store. Some boutique owners use loans or personal savings to do so. A solid understanding of business becomes key in obtaining capital to open your store.


Education: A bachelor’s degree in Business Management or Fashion Retailing/Merchandising/Marketing is common.

Experience: Extensive experience in the fashion retail industry in a variety of positions.

Suggested Skills: Solid business skills; management skills; interpersonal skills; knowledge of trends and forecasts; time-management skills.

Personal Characteristics: Entrepreneurial and risk-taking personality; persistence; ability to self-promote.

Here’s what Grace Wang, Founder of Unsung Designers, has to say about running an online fashion boutique!

“When I decided to start up my boutique, it was really an issue of timing. I was working at a small start-up that went out of business and I wasn’t sure what my next step should be. A colleague and I talked about opening a boutique in Washington, DC. We thought it would be great to work for ourselves in an industry we both loved. Our talk turned into research. We started writing a business plan. The big labels didn’t excite me, I always sought out interesting young designers. They were much more cutting edge, they were always ahead of trends. The boutique idea turned into a website because we wanted to reach a wider customer base. We were so excited about the emerging designers, we wanted to make them accessible to people in small towns, across the country, around the world.”

Now that Unsung Designers is a successful business, Grace offers some insight on what a typical day is like for her. “An average day for me always starts with a big pot of coffee! I read the fashion news. I take care of orders, customer service, reply to emails from designers, media, general inquiries. I usually spend lunch meeting with a designer or showroom rep. This is networking time. It’s important to constantly talk to other people in the industry, especially when you work from home like I do”.

For Grace, the best part of being a Online Fashion Boutique Owner is being immersed in an industry she has a passion for. “It used to be a guilty pleasure, when I’d surf fashion sites and do online shopping at my 9-5. I’ve learned that working for yourself allows you a lot of flexibility. Working for yourself is also a big challenge. You have to be a self-starter or you’ll never get things done” says Grace. In the 4 years that she’s been in business, Grace has stayed true to the designers the business is based on, “It was always about respect for the creative process and love for clothes. I fiercely protect my designers and trust their creative instinct. I’ve done what I wanted to do and have close, trusting relationships with my designers”, stated Grace.…

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A Run Through Of The Education And Career Details Of A Fashion Degree

A Run Through Of The Education And Career Details Of A Fashion Degree

The Far Reaches of Fashion

No matter who you are, your life is touched by the work of a fashion designer. Every morning when we wake up, we make important decisions about who we are going to be that day. Selecting articles of clothing, which are each the product of many complicated decisions, gives us a sense of expression and a way to make a statement about ourselves to the world without ever having a conversation with someone. From the concept to the store, a fashion designer plays a pertinent role in our lives every single day.

A Creative Career

You may be someone who has felt a certain affinity for the statements that can be made by apparel, and now that you are in a position to be choosing your career path you may be considering fashion. From shoes to hats and everything in between, the world of fashion is vast and constantly changing to suit the needs of the consumer. People often reinvent themselves many times throughout their lives, which means that clothing represents much more than a way to shield us from the elements.

As a fashion design major, you will be preparing to enter a competitive industry that always has room for new visions as well as classic tastes. Having an eye for design as well as the ability to understand the construction of a piece will be necessary in this field. Fashion designers make decisions about materials, intricate details, and overall style while considering the target audience of their product.


There are several ways to approach your education if you are aspiring to work in the fashion industry. Some people choose to become educated in fashion design as well as business, as the integration of these two areas is an excellent combination for someone who wants to be an entrepreneur. Two year and four year fashion degrees are the standard for most employers, though some people may choose to go on an earn an advanced degree.

Participating in an internship is generally required of people majoring in fashion, since first hand exposure to the industry provides the best training. The coursework that makes up this degree includes learning about pattern making, color choice, computer aided design, tailoring and sewing, and fashion history.

People entering this field will also study math, since measurements and shape combination play a large role in clothing construction. Human anatomy is studied so that aspiring designers are able to effectively fit clothes to different body types. Some fashion majors even study psychology so they can get an understanding of how people respond to certain colors, patterns, and styles.

