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10 Spring Fashion Trends You Need to Know

19 March 2015

Spring FashionThe end of winter and arrival of warmer weather means fashion shows across the world are bringing new creative spring trends to life. After all, it's time to put the cold gear aside and bring out your spring wardrobe.

As a student or ambitious professional in the fashion marketing field, being aware of the following 10 popular fashion trends for spring 2015 could help you attain the professional attention you desire this season.

1. Trouser Suit

Sophisticated yet casual, the trouser suit for spring 2015 sheds its traditional, stagnant look and takes on a stylish flair. Designers like Chanel have made sure this suit truly shimmers. It's a look that's elegant enough for a formal gathering, but light enough to wear to the coffee shop.

2. Pastel Outfit

It's been trending this way for several years. But wearing pastel colored dresses and suits this spring is essential, regardless of whether you'll be donning suede, cotton, or polyester. Think cooled-down purples, mustard yellows, and soft reds.

3. Baggy Trousers

Louis Vuitton is just one of the many designers to roll out high-waisted wide legged trousers with flared hems. It simply accentuates any figure nicely.

4. Crop Tops

Crop tops may have seemed to be going out of style, but they are clearly still a choice item in the fashion world, as evidenced at New York Fashion Week. The midriff-baring style can be worn with a variety of skirts, pants, or shorts, giving it incredible versatility.

5. White Outfit

In addition to colorful outfits, white outfits are also becoming incredibly popular this spring. White hats, suits, shoes, and dresses provide the crisp, cutting-edge appearance people want.

6. Shirt Dresses

Shirt dresses sound a lot tamer than what they are. However, fashion designers have given the shirt dress a fresh and bold appearance for 2015, with double high slits, drop waists, and many low-cut options. Look for it to be widely worn this spring and for years to come.

7. Denim Jeans

Denim is certain to be a common spring fashion sight in 2015, but it's much more than just the classic appearance. For spring 2015, flared jeans are in, while slim-cut are out. Additionally, embellished jeans, such as those offered by Dolce and Gabbana, are going to be seen a lot.

8. Bohemian Dress

While many fashion enthusiasts may be seen wearing less on the first day of spring, the Bohemian dress is a welcome alternative for those who want something classy and not as revealing. The long, floor-touching Bohemian dresses by Vera Wang and others are gorgeously colored and fit comfortably around the body.

9. Bermuda Shorts

Yes, these long-time favorites have returned. Why? Because Bermuda shorts pair wonderfully with a sweater and suit a range of activities -- from golfing to a cocktail party.

10. Statement Blazers

Gucci and other designers have begun to unveil statement blazers. Boldly and articulately designed, these blazers stand out with clean yet confident designs and a look that's certainly noticeable.

Interested in Fashion Marketing & Management? See what educational opportunities we have to offer!

The Art Institutes at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week

6 February 2015

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week prep

On February 17, 2015, 12 students and alumni from The Art Institutes system of schools, will debut their Fall/Winter 2015 collections at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Lincoln Center in NYC.

This is the 4th time that The Art Institutes has partnered with Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week to help our students and graduates shine on fashion’s biggest stage in front of celebrities, fashion elite, and potential employers.

Want to watch the event live?

Join us at on February 17 at 8PM EST.

Meet the Designers

Learn more about these designers, their creative process, and what inspired them to study fashion design in our exclusive Q&A sessions with each of these inspiring members of our community. Find them all here!

Where Wearable Tech Meets Fashion

18 November 2014

Wearable techTechnology and fashion are both huge industries, and designers from each sector are coming together to spark a revolution in the way we use technology. Wearable technology could change the lives of fashion-conscious people for the better, whether it's T-shirts that monitor your health or jewelry that lets you know when you have messages or calls waiting.

Wearable Tech at New York Fashion Week

Although wearable gadgets were once clunky and inelegant, the latest generation of wearable tech aims to look beautiful and perform flawlessly. In fact, wearable technology has so convincingly crossed over into fashion that several high-tech accessories were featured during the 2014 New York Fashion Week.

Designer Rebecca Minkoff was one of the big stars of Fashion Week, with her high-tech jewelry that delivers some real functionality, as well as beautiful design. For the fashionista who doesn’t want to take time out from socializing to reach into her bag and check her mobile phone, there's a gold bracelet that connects with the phone using Bluetooth and subtly delivers a notification whenever a call or text comes in.

