Applying for a job in fashion can be very competitive. It is also a reasonably long process, which will involve searching job listings, preparing and writing CVs and cover letters, updating your portfolio and taking part in interviews.
You should consider each step of this process as a means to get onto the next. Each time you will need to stand out of the crowd and highlight what makes you a strong candidate. Under ‘Work’, in our menu above, you will find a series of guides to help you write an effective fashion CV, compose the ideal cover letter, edit your portfolio and conduct the best interview.
Now that you’ve got your fashion CV ready, its time for you to write your cover letter. Writing a cover letter is very different to writing your CV. It offers you the chance to explain why you are the best candidate for the job. You will need to make use again of the relevant skills and experiences you have listed for your CV.
- What to say in your cover letter
- Cover Letter presentation
- How to address your correspondent in a job application cover letter
- 5 Key points to remember
What to say in your cover letter
Your CV provides objective information about you. There is no need to repeat it in the cover letter, but ‘lean’ on it to show who you are and what you have to offer. Develop the part of your CV most relevant for this specific job. Before you do this, make sure to have a good understanding of the vacancy and of the knowledge and skills it requires.
Explain what interests you about this particular job. Research into the organisation and company will help here, and commenting on their work will make you seem like you are actually interested in working for them.
Then go into what experience you have. Provide past examples to illustrate your skills and show what you can do. This is where you ‘lean’ on your CV. You need to convince the person reading your letter that you have skills and knowledge that will help you contribute. Do not say that you believe you are the best for the job (this is easily said, after all you are applying to the job) instead point out past experiences listed in your CV that demonstrate it.
Cover Letter Presentation
The length of your fashion cover letter should be no more than 1 side of A4. Employers reckon that anywhere between half and a full page is ideal. It should be enough to effectively communicate why you should be employed. You have little room, so prioritise what to include based on its relevance and be clear and concise. The right language, correct grammar and clear sentences will make it easier for them to read your letter. Be in no doubt, as with your fashion CV, if your letter is not clear enough it will be discarded.
You do need to think about how you send the letter. If it’s accompanying an email application, then write the letter in the body of the email, rather than attaching it with your CV. If you’re posting your letter with your CV, print them on different sheets but use the same paper.
How to address your correspondent in a job application cover letter
Find out who you are writing to and address the person by name. There are some easy ways to do so: check the company website and its LinkedIn page… “Dear Sir/Madam” or “To whom it may concern” will suffice if necessary.
The way you finish an email is very important. “Yours sincerely” and “Best Regards” are two of the better ways to end a letter to someone you don’t know. If you’re emailing them and they reply, match how they sign off.
5 Key Points
- Write to your employer – make what you’re saying directly applicable and relevant to them. Take the time to find out whom to write to, it never fails to impress.
- If you can cut words then do! Too long a letter and people won’t bother; they don’t have the time!
- Draw out the most relevant parts of your CV.
- Provide examples of work you have done that qualify you for the role.
- Be polite – Use appropriate language and ways of communicating.