Job Details

If you are entering this field, you will find that most job opportunities will be found in California or New York. The available number of jobs in this industry is predicted to remain constant. Many people find this field appealing, since it allows a creative outlet and the opportunity to reach many people with your designs.…

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Fashionable Handcrafted Thai Products

Fashionable Handcrafted Thai Products

To put it simply, Thailand is a beautiful country: exotic and unique. Thailand is located in Southeast Asia, and while it shares some similarities with its neighbors, Thailand has its own individual thumb print. The Mae Hong Son mountains epitomize the country’s natural beauty. Also, ancient history in intertwined with modern life. Thailand is a tropical getaway and yet the culture of Thailand is so much deeper than beaches and surfing. Thailand is breathtaking.

As with other lands, Thailand is a land of diversity. Divided into four different regions are the peninsular South, the Northeast Plateaus, the Central Plain, and Northern Thailand. Each region offers its own exclusive contributions.

Thai artisans are inspired by their country and their religion. The Thai people are Buddhists, and Buddhism is woven into many Thai products. It infiltrates their culture and their handmade crafts, their art and their handmade jewellery. Even those who are not devout Buddhists find comfort and beauty in the religion.

The Thai people celebrate its magnificent elephants. Images of Elephants are available on silk handbags, silk robes, jewelry, and many other items such as stuffed toys.

Thai handmade crafts include items as silk bags and apparel, unique pencils, beautiful chopsticks, bamboo handbags and other fashionable items. Like other Asian cultures, Thailand produces paper hand fans and bamboo fans.

Detailed handcrafted Thai products seem to start with a silver base. Even if silver is not included in the piece, most everything that is created in Thailand has silver at its root. It’s not extremely sparkly, but Thai handmade jewellery dangles and jangles. Eye catching and unique, anyone who wears it will feel exotic and beautiful. Even the smallest piece – a bracelet or ring – changes simple fashion into dazzling fashion.

These fashions are now getting more abundant around the world, with a lot of other designers turning to inspiration from Thailand and other Asian countries to capture a unique product with vibrant details and colors.

The Thai people are extremely creative with handmade crafts made with the finest detailing possible. There are a lot of communities that specialize in certain areas of fashions and crafts that can be purchased throughout shops around Thailand, with some that are available for online purchases.

Thai products – especially the handmade items – are focused around textiles and jewelry. The Thai people are proud of their culture. That pride is found in their arts and handcrafted pieces. Whether it is a wall hanging of an elephant painted on velvet or a beautifully beaded bracelet, Thailand’s beauty is undeniable.…

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Common Causes of Acne

Common Causes of Acne

There are many myths around what actually causes acne. Everything from junk food to the wrong skin care regime is often blamed. Here, we’ve listed some of the most common causes of acne, and address some of the myths associated with it that simply aren’t true.

Stress- Stress is definitely as real cause of acne in adults. The adrenal glands can be disrupted by chronic stress and kick in to overdrive boosting the levels of oil produced in the skin making it the perfect place for acne to develop.

Hormonal Changes- Hormonal changes are definitely another contributing cause of acne in many people. When hormone are unbalanced, for instance, during pregnancy, puberty or menopause for example acne can appear due to an overproduction of oil in the skin by androgens (a hormone present in both men and women.)

Medications- Certain medications can also cause acne.

Myths about causes of acne

Acne is something you should only get as a teenager- Acne is something that is extremely common, and doesn’t only occur in teenagers. In fact, 85% of people suffer from adult acne.

By not cleaning the skin frequently enough- It is often said that acne is caused by lack of cleansing or personal hygiene however this is simply not true. In fact, over-washing and cleaning of the skin can exacerbate acne.

Acne is caused by junk food- Although junk food may not be good for you, there are no definitive links between specific foods and acne.

If you do suffer from adult acne there are some wonderful products on the market that are ideal for acne prone skin. It is simply a matter of finding the right skin care regime for you.

