Careers in Arts, Crafts and Design - CV Plaza

Careers in Arts, Crafts and Design


Are you creative?
Do you have a passion to create something new?
Then a career in Arts, Craft and Design could be right for you!

This sector is primarily based around creativity and expressing oneself through one’s designing, creating and building skills.

There are dozens of exciting career paths within this industry; ranging from Artists and Product Designers to Medical Illustrators and Interior Designers.

The world-renowned architect Daniel Libeskind said:

“I think there is a new awareness in this 21st century that design is as important to where and how we live as it is for museums, concert halls and civic buildings.”

Example of an interior design project

Specific areas of work

This sector is broken down into the following two key areas;

1) Arts and Crafts

Individuals working in this part of the industry are concerned with making decorative designs and objects by using their hands and simple tools.

These objects can be a piece of art, a handmade chair or a pair of handcrafted shoes.

The most common materials that are used are textiles, wood, glass, stone, paper and clay.


2) Design

This part of this sector is very broad and designers can specialise in numerous areas, including:

  • Graphics
  • Fashion
  • Architecture
  • Ceramics
  • Exhibition
  • Textile

Many designers will start working for smaller companies in their chosen fields and gradually build their portfolio and work their way up. Those with substantial work experience can become self-employed and begin designing under their own name or brand.


Similar to other sectors, there is also a very a high demand for professionals who can obtain a management position. This could involve working for a large company or brand to overlook the designers and offer guidance when necessary; it may also include working with members of the public and exposing the company’s brand via social media or events.

Education and qualifications

Many roles in this sector are based on an individual’s capabilities and as such many employers do not tend to ask for any specific degree requirements. However, a degree in any of following subjects would support a strong application and increase the chances of securing an interview:

  • Fashion
  • Art/ Fine Art
  • Graphics / Graphic Design

Many employers will ask for a portfolio of previous work experience so it is recommended that you keep a sample copy of all the projects that you have worked on and/or completed.

Skills and personal attributes

  • Creativity: This is probably THE most important skill to have in this area of work. Designers, by definition, work on creating new things so it is vital that whatever is being created is something new, exciting and thought-provoking and not a replica.
  • Technical skills: Most jobs in this sector are hands on and many employers will expect individuals to have excellent technical skills – such as IT – through some form of formal training or experience.
  • Time management: Working in this field means that one probably will be working long and irregular hours in order to meet deadlines. Successful candidates must have excellent time management skills to ensure everything is completed on time and without comprising on quality.
  • Up to date on latest trends: Professionals in this environment are expected to be up-to-date with the latest trends and developments in their particular industry.
  • Team working skills: This sector often requires large groups of people working together on the same project and therefore individuals must be able to effectively work in a team to ensure everything is completed and no ideas are missed or excluded in the process.

Pay and benefits

On average professionals working in this sector receive good salaries.

A typical entry level salary is between £15,000 and £16,000.

Mid-level jobs such as Assistant Designers are typically paid up to £35.000 and those with substantial work experience could see their salaries double to and in excess of £70,000 (depending on the job role and field of work).

Figures are intended as a guideline only.

Another popular route of work is to become self-employed and work for yourself. Besides the flexibility and freedom that self-employment offers, some successful designers have evolved to create their own product lines and brands and have become financially independent as a result of it.

Likes and advantages

  1. Hands-on: Working in this sector means that you’ll be constantly working on new and exciting projects with a lot of hands-on activities to keep your brain (and body!) active.
  2. Adventure: Something new and exciting is always happening and designers can always look forward to the new projects and opportunities coming their way.
  3. Travel: Professionals who are working for large companies or brands might be asked to attend events, seminars, exhibitions or meetings across the country and indeed the world. One day you could be working on a project in New York and the next day you’ll be attending the Designer’s conference in Paris!
  4. Self-employed: Once an individual has gained the correct amount of experience, it is very likely that they will become self-employed. Having full-control of everything, from what projects you accept to which hours you will work, can be quite appealing to some!
  5. Opportunities: This sector can offer individuals everything from personal development, skills enhancement, networking and attending exclusive events!


  1. Work is not always stable: This is a very competitive industry and getting and keeping a job or project is not guaranteed. This is especially true for an individual who would like to become self-employed and work for themselves.
  2. Long hours: The jobs in this sector are far from the standard 9-5 jobs. One will inevitably need to work long and irregular hours in order to “make it” in this industry. A lot of travelling, attending events and exhibitions is also not uncommon.
  3. Stressful: Professionals in this sector are often put under a lot of stress and pressure; especially during peak times and therefore an individual must be prepared to deal with such occurrences.

The Arts, Craft and Design is a thriving sector and is expected to experience a rapid growth in the coming decade; particularly for jobs related to design and technology. Innovation and adaptation to new trends, conventions and technology are critical to being successful in this industry.

Written by Sobhan Mohmand
Sobhan is a qualified Careers Advisor and Professional CV Writer with over 10 years of experience in helping job seekers get a job. He is a Member of the Careers Development Institute (CDI) and is listed on the official UK Register of Career Development Professionals. He holds a Level 6 Diploma in Career Guidance and Development (QCF).
Sector picture


    £15.000 – £50.000
    Degree or Relevant Work Experience
    37 – 45 hours per week


  • Design Skills
    Producing excellent designs that meet user requirements
  • Communication Skills
    Ability to communicate effectively with clients and co-workers
  • Writing Skills
    Excellent writing skills to produce clear and concise reports and documentation
  • Attention to Detail
    Ensuring that no “small details” are overlooked during the work
  • Creativity
    Ability to “think outside the box” to come up with novel ideas
  • Computing Skills
    Having good knowledge of Microsoft Office and designing and drawing programs