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How to Find Work at London Fashion Week

Last updated March 19th, 2020

London Fashion Week is held in February of each year with the next one expected to be held on February 19th 2021. The date has yet to be confirmed but as this years’ show was held 14th – 18th February, it is likely to be around that date if not specifically on that date.

London Fashion Week is one of the highlights of the global fashion calendar and a must-see for movers and shakers in the industry and for those wanting to break into the world of fashion. Volunteering at London Fashion Week is incredibly competitive but could potentially be very rewarding!

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Where to find volunteering opportunities at London Fashion Week

As you would imagine, getting a position as a volunteer or intern at London Fashion Week is tough. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of people wanting the same thing. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t apply, far from it. What it means is that you’re going to have to work hard and work clever to secure your spot.

The first place to look is the London Fashion Week website. It doesn’t yet have the calendar for 2021 but it is updated regularly. If you’re interested in the industry, you probably already have the website saved as a bookmark anyway. If not, set it as one now and check it often.

As soon as the date for 2021 London Fashion Week is announced, make sure you’re free and begin trying to secure a position!

Other places to try if you want to volunteer for London Fashion Week include:

Indirect methods to volunteer at London Fashion Week

The many designers who show at London Fashion Week will have their own staff, including interns and volunteers. If contacting the organisers doesn’t work, you could try contacting designers directly. Some may already have their team already decided but not all of them will.

To help your search, designers are listed alphabetically on the London Fashion Week website. You could also search by designer name or filter by collection type. This is ideal if you have a specific area of fashion interest or expertise which you feel would make you a valuable addition to the team. It’s then a matter of making contact

This final way of volunteering at London Fashion Week may even be your best option if you’re more interested in roles supporting such events!

Supporting cast

If that doesn’t work, you could also try the many supporting cast members of the show.

Many of the supporting cast work with agencies and wider support networks within the fashion industry, including some of the designers. The photographers, caterers, makeup artists, hair stylists, sound engineers, videographers and the myriad of other teams behind the scenes that make London Fashion Week a success.

Researching this can involve a bit of an information trawl. Begin with those designer profiles on the London Fashion Week website. Some of these indicate which agencies represent the designers, giving you the next place to look.

With a little additional cross-checking on the agency information and preferred contact methods, it shouldn’t take too long to develop a short-list of supporters to contact.

What jobs could you be doing when volunteering at London Fashion Week?

The types of roles you could end up doing during your time at London Fashion Week will be decided entirely by who you volunteer with.

If you’re working with the organisers, you could be doing anything from meeting and greeting, handing out drinks, giving people directions, checking passes for VIP sections and all manner of activities.

If you work for a supporter, you could be doing much the same but in a smaller compound or area.

Working for a designer could involve anything from handling outfits, preparing outfits, fetching and carrying, waiting on VIPs, making sure models have everything they need to whatever the designer is likely to ask from you.

Working for someone in a support role can be equally varied and will depend entirely on their role at the show. Expect lots of fetching and carrying, communicating with organisers and generally trying to be helpful throughout the show.

How to get a volunteer position at London Fashion Week

We have outlined the where, now let’s look at the how. Given how competitive London Fashion Week is, you’re going to have to be on top form. Everyone even remotely interested in fashion is going to want a volunteer spot at London Fashion Week.

That means you have to compete with hundreds of other hopefuls and outshine them at every opportunity.

Preparation is key

Prepare everything in advance. Make sure your CV and portfolio are as good as they can be. Make sure you are free for the entire duration of London Fashion Week. Make sure you are prepared for some seriously long days.

Prepare any pitches or emails in advance and save them as draft. Check, double check and triple check your CV, covering letter, portfolio, website and any other material you will be using.

You want your first impression to be a good one so try to avoid any spelling and grammar errors wherever possible!

Make sure your CV covers achievements rather than just listing previous roles, mention any relevant qualification and make sure your CV is tuned to that specific type of role. If that means creating four or five CVs to cover every type of role you are prepared to volunteer for, that’s what it is going to take. The same for your covering letter.

Securing a volunteer position at London Fashion Week isn’t easy. If it was, everyone would do it. However, it should be a rewarding experience that will tell you if the industry is for you and provide essential industry contacts you can leverage at a later date to secure a paying job.

Good luck with it!

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