An average Fashion Designer in the United States can expect to take home roughly $62K annually. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by career length, followed by geography and the particular employer. While some workers in this profession — close to one-fourth — do not have any health coverage, a strong majority do receive medical benefits and the larger part have dental insurance. For the most part, Fashion Designers enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. Fashion Designers who responded to the questionnaire are largely women, dominating at 87 percent. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.
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$35,960 - $95,895
(Median)
$36K
$62K
$96K
MEDIAN: $61,634
10%
50%
90%

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$10.23 - $49.76
(Median)
$10
$20
$50
MEDIAN: $20
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$33K$66K$99K
Salary
$35,960 - $95,895  
   
Bonus
$598 - $10,304  
Profit Sharing
$300.00  
Commission
$9,887  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$33,159 - $98,141  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 798
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26$52$78
Hourly Rate
$10.23 - $49.76  
   
Hourly Tips
$6.00  
Overtime
$4.94 - $75.50  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$60K$120K$180K
Bonus
$598 - $10,304  
   
Commission
$9,887  
Profit Sharing
$300.00  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$33,159 - $98,141  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 154
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Job Description for Fashion Designer

A fashion designer creates designs for items like clothing, shoes, and accessories. Prior to creating a prototype, the designer will create a sketch of the clothing. Usually, this clothing concept will then be presented to management, who will approve the clothing so that a prototype can be created. The fashion designer will often be expected to have sewing skills, in order to create the first clothing example. When the design is handed over to a factory or other clothing producer, the designer must oversee the process to make sure that the clothing meets quality standards of the company.

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Fashion Designer Tasks

  • Develop design ideas based on targeted demographic and preferences of management or clients.
  • Supervise assistants creating patterns and producing samples of articles of clothing.
  • Follow fashion trends by researching customer preferences, attending fashion shows, and reading fashion publications.
  • Draw patterns and specifications for articles of clothing, determining factors such as design, colors, materials, and methods of production.
  • Promote designs by displaying samples of clothing at sales meetings and fashion shows.

Common Career Paths for Fashion Designer


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At the upper end, Fashion Designers who move into a Chief Fashion Designer role can end up with a hefty increase in pay. The average income for Chief Fashion Designers is a much higher $92K per year. A Senior Fashion Designer role is the most common promotion for Fashion Designers moving up the ladder, and pay for the position tends to be around the $89K mark. Another typical, albeit less common, transition for Fashion Designers is an Apparel Technical Designer position, where earnings are usually $53K.

Fashion Designer Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Fashion Designer


Fashion Designers seeking a sizable paycheck can earn the most at JCPenney, where the average salary comes to $82K.

Popular Skills for Fashion Designer


Fashion Designers seem to wield many skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Fabric/Textiles, Adobe InDesign, and Adobe Illustrator are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 24 percent, 10 percent, and 5 percent, respectively. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Microsoft Office, Merchandising, and Microsoft Outlook. Those proficient in Adobe Illustrator are, more often than not, also skilled in Adobe Photoshop.

Pay by Experience Level for Fashion Designer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Fashion Designers who reported more years of relevant experience also reported higher earnings. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $48K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $68K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Fashion Designers make a median salary of $78K. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't that much higher than less experienced individuals' earnings; the veterans make just $86K on average.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $60,484

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

With a pay rate for Fashion Designers that is 16 percent greater than the national average, Minneapolis offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Fashion Designers can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like New York (+15 percent), San Francisco (+9 percent), Philadelphia (+7 percent), and San Diego (+4 percent). One of the biggest compensable factors for Fashion Designers is geography, with workers in Miami earning a whopping 35 percent below the national average. Two other places where employers offer below-median salaries are Chicago (35 percent less) and Houston (27 percent less).

Fashion Designer Reviews

What is it like working as a Fashion Designer?

Fashion Designer in Baltimore:
"Accessories Designer."
Pros: I love the freedom I have as a designer and love the opportunities I have been given at Under Armour. I started as a graphic designer in 2011 at Under Armour, and since then have moved into a position as an Accessories Designer for the Women's team.
Cons: I currently am managing a ton of work and don't seem to be getting any help anytime soon. I also feel that I am not compensated for all of the hard work I do, also considering all of my organization skills and expertise.

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Experience Affects Fashion Designer Salaries




National Average
$60,000


Skills That Affect Fashion Designer Salaries

Fabric/Textiles
up arrow 24%



Adobe Photoshop
up arrow 4%

Computer Aided Design (CAD)
up arrow 4%

Design
up arrow 3%

Illustration
up arrow 2%

National Average
$60,000

Microsoft Excel
up arrow 1%

up arrow 6%


Product Development
up arrow 9%

Technical Garment Knowledge
up arrow 14%

Microsoft Outlook
up arrow 16%

Merchandising
up arrow 16%

Microsoft Office
up arrow 17%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 132 votes.

Gender

Female
87 %
Male
13 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
34%
5-9 years
34%
10-19 years
22%
20 years or more
6%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 73%
dental benefits
Dental: 56%
medical benefits
Vision: 45%
dental benefits
None: 26%
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