Ralph Lauren smart T-shirts were also featured at New York Fashion Week. These biometric wearables use silver-coated threads to conduct electrical signals through the shirt, allowing them to measure your heart and respiration rates, as well as your movements as you walk, run or play sports.

Fitness-Tracking Fashion

Many fitness-related wearable gadgets, such as the Fitbit Flex, are already very popular among runners and sportspeople. Fitbit Flex is a wristband that monitors the steps you take and the calories you burn, and watches over you while you sleep to assess the quality of your nighttime rest. Their most well-known wristband looks very technological, with its bright colors and light-up display. However, with the right design input from fashion houses, fitness-tracking wearable tech could deliver the same functionality in a much more subtle and fashion-conscious way. With its line of Tory Burch bracelets and pendants, FitBit may already be leading the industry in that arena.

With fashion designers taking on the challenge of incorporating wearable tech into their existing lines, there's the potential for wearables to develop into clothes that look and feel as good as the tech that powers them functions.

Behind the Runway: The Business of Fashion Marketing

16 September 2014

Clothing on display

When it comes to careers in fashion, there are a myriad of choices for those who want to claim their place in the fashion scene without becoming designers. Whether the retail, media, or public relations aspects appeal to you, a career in fashion marketing can take you where you want to go. As a fashion marketer, you can take on a wide variety of duties related to branding, sales, promotions, customer relations and event planning. These careers are great for social butterflies who want to share their passion for the fashion industry with the world.

What is fashion marketing anyway?

As in any industry, marketing is key to the success of all fashion businesses. Both retail outlets and design houses hire marketing teams to manage their brands, plan events, set retail store layouts and work with customers. Being a fashion marketer is all about supporting the work of designers and fashion brands by showing the latest and greatest in fashion to consumers and retail stores.

Professionals who work in this field know how to conduct consumer research, measure the popularity of new trends, and design marketing campaigns that bring big results. Of course, not all fashion marketers work for huge design houses or major stores. Because marketing is essential at every level of the fashion industry, many people in this field also work for smaller boutiques and individual fashion designers.

Marketing career paths for fashion pros

One of the most exciting aspects of a marketing career is the multitude of options it affords. Instead of being confined to one type of job, fashion marketers can take on many different responsibilities. Picking an area of focus is all about deciding which of the following positions meet your talents, skills, and professional goals. Remember that the following are popular positions in the fashion field, but they're not the only careers in fashion marketing by a long shot!


Merchandise Coordinator. Merchandise coordinators are responsible for managing a brand's products in retail outlets. They may simply set up display designs and priorities to be shared with visual merchandisers in other stores, or they may be responsible for setting up displays on their own. Depending on the size of the company, merchandise coordinators may also be expected to do some online brand management such as social media marketing and photo uploads to company websites.

Retail Manager. Retail outlets make up the biggest sector in the fashion industry, and management jobs in such outlets tend to employ experienced fashion marketers. Those students who are just completing a fashion degree program may be prepared to enter the workforce as assistant managers while those with more on-the-ground experience may be able to win store or regional management positions. These professionals are responsible for overseeing every aspect of a retail store's operations from merchandising to staffing to brand management.

Buyer. No matter the size of the retail outlet, fashion businesses rely on buyers to hunt down the season's latest trends, negotiate purchase prices, and choose merchandise for a store. Large retail outlets generally have a team of buyers, and each buyer may be responsible only for certain items. For instance, there may be separate buyers for women's wear, men's wear, and accessories. Smaller retail outlets generally employ only one buyer or require managers to handle buyer duties. Buyers are responsible for not only understanding current trends but also for introducing them to consumers.

Sales and Events Promoter. Special events and sales provide a key way for businesses to get the word out about breaking trends and attract new consumers. While some fashion companies may use a freelance event planner to manage events, others prefer to hire professionals who have industry-specific experience.

Merchandise Planner. Also known as visual planners or visual merchandisers, merchandise planners are responsible for designing displays in retail stores. They decide how clothing and accessories will be displayed on tables, stands and racks. Depending on where they work, merchandise planners may also be responsible for ensuring that their store is following any company-wide visual display standards or planograms.

Media Planner/Buyer. Digital and online marketing are just as important to today's fashion businesses as in-person marketing is in retail stores. Media planners and buyers are responsible for designing a media marketing program and buying space in print publications, online outlets and on other media such as billboards in order to advertise or promote a company’s products. Professionals in these roles are responsible both for planning and budgeting, so a solid understanding of business finance is key.

