Illustration on the profession of textile designer

Become a Textile designer

How to become a textile designer?

This is a still little-known profession, which is often confused with that of stylist.

The textile designer intervenes before the creative tasks of the stylist. His job consists of studying and analyzing market trends in order to create precise specifications. It helps the stylist in the creation phases by offering patterns, colors and fabrics. Sometimes, he can even create and visualize the stylist's creations using computer tools.

What are the conditions for becoming a textile designer?

The job of a textile designer involves creating fabrics and designs that can be used for a variety of products such as clothing, furnishings, accessories, wallpaper, stationery and tableware. They can work as freelancers, within a design studio or directly for a couture brand. In all cases, the textile designer must integrate the demands of his client and market trends.

In order to carry out his creative task, the textile designer must carry out significant monitoring work on products, processes and competition. It must also absorb artistic and consumer trends, new materials and technological processes. Additionally, it must analyze the results of previous collections to know what worked and what didn't. In addition to research and creation, the textile designer may also be in charge of implementing, managing and monitoring the manufacturing of textile collections. He may be responsible for drafting specifications, validating and launching prototypes, presenting products in specialized trade fairs and showrooms, etc.

The textile designer must have a developed aesthetic sense, but also master CAD or CAD tools, manufacturing processes, and the specificities and characteristics of textile materials. He also needs communication and marketing skills, as well as experience working in project mode and mastering one or more languages.

What training is recommended to become a textile designer?

The world of fashion is an environment often considered very closed, and as creative and original as it may be, the textile designer must also be able to demonstrate training related to the position for which he is applying. There are training courses at all levels for this textile design professional. With a CAP applied arts or even a BEP in soft materials, short training courses can represent a first step for candidates. There is also a BEP Made-to-measure clothing and accessories, which can open the door to this type of profession.

Although short studies exist, it is nevertheless strongly recommended to continue up to an artistic baccalaureate or a STD2A technological baccalaureate with the applied arts option or even the creation of tailor-made clothing. The professional arts and crafts baccalaureate, fashion accessories series, is another possibility.

To become a textile designer, it will be appropriate, in the vast majority of cases, to continue studies after obtaining the baccalaureate. The main routes remain:

The qualities required of the textile designer

The textile designer must possess certain qualities:

A profession that is practiced a lot on a freelance basis

If you want to become a freelance textile designer, it is important to choose a legal status. One of the simplest is the self-employed status, which offers an advantageous tax rate and little paperwork. In addition, you will not have to worry about the VAT to be applied on the amounts invoiced. The emergence of this status partly explains the great success of marketplaces specializing in the sale of textile designs, of which French Design is one.

If you prefer to start out as a business manager, two other options are possible: the sole proprietorship (EI) and the sole proprietorship with limited liability (EIRL). Although social security contributions are higher, these statuses open the door to higher turnover. Finally, salary portage is a third interesting possibility, because it gives the right to the same rights as employees (unemployment, sick leave, retirement, etc.) and allows you to not have to deal with administrative procedures.

Whatever status you choose, this will allow you to be considered as a service provider and to concentrate on the essential aspects of your activity: the development of your market, customer canvassing and graphic creation.

Can you make a living from your passion for textile design?

Textile design is a very competitive profession that attracts more and more freelancers. Those who choose this method of working have the opportunity to work at their own pace and choose the type of project they wish to carry out. Depending on their experience, negotiations and the project, their salary can range from 1400 to 2000 euros per month. Beginners can expect to earn an average salary of 1430 euros.

Job opportunities in freelance textile design include graphic design services and client canvassing. To find missions, freelancers must maintain their network and register on generic platforms such as, or Malt. However in France, nothing replaces the number 1 specialized platform in its field: Textile Addict Freelance. Then, with experience, they can qualify for positions as team leader or chief designer.

Working from home or in a coworking space is a good option for those who want to get into textile design. With the flexibility offered by this type of work, it is possible to work as much as necessary to earn more or take a week off to rest. In addition, the market for fashion and the creation of furnishing fabrics is in constant demand for originality and freshness.