Here are a few recommendations for some of the best skin care products for acne prone skin:

MD Formulations and Dermalogica are two skin care brands which have some outstanding products ideal for acne prone skin. Here are a few we’d recommend:

* When your skin has an outbreak, a great way to calm the skin is by using Dermalogica’s Medibac Overnight Clearing Gel. It not only helps to calm the skin, but also aids in reducing future breakouts by reducing the amount of excess sebum and removing bacteria from the skin.

* Those with a busy lifestyle will love Dermalogica’s Medibac Skin Purifying Wipes. They are perfect for on the go and cleanse skin in one easy step, removing excess oil and dirt at the same time.

* If you do suffer from acne prone skin you may shy away from sunscreens and moisturisers from fear of causing more oil on the skins surface. However it is important to still protect your skin and keep it hydrated. Dermalogica have a wonderful Oil Free Matte Block SPF20 which is weightless and actually absorbs excess oil from the skin.

* Lastly, the Vit-A-Plus Clearing Complex Masque by MD Formulations is a great clearing masque containing Retinol-pure Vitamin A to take away oil, blemishes and reduce enlarged pores. Great for calming and relaxing the skin.

I hope we’ve cleared up some of the myths about acne, and given you some tips on how to choose the best skin care regime, for acne prone skin.…

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The Beauty of Hand Made Egg Style Pendants

The Beauty of Hand Made Egg Style Pendants

Hand Made Egg Style Pendants make wonderful gifts for anyone who appreciates unique jewelry. The best pendants are hand crafted, egg style pendants made in 24-karat gold, silver, hand applied cold enamel in a selection of jewel-like colors, and meticulously applied Swarovski crystal embellishments. There are styles and themes to suit every shopper, including Irish Claddagh-inspired designs, festive symbols, elegant patterns and flowers, these Faberge style pendants remain true to the very pieces created by Carl Faberge himself. He was commissioned by the Tsar Nicholas III of Russia to create a special gift for him to present to his wife Maria at Easter time.

A pendant is such a versatile piece of jewelry; it can be worn on a chain of any length, either on its own or as part of a group of pendants together on the one chain. It can also be displayed when not being worn. It is a timeless item that can be passed on to future generations and incorporated into a contemporary look. When a pendant is hand crafted, it is even more special; it feels as if you are wearing a little piece of history around your neck. Somebody took the time to create a miniature work of art and put in the effort to make it absolutely perfect. Many of the pendants include “hidden” treasures inside in the form of lockets or come with their own stand.

When you buy a pendant from Peerless Pendants, you can be sure of exquisite design, impeccable craftsmanship and fantastic attention to detail. As the collection of pieces offered grows, take the opportunity to add to your own personal collection too, and have a different Hand Made Pendant for any occasion. Add an accent of color to a chic black cocktail dress with a Faberge style pendant in cobalt blue or ruby red. Add a touch of sparkle to a casual everyday outfit with an egg style pendant glistening with Swarovski crystals. Why not buy one for each of your friends this Christmas. Take time to choose the perfect piece for a special friend and she will treasure it forever.…

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Essential This Autumn – Women’s Cardigans

Essential This Autumn – Women’s Cardigans

Light Weight Cardigan.

A lightweight cotton cardigan is perfect for layering. Wear it belted over a blouse for work. Paired with a pencil skirt, this style is appropriate for any office. Wear a thin cardigan over a tee shirt for a more casual look. Paired with jeans and boots, this effect is perfect for an afternoon football game or shopping with friends.

Twin Set Cardigan.

The twin set sweater first gained popularity in the 1940s because of its versatility and ease of wear. It has remained popular through the years for those same reasons. A twin set sweater is comprised of a shell and sweater. The shell is usually either a tank top or a short-sleeved sweater in a lightweight fabric. The outer sweater is a cardigan with long sleeves. The outer sweater is worn open to reveal the matching shell. Traditionally, the shell and the outer sweater were made of the same color and material, giving it the name “twin set”. Over the years, the twin set has changed with the times. Twin sets range from tone-one-tone combinations to contrasting color combinations and combining prints and solids. Worn with a strand of pearls, the twin set is the epitome of a classic, timeless look. However, a twin set pairs just as easily with a pencil skirt at the office or with jeans for weekend activities.

Hoodie Cardigan.

