‘So like, do you just sit around and draw clothes all day, yeah?’ ‘What is there to study about fashion though?’ ‘I don’t think fashion is a real degree, it must just be so easy’ ‘it’s just clothes, I don’t get it, I could do it.’
Well let me tell you something, brother (10 points if you got that reference). Just because I’m not using a calculator doing some kind of equation or losing my mind over some court case from the 1900’s doesn’t mean I’m dumb. Nor does it automatically make my degree ‘easy’ or any less of a degree.
I am sick to death of people under-mining fashion students. Not just fashion students but creative and arts students in general. Ever since I was 16/17 in school, the so-called ‘fun’ degrees at uni were belittled not only by peers but by teachers. When you tell someone you’re a fashion student, they all do this weird, scathing ‘I’m going to pretend that’s good and pretend I’m interested’ look. You can almost feel them wanting to change the subject and wish you had never told them. It’s beyond me how some people still think that cutting about in a lab coat is some kind of rite of passage to academic superiority and infinite intelligence. That mindset just makes you an ignorant, sanctimonious prick.
Indeed, you may study what is considered to be a more ‘academically-led’ course but it doesn’t mean that my course is a walk in the park. Ask a maths and stats student to come up with a new and innovative menswear brand. Get a model, lead a photo shoot, work out costing based on specific materials, create a brand with a strong product portfolio, use computer aided design and photoshop, think of marketing strategies, make prototypes, consider visual aspects of the brand – packaging, POS, visual merchandising, online presence and finally, pitch it to those in industry. They’d struggle. Ask me to work through several equations, applied maths problems and understand theory by mathematicians and statisticians. I’d struggle.
Just because your course isn’t ‘creative’ doesn’t mean I haven’t been up til 4am slaving away on coursework. It doesn’t mean I haven’t had breakdowns in the library with a £3 Sainsburys meal deal to console me. It doesn’t mean you will be more successful than me with a ‘better’ job and it certainly doesn’t mean you’re more intelligent than me.
This whole ‘easy degree’ stigma is honestly embarrassing and needs to stop – there is no such thing as an ‘easy degree’ and everyone knows that. I have 3 hours of fashion classes/lectures a week and that is it. The rest of my subjects/electives are general business based subjects. I don’t ‘just sit and draw all day’. I really f*cking wish I did! Seems more fun than essays on social entrepreneurship, reports on consumer buying behaviour and PR strategy presentations anyway. But what do I know? Apparently nothing, cause I’m ‘just a fashion student’.