Is a fashion marketing career right for you?

Marketing careers offer one of the most promising means of entering the fashion industry. Thanks to the many different hats that fashion marketers can wear, both new and seasoned professionals can pursue a wide variety of job roles that meet their educational accomplishments and personal preferences.

If you're considering a career as a fashion marketer, remember that it's essential that you enjoy working with people. You'll spend a great deal of time interacting with company leaders, fashion industry insiders and consumers as you plan, launch, and manage marketing campaigns.

Careers in marketing are also desirable for those who want to eventually own their own fashion businesses. A solid foundation in marketing provides the knowledge needed to launch a brand or consulting service. Learn more about fashion marketing and the programs available in this area today!

What’s New at The Art Institutes

8 September 2014

AiMBFW banner

Students & Grads Debut Their Collections at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week

Imagine you're an aspiring fashion designer. You've worked for months creating your very own collection and you're ready to reveal it on the runway. Now imagine that runway is at New York City's world renowned Lincoln Center, and the show is Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week - NYC's biggest media event. This dream will turn into reality for 13 students and graduates of The Art Institute of New York City on Tuesday, September 9, 2014.

With guidance from our experienced faculty, they created world-class collections, and our partnership with Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week will give them the chance to unveil their work on an international stage. We invite you to meet these students and alumni and to join us as they debut their lines.

Watch the live show here on Tuesday, September 9 at 8pm EST and join the conversation on Twitter and Facebook with #AiMBFW.

GETCreative Courses Introduced for Adults and Teens

GETCreative logo
The Art Institute of Pittsburgh and The Art Institute of California—San Diego, a campus of Argosy University, invite teens and adults to take their creative talents to the next level through our GETCreative courses, workshops, and special events.

Participants may choose from a variety of courses designed for the pursuit of casual recreational learning or professional development designed for adults in creative careers. The classes take place in our professional kitchens, studios, and labs—providing hands-on training on industry standard tools and technology.

Creative writing workshops, an introduction to digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) photography, garment construction classes, comic book art drawing, game design workshops, and a day in the sushi kitchen are examples of the creative outlets GETCreative provides. Classes begin this month and are offered in the following areas:

- Art Foundations
- Culinary Arts
- Recording Arts
- Creative Writing
- Design
- Photography
- Textiles
- Fashion and Jewelry
- The Business of Art
- Software for Designers

Classes meet for as few as one—or as many as six—sessions.

“Our seasoned instructors guide students to challenge their creativity in a relaxed environment.” said George Sebolt, president of The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. “Teens can test out possible career paths while still in high school, and seasoned professionals can gain skills to help them advance in the creative marketplace.”

For more information about GETCreative, to see a list of courses, or to register for classes, please visit or

10 Names Everyone in Fashion is Expected to Know

10 June 2014

fashion designers

Want to carve out your place in the fashion industry? The history of fashion design is filled with brave entrepreneurs and artistic trailblazers who defined the styles that surround us today—and as someone with a passion for the field, you’ll be expected to know the clothing and history of these important fashion designers. Remember, their names are more than labels or brands; they are legacies of determination and creativity.

1. Elsa Schiaparelli

This Italian designer found much of her inspiration from the Surrealism and Dada art movements. A rival of Coco Chanel, Schiaparelli is known for the avant-garde creativity in her designs, which included such oddities as a lobster dress and shoe hat.

2. Pierre Cardin

Cardin's highly original style centered around geometry, and he's attributed with creating the modern bubble dress. He later developed one of the first package trims available in American cars with the AMC Javelin's colorful interior.

3. Coco Chanel

One of the most prolific and influential fashion designers of all time, Chanel rose to fame in the 1920s with her innovative use of jersey fabric and the development of every woman's wardrobe staple: the little black dress.

4. Yves St. Laurent

This legendary designer is best known for creating the first French ready-to-wear line, as well as developing menswear styles for women, such as the innovative and renowned "Le Smoking" suit.

5. Hubert de Givenchy

Givenchy worked alongside designers Schiaparelli, Christian Dior, John Galliano and Alexander McQueen while dressing icons such as Grace Kelly. Most notably, he designed almost all of Audrey Hepburn's classic movie wardrobes.

