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The Fashion Industry and Its Key Sectors
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The Fashion Industry and Its Key Sectors

The Fashion Industry is a multi-billion-dollar multinational organization committed to producing and selling clothing. Some people differentiate between the fashion industry (which produces “high fashion”) and the garment industry (which produces ordinary clothing or “mass fashion”). Still, the distinctions between them were blurred by the 1970s. Fashion is best identified simply as the style or clothing style sold in the world’s malls and markets. The fashion industry, however, involves the design, manufacture, production, marketing, retailing, advertisement, and promotion of all kinds of clothing, from the most rarefied and costly haute couture and designer fashions to ordinary daily clothing, from couture ball gowns to sweet casual clothing.

Key Sectors of The Fashion Industry

Textile Design and Production


This is the First Key Sector of the Fashion Industry. Textile Design and Production, the bulk of fashions are made of textiles. One of the first achievements of the Industrial Revolution in the 18th century was the partial automation of the spinning and weaving of wool, cotton, and other natural fibers. These processes are highly automated and performed by computer-controlled high-speed machines in the 21st century. In the textile industry, a broad sector manufactures fabrics for use In apparel for use. Natural fibers (such as wool, cotton, silk, and linen) are used as well as synthetic fibers (such as nylon, acrylic, and polyester). Increasing interest in sustainable fashion (or ‘eco-fashion’) has led to increased use of eco-friendly fibers, such as cannabis. High-tech synthetic fabrics confer properties such as wicking moisture (e.g., Coolmax), resistance to staining (e.g., 303 High)


High-tech synthetic fabrics confer such properties as moisture-wicking (e.g., Coolmax), stain resistance (e.g., 303 High Tech Fabric Guard), retention or dissipation of body heat, and protection against fire, weapons (e.g., Kevlar), cold (e.g., Thinsulate), ultraviolet radiation (Solarweave), and other hazards. Fabrics are produced with a wide range of effects through dyeing, weaving, printing, and other manufacturing and finishing processes. Together with fashion forecasters, textile manufacturers work well in advance of the apparel production cycle to create fabrics with colors, textures, and other qualities that anticipate consumer demand.

Fashion Design and Manufacturing


This is the second Key Sector of the Fashion Industry. Historically, very few fashion designers have become famous “name” designers, such as Coco Chanel or Calvin Klein. They create prestigious high-fashion collections, whether couture or prêt-á-porter (“ready-to-wear”). These designers are influential in setting trends in fashion, but contrary to popular belief, they do not dictate new styles; instead, they endeavor to design clothes that will meet consumer demand. The vast majority of designers work anonymously for manufacturers as part of design teams, adapting trendsetting styles into marketable garments for average consumers. Designers draw inspiration from a wide range of sources, including film and television costumes, street styles, and active sportswear. For most designers, traditional design methods have been supplemented or replaced by computer-assisted design techniques, such as sketching on paper and draping fabric on mannequins. These allow designers to rapidly make changes to a proposed design’s silhouette, fabric, trimmings, and other elements and will enable them to instantly share the proposed changes with colleagues—whether in the next room or on another continent.\

Fashion Retailing, Marketing, and Merchandising


This is the third Key Factor in the Fashion Industry Retailing, promotion, and merchandising of apparel. They need to be sold once the clothes have been produced and manufactured. But how is it possible to bring clothes from the supplier to the customer? It is known as retail, the business of purchasing clothes from suppliers and selling them to consumers. Retailers make initial sales for resale three to six months before the consumer can buy the clothes.


Fashion Marketing: Fashion Marketing is managing the flow of merchandise, from the initial selection of designs to be produced to the presentation of products to retail customers, to maximize a company’s sales and profitability. Successful fashion marketing depends on understanding consumer desire and responding with appropriate products. Marketers use sales tracking data, attention to media coverage, focus groups, and other means of ascertaining consumer preferences to provide feedback to designers and manufacturers about the type and quantity of goods to be produced.


Fashion Retail: Marketing operates at both the wholesale and retail levels. Companies that do not sell their own products at retail must place those products at wholesale prices in the hands of retailers, such as boutiques, department stores, and online sales companies. They use fashion shows, catalogs, and a sales force armed with sample products to find a close fit between the manufacturer’s products and the retailer’s customers. Marketers for companies selling their products at retail are primarily concerned with matching products to their customer base. At both the wholesale and retail levels, marketing also involves promotional activities such as print and other media advertising to establish brand recognition and reputation for diverse characteristics such as quality, low price, or trendiness.

Media And Marketing


Last but not least, this is the last Key Sector of the Fashion Industry Media of all kinds are essential to fashion marketing. The first dedicated fashion magazines appeared in England and France in the late 18th century. In the 19th century, fashion magazines increased and flourished. Featuring articles, hand-colored illustrations (known as fashion plates), and advertisements, fashion magazines—together with other developments such as the sewing machine, department stores, and ready-to-wear clothing produced in standard sizes—played a significant role in promoting the democratization of fashion in the modern era. The development of effective and inexpensive methods of reproducing photographs in print media in the early 20th century led to the rise of fashion photography and heavily illustrated fashion magazines such as Vogue. Magazine advertising rapidly became a principal marketing tool for the fashion industry.