contemporary fashion buying

master's degree* · master programmes** · cycles de spécialisation*

from the showroom to the shop: how to buy and sell the dream of fashion

The course

Aimed at students who have previously graduated from economics, marketing or fashion design with marketing. Those who have proven work experience in these fields may also enrol on the course. It is aimed at training the participant to become a fashion buyer, an experienced professional in the selection and purchase of fashion products. This master’s course is ‘contemporary’ as it differentiates itself by providing current and future models of business, which encapsulate recent and future innovations and technology, and is taught by qualified industry practitioners.

Buyers need to be business-minded with strong analytical skills but able to negotiate and work alongside creative departments.
Through the study of subjects such as buying structure, trend forecasting, product and visual display, participants will learn all the technical and theoretical concepts they need to create a campaign of buying. By analysing different retail formats, gaining understanding of an organization from a buying team and studying key macro trends, they will be able to accurately understand the role of buyers and merchandisers in the global market of fashion and luxury.

The contents of the course will be devoted to the knowledge of proper stock mix and the main techniques of import /export. Pricing strategies and the profitability of a fashion product will be analysed. It will allow participants to learn how to properly plan the purchase of a seasonal collection, using a balanced mix of products and brands that fully satisfy the needs and tastes of the consumer. In addition, the study of various techniques of product development, the role of visual merchandising within a store and the adoption of joint negotiation techniques, will enable participants to tackle a real project of buying from a company that is an industry benchmark. In the final stage of the course, research methodologies and the experience acquired from business projects will allow participants to prepare a draft strategy for buying independently.


Fashion buyers are pivotal to a successful organisation, interacting with many different departments within a company. The course also offers opportunities for progression onto research degrees and will enable participants to pursue senior job opportunities in fashion buying merchandising, product development and visual merchandising, trend forecasting and retail, as well as in other areas of the creative industries.

Learning outcomes

  • demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the practice, theories and management related to fashion buying through the ability to use critical knowledge of key trends, market research and sales analysis to achieve business objectives for fashion brands and stakeholders;
  • critically evaluate the buying process and understand the impact of new innovation and technology using theoretical frameworks and research, and propose strategies to meet the short and long-term trading objectives of global fashion businesses;
  • demonstrate systematic understanding of the fashion product development management process, garment construction, and critical path management to meet the needs of specific target global markets;
  • critically appraise global sourcing opportunities (off-shore and domestic) and supply chain management components to meet consumer needs and business objectives;
  • critically evaluate research using relevant research methodologies to acquire knowledge through own findings and those of others in order to create a substantial piece of self-directed research to industry and academic standards.

Course themes

  • strategic fashion buying
  • contemporary issues in fashion
  • fashion buying and product development management
  • fashion marketing management
  • research methods
  • fashion buying and supply chain management
  • dissertation***


*Students who successfully complete the programmes taught in English in Paris and London will be awarded a master's degree by Manchester Met (Manchester Metropolitan University-UK). Master's degrees include a 12-week work placement 180 credits points must be earned in order for a master's degree to be awarded upon completion of the course. All candidates should meet specific requirements (please check the website indicating your nationality and study level). For further details please do not hesitate to contact the information office at the chosen school. 

** Students who successfully complete the programmes taught in Milano will be awarded an Istituto Marangoni certificate. 

***Only in the London and Paris schools.