6. Azzedine Alaïa

When Cher from Clueless insists that she can't ruin her dress by lying on the street during a robbery, she gives one reason: "It's an Alaïa." This elusive Tunisian fashion designer is known for dressing an array of celebrities while never selling out in his marketing.

7. Vivienne Westwood

Westwood began her career working for Malcolm McLaren of the Sex Pistols, and her contributions to punk fashion and new wave street style are unrivaled. Carrie Bradshaw's Vivienne Westwood wedding dress in the Sex and the City movie is considered one of the show's most notable designs.

8. Miuccia Prada

The founder of both Prada and Miu Miu, this legendary Italian designer is known for her minimalist and comfortable styles, with Miu Miu a more affordable take on her personal wardrobe.

9. Valentino Garavani

The man behind the Valentino label has designed for a collection of starlets and socialites such as Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, and Lee Radziwill. Jackie Kennedy's gown for her wedding to Aristotle Onassis was a Valentino original, and he's well known for his vibrantly colored "Valentino red" dresses.

10. Paul Poiret

Poiret is credited with introducing the draping technique to fashion, thus giving women an alternative to corsets and launching the modern aesthetic still seen today in fashion marketing and sales.

Interested in fashion design or fashion marketing? Learn more about our programs today!

3 Proven Sales Techniques in Fashion Marketing

30 May 2014

Fashion display

You (or your company) may have found the hottest fashion line in existence, but now you need to get it in the hands of consumers. Start by developing a sales and marketing plan with fashion marketing strategies and tactics that ensure that you get the attention of shoppers and stores worldwide.

1. Think about the whole picture

Keep the store flow in mind. Every retail store owner has a specific store flow that they use to direct customers around their location. The store layout utilizes racks, end caps, window displays, and other arrangements to show off the merchandise in a way that's accessible and desirable. Visualize what the clothing you're marketing will look like in each prime store flow location, so you can describe to the store owner exactly how well your fashion fits into their store vision. You want the store owner to realize that you know about their side of things as well and can help them make more sales.

2. Get social

Create a fashion marketing platform using social media and social networking. When you show that you already have popularity, you create a demand for your fashion designs. Whether your pieces are in front of millions on high end fashion blogs or you have a thousand dedicated fans following your or Instagram account or Tumblr, showing that people want your clothes helps business owners make their purchasing decisions. Sites such as Pinterest are particularly useful for fashion marketing, especially if you catch the ear of some of the most active pinners on the site. The visual-based medium of this site is also helpful for showing off your clothing properly, and most sites allow users to easily share content from Pinterest so it's much easier to get a viral reach throughout the Internet.

3. Put people in your clothes

Set brand ambassadors forth in the world. A brand ambassador wears your clothing and talks up your product to their peer group. You want brand ambassadors who will give your products a good reputation, so make sure that you screen potential ambassadors so you aren't on the receiving end of an embarrassing viral video campaign that shows them behaving badly. Not all press is good press, contrary to popular opinion.

Read More:

5 Things Store Owners & Entrepreneurial Fashion Designers Should Know about Visual Merchandising

11 April 2014


You pored over the clothing and accessory inventory selection for your store, but it's not flying off the shelves like you expected. Visual merchandising is the art and science of displaying your products, from the window displays that get people into your store to the floor plan that keeps them moving around.

Your potential customers quickly form their first impressions of your store primarily based on the visual input they receive. Effective visual merchandising is just as important to your store's success as the inventory itself. Here are a few visual merchandising tips to help your fashion design sensibilities get a business minded focus.

1. Start with a store-wide view

You want a cohesive theme among all of your store displays, so starting with an overall view of your retail floor space helps bring together. In addition, starting with the floor plan allows you to avoid creating displays that are too big for the available space or detract from the store atmosphere.

2. Show an accurate representation

In fashion design, you want your clothes to look as good as they possibly can when the model wears them on the cat walk. The same concept carries over to your store. Select displays that help your customers visualize what the clothes look like on them before they head to the dressing room.

3. Consider ease of access

Balance your floor plan between getting as much merchandise as possible on the floor and making it easy to access everything. You don't want any clothing to be difficult to see or reach, as this drives the customers away from a purchase. When you overload your store with merchandise, you run the risk of your displays being too busy and pulling the customer's attention in too many different directions, resulting in an overwhelming amount of choices.

