Fashion Camps to Fill Your Summer

By Amanda Cohen on October 31, 2017

It’s snowing in Michigan. This may seem irrelevant, but this nippy weather and cold snow are making me miss summer.

Ah, yes, summer: the time where I can wear shorts and can walk outside without wearing 5+ layers (if you go to school in the Midwest, you can empathize with me). Since I have been thinking about summer, I thought to myself, “I should write an article about summer, fashion, and how to keep all of my fashionistas busy while enjoying the warm weather.”

If you are younger and are interested in fashion, you may think to yourself that there is nothing you can do to incorporate your fashion interest in your summer plans. If you are a bit older and are interested in fashion, you may think that the only way to pursue this is by interning for a fashion magazine, a clothing store, or a designer.

Well, I have news for you, ladies and gentlemen. There is another way to pursue your passion for fashion in the summer. I present to you fashion summer camp: what to expect, how to get involved, and where to go! If you are interested in this at all, read on!

Fashion Summer Camp: What to Expect

Answering the question of “what to expect” can be tricky because there are so many different layers to this conversation. However, let’s start with age groups. Some people may think that they are too old for summer camps of any kind, and other people may think that they are too young. For more typical summer camps, this is a vital concern, but specialty camps, like fashion camp, are very different.

Most fashion summer camps offer programs for people ranging from 10-18 (if you are above 18 and you want to go back to camp, you can probably become an instructor). You are probably thinking that this is way too wide of an age group, but like any summer camp, the age groups will be divided up and as your work your way up the age totem pole, you will learn more advanced concepts.

Another facet of “what to expect” is what exactly you will be doing while you’re there. This truly varies from camp-to-camp, but I can still give you a general idea as to what you could be doing at each camp. Most fashion camps offer different types of programs –design programs, marketing programs, fashion business programs, modeling programs, etc. The level of difficulty and time commitment for each program increases with age, which is why you should start at these camps early so you can have a natural progression of skills! There are programs for even the youngest of kids (mostly they are just pretend fashion shows and drawing, but it’s still something)!

Fashion Summer Camp: How to Get Involved

Every fashion summer camp has different criteria in order to become a member of the camp. For the more rigorous camps for people either entering college or for students in college, you may have to submit a resume and portfolio. This may seem daunting, but if you are a late-bloomer in the fashion department and you want to get started at a more rigorous camp, write a cover letter, schedule an interview, network with alumni, etc.

For the less rigorous camps and for the camps that focus on younger children, usually the only requirement is parental consent and a down payment to secure your spot at the camp. If you are looking for more of a fashion-internship that is not a traditionally paid internship, look for volunteer opportunities (like at local fashion shows, etc.).

Fashion Summer Camp: Where to Go

Answering the question of “where to go” is extremely difficult because there are so many different camps of different calibers and different prices so you may have to take this section with a grain of salt. Most camps in the New York and California area are amazing and are very fashion-oriented because they are in two of the most influential fashion states.

Another way to go about finding the right camp is looking at college campuses. Obviously, there will be programs at Parsons School of Design, the Fashion Institute of Technology, Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Rhode Island School of Design, and any other fashion-oriented universities. However, be sure to check out other college campuses because most college campuses offer interesting and specific summertime programs. A simple Google search will also help to locate some obscure fashion camps that are not as popular, but are still awesome and beneficial!

I hope that this article was a good distraction from the winter blues and will help you start thinking about what your summer plans are! Even if you are not super into fashion, I would still look into these camps because many of them help to hone in on skills that will help you in your everyday life. I think everyone can agree when I say summer, please come back soon!

I am currently a junior at the University of Michigan.

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