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Fabric Librarian - Fashion Career Profile

Written by FS StaffNovember 9, 2011
Fabric Librarian

Did You Know.... Academy of Art University’s School of Fashion offers BFA's in Fashion, Fashion Merchandising, Textile Design, Fashion Marketing, Fashion Styling, Costume Design, and Fashion Product Development. Learn more.

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What do Fabric Librarians do?  Where do Fabric Librarians work? FS takes a look:

About Fabric Librarians

Fabric librarian is an entry-level position in the textile industry. Fabric librarians are responsible for developing and maintaining fabric “libraries” for companies within the industry. Manufacturers use the library to determine which fabrics have been used in past products and which fabrics are currently being used. Fabric libraries also house information about fibers.

Fabric Librarian Jobs

Fabric librarians maintain fabric (and fiber) libraries in the textile industries by organizing samples and reference materials, adding new information as needed, and deleting dated information. The librarian tracks trends, chooses fabrics to be included in the library, selects, identifies, and locates fabrics for clients, and they highlight the latest materials. Fabric librarians also spend a significant amount of time researching and creating fabric resource lists.

Fabric librarians work for fabric and fiber companies, textile companies, and apparel manufacturing companies.

Fabric Librarian Salaries

Fabric librarians earn anywhere from $30,000 to $60,000 or more per year. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in comparison, median annual wages of traditional librarians were $52,530 in May 2008. The middle 50 percent earned between $42,240 and $65,300 and the highest 10 percent earned more than $81,130. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $33,190.

Programs to Consider:

Becoming a Fabric Librarian

Most employers prefer applicants with a bachelor’s degree in textile development, apparel and textile design, fashion design with a focus in textiles, fiber and textiles, or related field. Many employers prefer candidates with experience or training in library science. Library science coursework can help develop the archive and organization skills needed for the job. Employers also look for experience through an internship position, paid position, apprenticeship, or through an entry-level position as say, a fashion design assistant. If you’re interested in advancing to fabric library director, five years of experience is required as well as advanced skills in apparel and fabric forecasts and trends. 

Job Trends for Fabric Librarians

Fabric librarians can find positions with fiber and textile companies, apparel manufacturing companies, and industry trade associations. The best opportunities are in fashion capitals such as New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Miami, Paris and London as many manufacturers’ headquarters are located in these fashion centers.