What is a Fashion Design Brief?
A fashion design brief is a document where you, as a fashion designer, can present your best work to secure those dream clients. Look at it like a presentation and an opportunity to share your ideas and solutions for the client’s needs.
Within the fashion industry, there is plenty of competition that you'll be strutting up against. That means you need to stand out with every project idea that you have and for every client you present to.
For all of your future projects, a fashion design brief outlines all of the details that a client is after.
Doing research on the client shows you’re more than just a designer and creative. After all, you want to be a triple-thread, right? A fashion design brief should answer the questions the client needs answering when it comes to your project ideas. It should also share your own ideas of how to improve something that the client might be missing or that’s not even on their radar.
With the fashion industry worth over $759.5 billion on the eCommerce market–with predictions aiming for $1.002 trillion by 2025–there is space for every freelance fashion designer to make a name for themselves in this industry. Who knows, maybe you’ll be the next Anna Wintour or Karl Lagerfeld?
Note: Create your own fashion design brief today by downloading Bonsai’s free fashion design brief template. Sign up to the platform today to see Bonsai’s range of contracts, proposals, and templates galore.
What to Include in the Fashion Design Brief
It’s important to make sure you’re hitting the mark when it comes to your fashion design briefs, which is why having a design brief template to work from is key.
There are a number of things that you’ll want to include in this brief to help seal the deal with any of your future clients.
Why the client should choose you
With plenty of fashion designers out there already, it can be tough competition to show the client that you’re the designer for the project. Consider why the client should pick you over other designers.
What skills or experience do you have that no one else would have? It might be that you provide ideas and inspirations that are out of the box. When clients see something unusual or that hasn’t been done before, their interest will likely be piqued.
Putting yourself in the client’s shoes is going to help you see it from their perspective and what they may be after when it comes to hiring a designer for their projects.
Identify any problems and find solutions
Being a problem solver is great for any client who might be struggling with a problem they’ve yet to resolve. As a freelancer, it’s your opportunity to come in from an external point of view and to offer your support and guidance.
Identify any problems that your potential clients have and use your services as part of the solution. When you write a fashion design brief, it should leave the client with no further questions or queries. With that said, try and pick apart your design brief to make sure it clarifies everything you’re suggesting or hoping to deliver.
The key is in the detail
Details are important so every part of your brief needs to include your intentions. Make sure you’ve covered the budget and resources you’ll require for the project.
The more accurate you can be with your timeline and goals that you’re intending to achieve, the easier it will be to win over those tough clients. However, make sure that when you’re setting these business goals, you have the ability to do so. Don’t provide false hopes or promises!
You want to go over your design process and to ensure all the questions asked have been answered.
Summarize all of the essentials
At the end of the document, there should be a brief summary that makes clear all of the key points you’ve made in the brief. There might be a final product that you’re delivering so make sure to make this all clear as you finish the document.
Every part of the brief is important but it’s good to have a summary that can round up your process. There may be clients that are too busy to read every design brief in detail and so having those key points at the end, may be the difference between your brief being seen and it fading into the background.
In a freelance position, you’ll be doing most of the chasing, so don’t just wait around for the business and person you’re talking to, to get back to you. Continue to monitor and follow up on your brief with confidence.
How to Create a Fashion Design Brief
Creating a fashion design brief is easy when you know what’s required of you. That’s why templates are important to have, they can help you define and follow a structure. That way your writing isn’t going to be disjointed or confuse the client.
So how do you create a fashion design brief that slays every single time? Here are some helpful tips to create a jaw-dropping brief.
What does your client need?
Tailor your fashion design briefs to the client specifically. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution for this part of your template. Just like a resume, if you tailor each one, along with the cover letter to the business, you’re more likely to find clients falling at your Louboutin-clad feet.
Do some research on the client and set up communication with the client on what they’re looking for from you as a freelance creative. This is what will make up the majority of your design brief, so you want to have all the information available to you before you create the document.
