What a match!

The lowdown

An accessory designer creates and develop concepts of accessories with clothing. Accessories can include, but are not limited to, hats, belts, watches, scarves, necklaces and earrings. Designing corporate spaces, kitchenware and furniture also qualify as accessory design. Creativity plays a very important role where design is concerned. A designer must be sensible to detail and have good presentation and conceptualisation skills as design is an expression of what one thinks, feels and experiences. Also, he/she must be observant and understand the customers’ needs. Last but not least, this profession does not have any boundaries as long as you have the talent. Thus, if you’re ready to learn and relearn with every new project, there is no better profession than this. Since there are hundreds of brands fighting for shelf space, an accessory designer has to keep evolving. The demand for accessory designers will keep growing as India’s retail sector, which is estimated at around US$450 billion, is growing by the day.

Clockwork
8am: Exercise and meditate
9.30am: Start the day in office
10am: Meet with the client; understand his /her product requirements or read the emails for brief
12.30pm: Lunch
1.30pm: Restart the session by researching on the specifications outlined by the client
4pm: Break
5.30pm: Complete the assigned work
6.30pm: Leave for home

After a few years in the field, working hours become quite flexible which means that a day for a designer may end early or hours could be extended as per the need

The payoff
A fresh graduate can expect anywhere between Rs. 15,000 to Rs. 40,000 a month. The pay increases as you gain experience and confidence. It depends on the company you work for and the acceptability of your design too

Skills/TRAITS
* Creative, artistic, ability to shock or awe 
* Flexibility to adapt to the global scenario
* Ability to connect with people and understand their requirements
* One should be able to think from the customers’ perspective 
* Should have great design skills 
* Some marketing and entrepreneurial skills in case you want to launch your own designs 
* To be able to think out of the box
* Able to conceptualise innovative product designs

Getting there
After Class 12, opt for a professional course in designing to understand the nuances of the course, and get better insight into the industry

Institutes and URLs
* National Institute of Fashion Technology, New Delhi www.nift.ac.in
* National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad             www.nid.edu
* College of Art, New Delhi             www.delhi.gov.in/wps/wcm/connect/Lib_Collegeofart/collegeofarts/home
* Pearl Academy of Fashion, New Delhi                                     www.pearlacademy.com
 
Pros and cons
* Immense creative satisfaction
* People recognise you for work
* Get to work with different people, from those in the corporate world to karigars
* The job could be demanding at times and there could be no routine as such to follow
* It might take time to convince the client on a particular design or concept you believe in

Accessory designing is not just limited to bags, belts etc. There is immense scope in designing accessories for homes, offices  and luxury hotels as well -- Ambar Padiddi Sahai, member of the Fashion Design Council of India

 

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