A hoodie is the ultimate in casual comfort. Often made from heavy gauge yarn, a hoodie offers the convenience of a cardigan combined with the ease and warmth of a sweatshirt. Hoodies zip up in the front and sport a hood knit of the same material as the rest of the sweater. Paired with a tee shirt and jeans, a hoodie cardigan is a warm, stylish fashion choice.

Long Cardigan.

A long cardigan is a versatile choice for fall. These sweaters are fashioned in a variety of colors and a variety of weights. A long cardigan should fall halfway between the hip and knee. It looks best when it is paired with jeans, leggings, or other pants, due to its length. Worn over a tee shirt or other lightweight shell, the long cardigan is usually worn open. However, many long cardigans are cinched at the waist with a belt that is knitted from the same material as the sweater. Worn with a simple blouse, the belted, long cardigan provides a streamlined profile.

Swing-Style Cardigan.

The swing-style cardigan combines the comfort of a sweater with the clean lines of a jacket. Large buttons fasten the sweater at the neck, leaving the rest of the sweater open to reveal a complimentary shell. This delightful sweater can be worn with a pencil skirt for a business meeting. Dress it down with jeans for a pulled-together casual look.…

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The Antwerp Six, Ann Demeulemeester and Co – Where Are They Now?

The Antwerp Six, Ann Demeulemeester and Co – Where Are They Now?

In the late 80s, six friends from Antwerp’s then little known Royal Academy set out to take London by storm. They showed up at London Fashion Week with a rented truck filled with their “deconstructivist” samples, and, within days, had made their mark on the fashion world, securing a new international reputation for their school in the process. To this day, it continues to be known as one of the top schools for fashion. Since then, all six, including Dirk van Saene, Dirk Bikkembergs and Marina Yee have gone on to make names for themselves, although perhaps none more so than Walter Van Beirendonck, Ann Demeulemeester and Dries Van Noten.

Walter Van Beirendonck

– is head of the fashion department at the very school where he and fellow designers Ann Demeulemeester and Dries Van Noten first got their starts

– in the ’90s, he designed the clothing for the U2 Popmart Tour

– he also designs for the ballet, theatre and movies

Perhaps his biggest accomplishment: His Zulupapuwa line of clothing for children sold at the Belgian retail chain JBC. He somehow makes classic primary colours and the alphabet look edgy!

Ann Demeulemeester

– met with almost immediate success after that critical first London Fashion Week

– like her former classmate Walter, Ann Demeulemeester has forged connections with the music and art world

– her longtime muse, Patti Smith, has contributed original material to the soundtracks for Ann Demeulemeester’s fashion shows

– Karl Lagerfield once referred to Ann Demeulemeester as one of the most gifted young talents of her time

– Ann Demeulemeester is reportedly at work on a line inspired by artist Jackson Pollock

Interesting fact: Ann Demeulemeester lives in the only house in Belgium to have been designed by superstar architect Le Corbusier. Oh, and you may not have heard of Ann Demeulemeester, because she does not advertise.

Dries Van Noten

In a recent essay for the Wall Street Journal, Alison Gopnik writes that “for most of our history, children have started their internships when they were seven, not 27.” Dries Van Noten definitely belongs to the old school:

– Dries Van Noten comes from a long line of tailors

– Dries Van Noten’s grandfather reportedly introduced the city of Antwerp to the concept of buying clothing off the rack, i.e., ready to wear

– Dries Van Noten’s father ran a high-end clothing boutique in the ’70s

Like Walter Van Beirendonck and Ann Demeulemeester, Dries Van Noten has known enormous international success:

– Dries Van Noten has resisted moving to a city such as Paris, which is more of a fashion centre than Antwerp, because he enjoys the anonymity that living in a non fashion-oriented city grants him. If he lived in Paris, people might stop him on the streets. As it is, he made waves there this fashion week with his avant-garde peplum pants, a cerebral take on one of this spring’s hottest trends.

– In 2008, Dries Van Noten was named International Designer of the Year by an American fashion council.

The influence of Antwerp does not end with these designers. An Antwerp-based boutique called RA is currently the talk of the couture scene. The spirit of the Antwerp Six endures!…