How To Design Your Own Clothing? A Guide

In this post, we will discuss how to design your own clothing. Designing your own clothing can be rewarding and fulfilling and maybe even therapeutic for many. Many people pick up designing just because it allows them to express the unique style they can’t find in mass-produced heaps.

For some, it’s more about passion and love for designing. Whatever the reason, fashion designing of any scale is an excellent pursuit.

Whether you aspire to become a professional fashion designer or want to design your own clothing to wear yourself. Learning how to design your own clothing is a skill worth developing, and here’s a guide to help you out a little. 

Why Design Your Own Clothing?

There are many reasons why one would consider designing their clothes. One of the simplest and the most obvious reason is the control you get. It gives you complete control over the entire design process. You are in the driver’s seat when creating your own garment.

There’s no need to answer to anyone; you get to call the shots. The colors, the fabrics, the measurements, you get to decide everything. 

design your own clothing

It also means you don’t have to compromise on anything. You don’t have to settle for someone else’s vision and idea of fashion. Nobody knows what you want to wear better than you. Hence, there is nobody that can design your clothes better than you. And if something doesn’t go as planned, you can always start over and try again. 

You can also turn it into a way of making a living, not just a hobby. A fashion designing career is very lucrative and pays a lot. You need work to showcase on your portfolio, too, after all. If a job is not your vibe, you can also start a business of your own. 

The Preparations

Now that the purpose of designing your clothes yourself is clear, we can move on to the prerequisites. The reason you want to start designing clothes can make a difference in what you will need to know and learn as well. 

For example, if you want to bring your designs to life, outside of just a drawing, you might need to learn sewing. You will also need that if you are planning on starting a business or skip that part without worrying if you only handle the drawing and designing part. 

You won’t need that if you are only going to sell or showcase your designs. 

  • Look For Inspiration

Once you know why and for what you want to design your own clothing, it’s time to look for ideas and inspiration. Inspiration can come from anywhere if you have an eye for fashion. Be it magazines, fashion shows, historical fashion, art, or even a Pinterest board. Fashion is everywhere; you need to look around. Gather ideas that resonate with your style and vision. Fashion that you like or think others would like. 

Don’t hesitate to research and learn about different fashion designers’ work. Studying the designs of those who have mastered the craft can provide valuable insights into techniques, colors, and more. However, remember to stay true to your vision and avoid directly copying someone else’s work. 

  • Keep An Eye On The Trends

While originality and uniqueness are a must, it doesn’t hurt to hop on the trends. Especially if you are designing for yourself, it is also possible that you might like an existing fashion piece and want to mold it to your liking. 

It also helps when setting up a business and to start selling. Trendy fashion will always sell. Trends might also help you find your niche. 

  • Understand Colors & Combinations

Understanding colors and their combinations are essential in fashion design. You can’t just design a garment based on your favorite colors. It is important to know what colors go well together and which combination looks good to the eyes. Study the basics of color theory before deciding on the colour schemes. The color theory and the color wheel describe the various relationships and dynamics between colors. There are clear-cut definitions of colors you should never pair together and which colors look good. 

  • Learning About Fabrics & Materials

Knowing fabrics and materials is crucial for fashion design. You need it to design clothing that looks great, feels comfortable, and suits the intended purpose. There are so many different fabrics with different characteristics. You can’t learn all of it overnight, obviously. It is a learning curve. It will take time, and you will keep learning on your way. 

  • Improving On Drawing & illustration

Drawing and illustration skills are fundamental for fashion designers to bring their ideas into the real world. You don’t need to be a professional artist for fashion design, but a grasp of drawing proportions, design illustrations, patterns, etc., will always be required. 

You can always draw on paper and in sketchbooks, but a digital illustration is also an option. However, for that that you might need drawing tablets and other accessories. 

  • Learn Sewing 

This step is for those who want to do more than draw and design. If you want to wear your ideas and make others wear them, too, you might want to start sewing unless you set up a large business and plan to employ people. 

If designing and making clothes for yourself is the motive, paying to get them sewn is an unnecessary expense. 

With that covered, you can start your new journey into the fashion design world. 

Start Sketching & Drawing

With an idea and vision in your mind, start drawing it out on paper or a digital screen. Draw rough designs first to serve as the foundation. Having a visual to look at makes it easier to improve it as compared to doing all of that in your head. Star from a basic figure and body outline and gradually add sleeves, necklines, and other parts. Change the lengths, and play around with the fittings; until you can see what you like. 

Use A Designing Software

A basic drawing of a garment is limited and one-dimensional. You can’t see all the angles or the fitting. A designing software might help you with that. Adobe Illustrator, CorelDRAW, and CLO 3D are three of the best tools you can use to aid in designing clothes. 

These applications give you complete control and freedom. Want to see your designs in 3D? Feel like trying out different lengths and proportions? Need to see what different fittings would look like? You can do it all and more with any of these applications. 

Choose The Right Colors – Design Your Own Clothing

Colors are extremely important and an integral part of the look you are about to create. You might want to use your favorite colors, but it’s not as simple as that. Not all colors go well together, and you might also need to consider the garment’s purpose. For example, an elegant dress might not look the best in shiny silver. 

Gather Fabrics & Materials

Once you have a clear vision of your designs, it’s time to gather the fabrics and materials that will bring them to life. Consider the attributes and characteristics of various fabrics and choose the ones that match your purpose.

There are basic attributes like durability, weight, elasticity, etc., and factors like how well the air passes through or if you can drape the fabrics easily. It also depends on the purpose of your garment. For example, breathability is crucial if you are designing something to be used during physical exertion, like sports. 

Sewing & Stitching

Now, you have all the ingredients you need for the recipe for your first-ever self-designed dress. It is time to bring it all together. And you will do that with the help of a sewing machine. Get someone experienced to help you with it if it’s your first time sewing. 

Follow all the instructions, and with time & experience, it will start coming naturally. 


It is only natural if you don’t get your dress perfect on your first try. You might have fitting issues, length issues, and such. Take your time to adjust all of that and apply the final finish. Addons like buttons, patches, and more decorative can also be added. And if you plan on selling it, you might want to add a brand tag too. 

Conclusion – Design Your Own Clothing

In conclusion, designing your clothing yourself can be an amazing hobby or profession to pick up. Be it for self-expression, making a living, or a passion for fashion design. You don’t need a lot to bring your visions to life, either. The vision itself is the most important. As long as you understand fashion, colors, different fabrics, etc., you can not go wrong. 

That said, hopefully, this guide will help you understand the process and all the steps involved. So, whether you dream of starting a fashion label or wish to enjoy making your own clothes, this guide is all you will need. 

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