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How Do I Improve My Fashion Vocabulary?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 29 November 2016
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There are many ways to improve your fashion vocabulary, including reading fashion magazines and newsletters as well as fashion-related articles in regular magazines and newspapers. Even websites that provide fashion content can help you learn more about this industry, and some even provide fashion word glossaries. You can also learn about fashion by attending fashion shows and speaking with designers, models, or photographers. You may have this opportunity, for instance, if you attend meet-and-greet events or are lucky enough to win a behind-the-scenes look at a fashion event. Additionally, if you are interested in a fashion career, enrolling in fashion-related courses might help you to improve your fashion vocabulary.

One of the easiest and least stressful ways to build your fashion vocabulary is by reading. For example, you might find fashion magazines particularly helpful for learning fashion words from context, and fashion-related books may prove helpful as well. You might also find websites that help you learn about fashion and boost your vocabulary. Such publications may prove particularly helpful if they provide glossaries to which you can refer as you read the passages.

Regular newspapers can also help you build your fashion vocabulary. Often, newspapers provide coverage of fashion shows and other major fashion events. As with fashion magazines, you can learn a good deal from context when you read such articles. If there is anything you do not understand, you can probably look it up online.

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You can also learn fashion vocabulary by attending fashion shows and other types of fashion events. The most useful experiences may be those that allow you to mingle with people in the fashion industry or even just hear them speak. If you have the opportunity to go behind the scenes at a fashion show or event, this may prove helpful as well. Sometimes organizations run contests through which a person can win such an opportunity. You could also secure this opportunity as a student by asking the people who organize the show to allow you behind the scenes as a learning experience.

In the event that you are hoping to begin a fashion career, you might also consider taking fashion-related courses to boost your vocabulary. Classes can be a good way to learn, even if you are an enthusiast rather than a student. In such a case, you might find fashion courses through a local community college, and some adult education organizations may offer them as well.

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Discuss this Article

cupcake15
Post 5

@Mutsy - I agree and I think that the hardest thing to learn about fashion involves the textile terms. I think that once you learn the fabrics you can pretty much put any outfit together because you will know what works well together.

I also think that subscribing to fashion magazines helps to see many coordinated looks put together so that you can develop a better eye for fashion.

That is really what I do. I see an expensive look in a magazine and I try to copy it with clothing that is a lot cheaper. It is really fun because people are impressed with my fashion sense and they don’t realize how little I paid to pull it all together. I think that this is the fun part of fashion.

candyquilt
Post 4

My sister is a "fashionista." She loves and knows everything about fashion. Whenever I hear a fashion term that I don't understand, I ask her. She is like a walking fashion dictionary!

She became interested in fashion in high school because her close friends were very much into it. And as her interest in fashion grew, you could literally see it in her clothing, her style and looks. Everyone can look at her and know in a second that she is interested in fashion and I think because of that, she has attracted the same kind of friends in college.

Looking at my sis, I would say that meeting and becoming friends with people who know about fashion would be a good way to learn the vocabulary.

mutsy
Post 3

@Burcidi - I think that those are great ideas and I also think that learning fashion terminology comes from reading fashion trade magazines. If you read “Women’s Wear Daily” which is considered the fashion bible for those working in the fashion industry, you will not have any problems with your fashion vocab.

After a while you will not only know all of the clothing words, but you will also understand the fashion trends and what is hot for the season. You will know what clothing and jewelry trends are in for the season and pretty soon people will ask you for fashion advice.

burcidi
Post 2

I think the easiest way to pick up on fashion terms and keep up with new trends is to read fashion blogs.

The great part about blogs is that many bloggers have started out with little or no knowledge and have built it up slowly with time and interest. So instead of jumping right into the world of professionals, I think it's better to learn from someone who is similar to you.

You also get to interact with the blogger and other readers, ask questions and share your opinions. I honestly don't have the connections to meet up with people in the fashion industry or the budget to purchase every fashion magazine. But blogs are free and are out there for everyone's benefit. I think it's a great way to learn.

turquoise
Post 1

I think when it comes to any area of interest, it takes time and patience to get familiar with it. If you are dedicated to something, truly enjoy it and stick to it with patience, you learn the vocabulary automatically.

I actually got introduced to fashion vocabulary through a film about fashion. I saw how fun and exciting the fashion industry is and I wanted to be involved with it, even if it is just as a hobby. I started watching more films, documentaries and videos of behind the scenes of fashion shows. There are also fashion channels that don't only show fashion shows but have interviews with famous fashion designers and models as well.

These helped me learn fashion vocabulary and developed my understanding of the fashion industry better.

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