Our apparel client is looking for a contract Apparel Designer to join their team on contract and work closely with Design Director and Merchandiser(s) to design and merchandise an apparel line for assigned categories and projects. Initiates and interprets new product concepts to meet the needs of our consumers, resulting in sales and growth for the company. Presents design concepts including fabrication, style definition, color and features for review by the product creation team. Manages design projects and works with team members to ensure that deadlines are met to reach Company goals.
Researches worldwide marketplace and interprets consumer and market needs as they relate to product category(s). Includes researching fabric, color, and design concepts and collecting feedback from customers and sales representatives. May attends selected trade shows for market research to gain thorough understanding of customer/product requirements. Travels for consumer/product research as approved by Design Directors.
Proposes design ideas based on seasonal assignments with regard to fabrication, style definition, functional features, fit requirements and design details. Refine concepts as directed by Design Director. Works within target prices as much as possible; coordinates efforts with Production/Sourcing to assure most effective results.
Provides sketches and line art to communicate design concepts, including multiple views and detail sketches as necessary. Provides design/concept boards to communicate design and color direction.
Works closely with Materials Research to define new areas to research and source. Identifies fabrics, trims, and garment components as needed on a seasonal basis. Researches and proposes trims, graphic applications, prints and/or patterns if applicable, and labels designs by working closely with Product Development and/or Graphics Designer(s). Communicates fabric and trims information to team members.
Participates in prototype process for assigned category(s). Includes initiating sample requests by working closely with Associate Designer and Product Developer(s), reviewing samples and directing revisions as needed throughout the development cycle. Attends fit sessions and categorical team meetings as needed to facilitate process, revisions, and finalization of products.
Proposes color palette for assigned category(s) and participate in color process, including defining lab dip needs and color-way development on a style-by-style basis. Works as a team member in identifying general color direction on a seasonal basis. Works to ensure all color requirements are met on a timely basis.
Develops open line of communication to all merchandising areas within the company. Interacts with Sales and Marketing to understand product/consumer needs and works to initiate communication techniques that can educate retailers and consumers.
Facilitates inter/intra-departmental communication and teamwork as needed to assure timelines are met and to assure critical merchandising information is available to Design, Merchandising, Product Development, Graphics, Production/Sourcing, and Sales personnel.
Participates in design reviews and other meetings as needed. As requested, presents category products and design/merchandising information during key meetings and line presentations.
Performs related administrative and design tasks as needed.
Provides backup support for Associate Designer(s) on rush projects, projects requiring CAD skills and assignments that cannot be completed by other staff members.
REQUIRED SKILLS & Experience
- One to two years garment design/development experience in the apparel industry. Experience with outdoor industry and apparel category preferred.
- Possess thorough knowledge of apparel design and development; merchandising procedures, product materials, and production techniques.
- Knowledge of computer design software as well as the talent and ability to perform free hand drawings.
- Possess well-developed ability to read, write and speak English.
- Ability to work in a demanding, fast paced environment, with a high level of adaptability. Some pressure may exist when facing deadlines.
- Mental ability to conduct complex interpersonal interactions with employees and customers, troubleshoot, design, coordinate and perform special task/projects simultaneously, make decisions, operate independently and with discretion, and work effectively under pressure.
Must have excellent eyesight, including strong sense of color.