4. Make sure your store windows impress

Your window displays are the first impression the customer has of you. You want a range of products that shows off exactly what you have to offer. You're not simply putting your best-selling clothes on mannequins and calling it good. You want to tell a story and show the style and theme of your store.

5. Optimize lighting

Your lighting sets the mood and atmosphere of the store. The overall lighting level should be bright enough to clearly see the products, pricing, signs, floor path and other aspects of your store. Use spotlights and track lights to add emphasis to specific products and product displays. Good lighting does more than simply illuminate. It plays off of the texture and features of your clothing, bringing out their best attributes for the customers' eyes.

Interested in a career in fashion design or retail management? Explore our programs today!

Read More

- Silent Selling: Visual Merchandising for Small Retailers
- Visual Merchandising: Back to the Basics with Best Practices 
- The Effect of Visual Merchandising on Fashion Stores

Women Who Changed the World of Fashion Design

4 March 2014

Women in Fashion Design

March is Women's History Month, and that calls for a piece on influential women who changed fashion design. Take a look at four of the great fashion designers and businesswomen who blazed new paths in the industry with their unique, fresh, and exciting views on style and elegance.

Coco Chanel

With the most recognizable name in French fashion design and possibly the entire world, Coco Chanel transformed clothing and style forever. In many senses, she freed women from the uncomfortable fashion trends of the early 20th century. Her influential, classic creations included pieces like trousers and suits for women, as well as the little black dress. Even suntanning became a style trend influenced by her own stunning outfits paired with a tanned complexion she gained accidentally while on vacation. Her branded perfume, Chanel No.5, is perhaps the most coveted fragrance in the world.

Vera Wang

Vera Wang's influence as a business owner and American fashion designer comes in her ability to cross generations and cultures. When she couldn't find a suitable wedding dress, she decided to build her own. From there, the Vera Wang brand took off. Best known for her haute couture bridesmaid dresses and wedding gowns, Vera Wang has also expanded her clothing line to include women's wear and fragrances. She often experiments with more daring designs, including a black wedding dress. Her retail products touch a wide range of ages, classes, and cultures, helping her to earn a spot as a legend within the industry.

Vivienne Westwood

Vivienne Westwood is often called the "Goddess of Punk" in the fashion design industry. Her insistence on freedom of expression and her unique style have made her vastly important to the field. In 1971, the doors to her first store, Let It Rock, flung open and her brand has never looked back. She has done everything from dressed the Sex Pistols to started a menswear clothing line in Florence. Her clothing perfectly meshes the cutting edge with tradition - an area in which few others have enjoyed such widespread success.

Miuccia Prada

The Queen of Handbags, Miuccia Prada has an impressive story that made her all the more influential in the fashion world. This former member of the Italian Communist Party assumed control of her father's luggage company in 1978 and quickly breathed life into the dying brand with energetic creations. Prada's determination to make things completely her own enabled her to become a distinguished figure in fashion design. Leading with her will and confidence, she possesses a style and innovative flair that helped her and her products gain worldwide recognition, adoration, and respect. The brand produces fashion products that are a dynamic and trendsetting blend of femininity, aesthetics, and originality.

Interested in a career in fashion design? Learn how to get started here!

13 Art Institute Students & Grads to Show at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week

8 February 2014

At The Art Institute of Pittsburgh – Online Division, we’re proud to be a member of The Art Institutes system of schools! Across the country, many Art Institutes students and alumni are shaping the future of the creative arts industries, including the world of fashion design.

Design by Rie Yamamoto

On February 11, 2014, thirteen Fashion Design students and graduates of the Art Institutes will show their collections on the runway at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. At 8pm EST on the night of the show, you can watch a live stream of the runway show! 

For these students, the journey began by submitting sketches, inspiration boards, and a minimum of two garments to industry experts, including fashion designers and student selection committee judges.

In the months that followed, faculty and staff worked with and mentored them on their collections, as finished garments were submitted at regular intervals for lively discussion.

(This image shows a design by Rie Yamamoto, 2013 Graduate, Bachelor of Fine Arts, Fashion Design, The Art Institute of California—San Francisco, a campus of Argosy University.)

Learn more here about these designers and their collections to be shown at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week!

Looking at degree programs and schools for fashion design? Find a Fashion Design program near you, or check out The Art Institute of Pittsburgh – Online Division’s Bachelor of Science degree program in Fashion & Retail Management.