Showcase what makes you different from other designers
There are other designers that you’ll likely be going up against at many different points in your career. It’s essential that you’re showcasing what makes you different and highlight what will help you stand out from the crowd.
As you develop your design brief, think about what you can show as an example of your work or previous experience. Client testimonials are great to help you showcase your reliability. If this is one of your first design briefs ever as a designer, then don’t be afraid to put forward a creative idea or two, despite it not being something that’s already happened for you.
Provide a list of objectives and details of your process
Your deliverables are essential to the brief and so these need to be completely clear and concise. Think about the budget you’ll require and the process of the design project from start to finish.
Leave no piece of cloth unturned when it comes to explaining to the business what your objectives are, and how you’ll deliver those objectives beautifully and effectively.
Bonsai top tip: Develop this section as best as you can before you submit the brief to the business in mind. Make it interesting by including images where applicable and show off your design skills where you can.
Customize your fashion design brief template so that it stands out from others your client may have received previously. As designers, design is in the word, so you don’t want it to look boring in its appearance.
Use high-quality images
In fashion, you very much need to walk the talk—prospects are interested in past garments you’ve created. While the proposal is where you really push your designs, you’ll also want to include some past work in your fashion design brief.
It’s a great way to demonstrate to your potential client that you know what you’re talking about—the proof is in the pictures. Share a wide variety of designs—-from billowing dresses to tailored shirts—to display your creativity and craftsmanship. This way, customers can start getting excited about what you’ll pull out of the bag when it comes to their garment.
Seek inspiration from your peers
As a freelancer, you don’t have the luxury of colleagues to bounce your ideas off or to have someone look at your brief to see if you’ve hit objectives. However, the beauty of the internet is that you’ve got places like LinkedIn and Twitter that are full of freelancers who may be able to provide some insight into your document.
Creating a Fashion Design Brief is Simple with Bonsai
Creating a fashion design brief can be a difficult one for any designer without the help and guidance of a template. That’s where Bonsai comes in! With Bonsai you can use the fashion design brief example that you can tweak and change to your requirements.
There are plenty of benefits to using this platform as a designer. Here are just a few reasons why you should be using Bonsai for your project briefs.
It’s free to use
One of the major benefits that comes with using Bonsai is that it’s free to use. It means that you can utilize a great tool to create professional documents without spending a dime.
For freelancers, limiting the amount of expenses can help you put more of that profit from clients into your back pocket, or further invest in yourself!
It makes you look more professional
With a well thought and laid out document like a design brief from Bonsai, it’s going to help you look more professional in front of any brand. First impressions are essential as a designer, so it’s good to have a template that has everything you need to create a first-class brief.
Easy to use and understand
Bonsai’s platform is designed so that anyone can use it easily and effectively. So even if you’re not as proficient when it comes to technology as you’d like to be, this will be a walk down the runway. There are plenty of resources that are free to use in case you do get stuck.
Either way, it’ll help you save time and it’s easy enough to generate a fashion brief in a matter of hours, rather than days.
Bonsai is a powerful tool that can deliver excellent design briefs for your clients–so much more intuitive than Microsoft Word. Give your clients something to be excited about.
Fashion Design Brief FAQs
Why is a fashion design brief template important?
A fashion brief template is helpful to save time and provide structure, making you appear more professional. Templates will help you deliver a ‘top model’ document that will leave any client wanting more.
What makes a Bonsai fashion design template so useful?
The structure provided by Bonsai is what makes it so effective for any designers who use it. It’s much better than having to create one from scratch on a basic Microsoft Word document.
What makes it super beneficial for freelancers is that it’s free to download. No money needs to be spent!
How long should it take to create a fashion design brief?
That depends on the complexity of the project and how much you want to put into the brief. Try to set some time aside in your day to concentrate on it fully and to get it done in one sitting. With the Bonsai template, you’ll find it takes a lot less time than creating one from scratch.