words Alexa Wang
While we do not have time to run through every single step of the process for manufacturing clothing, if you have ever wondered how clothes are made at scale, you can find out the basics by reading the following three things you didn’t know about clothes manufacturing.
1. Fibre Laser Cutting Machines Can Carry Out a Range of Tasks
When it comes to the actual production of clothing, it might surprise you to learn that many manufacturers still use some hand-finishing methods, such as adding decorative stitching.
But most of the manufacturing process is completed, as you would expect, with specific types of machines. One of the most widely used pieces of equipment at clothing manufacturing plants is the fibre laser cutting machine.
Some manufacturers still use more conventional cutting machines, but those can often displace the material and lead to inaccurate cutting. Furthermore, conventional cutting machines used for cutting fabric often require the assistance of an operator.
On the other hand, CNC laser cutting machines are highly accurate and can continue making the same items of clothing time after time, and they do not require manual operation.
Therefore, it is no wonder that most large manufacturers of clothing now use CNC fibre cutting machines.
Furthermore, manufacturers can pick up a wide variety of used fibre laser machines that function just as well as brand-new ones, so manufacturers can save on equipment costs as well as manual labour costs when they use fibre lasers.
Laser cutting machines are suitable for both small and large production lines.
They can be used for all manner of purposes besides cutting patterns for a variety of interesting clothes. For instance, they can be used to fade denim, engrave leather, and design ties.
Fibre laser cutting machines help clothing manufacturers to reduce their costs, gain operational flexibility, and produce clothing for the mass market quickly.
2. Pre-production Phases Require Both Fashion Designers and Technical Designers
Before the actual manufacturing begins, there are several pre-production steps to go through. You are sure to know that the first step is for a designer to create fashion sketches, which are creative illustrations that show things like the colours, patterns, and features that a specific item of clothing will have.
But you may not know that those initial sketches by a fashion designer need to be transformed into technical sketches. During the technical development stage, another designer takes the fashion designer’s sketches and creates drawings of them using a CAD program.
Technical sketches are proportionately accurate and they show the items of clothing from all angles and include all measurements and dimensions. The technical designer will package those sketches with grading scales and spec sheets in order to create a tech pack.
If the manufacturer is using CNC machinery to make clothing, once a CAD design has been created, the design needs to be turned into G-Code, which gives the CNC machinery the necessary instructions to make the items.
3. There Are Two Types of Clothing Manufacturers
You might expect manufacturers to handle all aspects of the manufacturing process of clothing, but that is not always the case. There are two main types of clothing manufacturers.
The first is known as CMT, which stands for Cut, Make, and Trim. CMT clothing manufacturers provide services that include cutting, trimming, and sewing garments into finished products.
The other type of clothing manufacturer is known as FFP, which stands for Full Production Package. That type of manufacturer works on all stages of the garment manufacturing process.