Ever dreamed of working in fashion across the globe? Fashion alum Vlora moved countries to pursue her career, and we'd be lying if we said we weren't jealous. Working as a Garment Technician at Pomelo Fashion in Thailand, her career story is sure to inspire.
We chatted with Vlora about her first job, a day in her life, and her best advice for aspiring fashion design students. Read it below!
Tell us a bit about yourself!
I am from Melbourne, Australia. I decided to study Fashion as I enjoyed sewing from a young age, then fell in love with pattern making. I have now found my passion as a Garment Technician, and am working full time in Bangkok, Thailand.
What did you love most about studying at MSF?
As a student, I learned best with "hands-on", practical lessons. I really enjoyed the sewing, pattern-making, and millinery projects and having great mentors to learn from. There is no better time to have creative freedom; you may not get the same opportunity again.
What’s your greatest memory of your time studying at MSF?
My greatest memory was completing my final collection. Having worked on the one collection the whole year...over many, many hours! My final collection 'Fluidity' featured a range of high-end evening wear. I was inspired by the shapes created in nature. I chose to do a more complex collection to learn as much as possible from the amazing teachers at MSF. It was a great feeling to see the collection showcased on the Runway and to take away a portfolio I’m really proud of.
Tell us about your current role as a Garment Technician at Pomelo Fashion.
I always dreamt of working overseas in fashion and started to look for companies based in Asia. I contacted Pomelo Fashion directly, and luckily they had an unadvertised opening! I moved from Melbourne to Bangkok this year for the role.
In a typical day, I will:
- Answer any emails from our sample room
- Attend a team update on the tasks for the day
- Attend fittings with the Designers and Buyers
- Complete the technical specs that we send back to the sample room
How did you start out in the fashion industry?
Whilst I was studying at MSF I took on an internship on most holidays. I interned with Kookai, Blue Illusion, and worked for Milliner Cailin Alainn. This helped me get my foot in the door and build an extensive resume by putting in the extra work. I scored my first post-graduation job after interning at Mariana Hardwick. I became a Workroom Assistant, then moved into uniforms, childrenswear, and now womenswear. Every role I have worked in has given me valuable experience to get to where I am today.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to pursue a career in fashion design?
My advice for people wanting to pursue a career in fashion would be:
- Learn all aspects of both design and garment construction. Having knowledge of both areas will set you apart from others.
- Get as much experience as you can whilst studying. Enter fashion challenges, intern in the market that interests you. You'll gain a head-start of experience and prove your willingness to work hard.
- Connect with your lecturers and people in the industry. Word of mouth is very powerful and more opportunities will come your way.
- Be proactive and persistent. If you're looking for a job, contact companies directly. Connect with recruitment agencies, ensure you have a good online presence.
- Consider accepting a role that isn’t your dream job. It could provide you with opportunities and experience you didn’t expect.
Bridal gown by Vlora
What's the best piece of advice you've received during your career?
I've always wanted to learn as much as I can from the people around me. The best piece of advice that I'd never forget came from an amazing mentor. They said, “People may not want to share their industry secrets, but keep your eyes open, watch and learn."
You've worked at some incredible fashion labels. Can you tell us some of the highlights of your industry experiences?
I love to travel, and now I have had the opportunity to get a job overseas, that allows me to combine both my passions.
What industry experience has left you feeling the proudest?
I love seeing the garments complete, fitting perfectly, and of good quality! It makes me happy to see customers feeling amazing and confident in a garment that I have worked on, or made for them.