Portfolio 101: How To Guarantee Acceptance Into Fashion School

In any creative industry, having a strong portfolio is a crucial part of making your work stand out, and can be your “make or break”. Coming up with a strong yet original and creative concept for your portfolio can be difficult and time consuming, luckily, we have all the tips to help set you apart from the rest.

The Requirements

The school you are applying to will post portfolio requirements online, be sure to read it word for word (no skimming!) and do as the requirements say.

Your Work

Start and finish with your strongest pieces, hit it off and finish with a BANG.

Never, ever, EVER, throw out your process work (even if it’s a sketch you did on a napkin at 2am in your kitchen). That’s the beauty of being in a creative field; every step counts to the end result (from the dinky sketch to the master piece). Include this process work in your portfolio so people can see how your mind works and your work evolves.

Quality Over Quantity

If you are taking scans or photographs of your pieces, make sure it is high quality. If you are putting your portfolio together digitally (on a program such as InDesign) make sure nothing is stretched, pixilated and low quality.


This section is extremely important- you are in a creative field and your presentation should show that and express your personality. Add personal touches that will set your portfolio apart from the hundreds of others in the pile.


Just because you are applying to Fashion School doesn’t mean your work needs to be just limited to that. Add in a few pieces that show other strengths and sides of your creativity (remember, you want to stand out amongst the rest).


Look over the final product by double and TRIPLE checking to make sure there are no spelling errors and additional tweaks you can make.

Final tip

The reality is there are thousands of students applying with a small selection of spots open. Always think what can make you stand out from the bunch.

Text by Marcia Lopes and Olivia Kolarich 

Image by Marcia Lopes

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