A translator’s daily work routine can be really varied, as you might have read in our latest newsletter (for more about the daily perks of being a translator, as well as interesting news on the translation and language industry, subscribe to our newsletter)
What is one of the most unique but challenging translation topics would you say? Fashion translation! Travelling, tourist guides as well as hotel & hospitality texts translation are often among our most popular subjects for translation here at Metaphrasi. However, when we have the change to translate texts about fashion, merchandising and beauty, our adrenaline levels reach high scores!
Why is that?
Because translation for the fashion industry includes a lot of traps and usually a few tricky points:
- Its marketing character: Texts have to be alluring, enticing, almost provocative and highly advertising. The fashion industry is largely based on creating an atmosphere of luxury and cool exclusiveness, something that has to be kept in the translated text, too.
- Content: You might have to translate product descriptions, magazine editorials or press releases. Attention to detail is especially crucial (well, it is in all translation types, but here it can make a huge difference as the consumer needs to know exactly what they are buying) – leggings and jeggings are different things, and so are treggings! See through and sheer are not the same and there are some words, such as textiles, sewing designs etc. that are simply untranslatable. You need to stay on top of things and constantly update your knowledge in the field (that can justify the Vogue subscription you’ve always wanted to make 😉 )
- Length: Differences in grammar and syntax between languages might lead to different length between the original and the translated text. In cases where length is paramount, such as image captions, website product descriptions or ad campaigns, staying faithful to the meaning while maintaining the same wordcount might prove very tricky indeed.
- Use/skopos: You will often have to translate texts that have been created to be used in social media campaigns and ads, facebook posts, instagram captions etc. The difficulty here lies in creating attractive texts that appeal to a particular audience, which often is very different than the translator’s.
In fashion translation the translator has to find his/her inner artist in order to design, cut and assemble parts to create haute couture and sur-mesure final products.
Next on the blog: What would YOU like to read next? How to begin a freelance translator career? Or maybe tips for translating tourism texts and travel guides?
Meanwhile, you can grab a coffee and read about the difficulties of Game of Thrones Translation or read all about translating for the blind in our concise braille translation description!