Auburn Family

Apparel Merchandising Student Aligns Education with a Future Career

Christina Holle is a student at Auburn University majoring in Apparel Merchandising, Design and Production Management. Holle is a senior and will graduate in May 2013. She is looking forward to her future in fashion and is grateful for the Auburn education that has been preparing her the past four years.

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“Having a real job in fashion this past summer really taught me how lucky I was to have an Auburn education,” Holle said. “We really do have the best guidance and everything we learn will be to our benefit once we start a career.”      

Holle is currently enrolled in a class called portfolio studies, where she is given the challenge to design an clothing line and is given a hypothetical amount of $5,000 to do that. This class is important because of the creativity she will be able to express and the financial aspect she will learn and understand.

“To design a faux clothing line, before I create a real one, is going to help me so much, Holle said. “I did not realize how much work goes into creating your own line and am extremely grateful to have this opportunity.”


Portfolio studies allows the students to create a brand for themselves and to get inspiration from other successful clothing lines. Holle is creating a clothing line that is competitive to the real clothing lines, Rag and Bone and Top Shop. Having knowledge about the fashion sense of Rag and Bone and Top Shop, one will get a sense of the style and direction of her clothing line.

“I want to take on the feel of Rag and Bone and Top Shop,” Holle said, “to not only mimic their style of clothes, but to mimic how they run their business and deal with online orders.”


Holle’s clothing line will be exclusively online, where she have to come up with an appealing aesthetic and arrange the logistics for the website. The financial plan of her line is a big portion of her grade. She will have to measure and calculate the orders of one person and the bulk orders as well.


Holle is constantly getting feedback from her teacher about everything they do in portfolio studies. The students are give five key items they have to focus on and turn in that assignment every week to evaluate and give a grade.

“I am thankful for my teacher’s constant feedback in everything that I do,” Holle said. “I have never done this before, so I really appreciate the continual guidance and dedication of someone who knows what she is doing.”


Holle is taking another important class called advance buying. In this class, she has to familiarize herself with numbers and is exposed to a business setting. Holle completes different case studies on stores, where she calculates and figures out why and why not certain items in a store did not sell.


Holle’s current job at Ann Taylor Loft is closely applicable to her advance buying class. Holle understand that certain business techniques closely correlate to why Loft is doing well financially.  

“It is really great that I can use this class to my own benefit as well as to Loft’s benefit,” Holle said. “I have worked closely with the managers on issues within the store, where I have helped them understand why the store is not making a good profit on certain clothing and mark-ups.”


Holle’s expresses her gratitude towards the AMPD department and how closely they have aligned the real world with education. With this, Holle is confident that she will succeed prior to graduation. 

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Tags: apparel merchandising,, brand, business, clothing line,, design, financial, logistics, portfolio studies, real world,


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