Fashion merchandising combines an overview of fashion trends with a strong understanding of business principles so merchandisers would be able to buy and sell garments in today's global market. The curriculum for fashion merchandising students includes instruction in retail management, accounting, apparel construction, fashion buying, visual merchandising, marketing principles, and mass merchandising. There are also specialized areas of interest such as fashion marketing, design and promotions, and product development. Working in a retail store is recommended for added experience.
Students learn how to market, display, sell, and buy fashion goods and textiles. Students also learn how to select visually pleasing apparel, create the overall ambiance of a store, supervise sales, and oversee production costs. Fashions are not only marketed to retail stores, but to wholesalers and boutiques. Popular career options include fashion buyer, fashion director, fashion editor, retail manager, textile merchandiser, and fashion designer. Fashion trends are constantly changing, so students must be prepared to keep up with the latest looks and be able to predict future styles.
The average salary for those with careers in the fashion merchandising industry was $47,000 in January 2011. However, salaries can be higher in major fashion cities like New York.