Garment Construction Terminology

Apparel Production Terms   Garments   Fashion Terminology   Fashion Design

Garment construction refers to the process of assembling individual pieces of fabric and materials to create a wearable garment. It encompasses all the steps and techniques involved in turning a fashion design concept into a finished and functional piece of clothing. The primary goal of garment construction is to ensure that the final product is not only visually appealing but also fits well, is comfortable to wear, and serves its intended purpose effectively. Here are the primary elements of garment construction:

Pattern Making: This is the foundational step in garment construction. Pattern making involves creating templates, known as patterns, that serve as a guide for cutting fabric pieces. These patterns are typically made from paper or cardboard and are based on the designer's initial sketches and measurements. They include various pieces, such as front and back panels, sleeves, collars, and more, which, when sewn together, form the garment. Learn about the pattern making process.

Cutting: Once the patterns are ready, fabric is carefully cut according to these templates. Precision is essential to ensure that the fabric pieces align correctly during assembly, minimizing waste and ensuring an accurate fit.

Sewing and Stitching: Sewing is the core element of garment construction. Skilled seamstresses or sewing machines are used to stitch together the fabric pieces along the seams. Different types of stitches and techniques are employed, depending on the fabric, design, and purpose of the garment.

Seam Allowance: The allowance of extra fabric along the edges of the pieces to create seams.

Seam Finishes: Techniques used to prevent fraying and add durability to seams, such as serging, overlocking, or binding.

Darts and Pleats: These are folded or stitched sections of fabric that help shape the garment and provide a tailored fit.

Zippers, Buttons, and Fasteners: The attachment of closures and fasteners is a crucial part of garment construction. This includes installing zippers, sewing on buttons, and adding snaps or hooks.  Learn about notions.

Fitting and Adjustments: Throughout the construction process, fittings are conducted to ensure that the garment fits properly. Adjustments may be made to achieve the desired fit and comfort, addressing issues such as tightness, bagginess, or uneven seams.

Interfacing and Lining: Some garments require additional materials, such as interfacing and lining, to add structure, stability, and comfort. Interfacing is often used on collars, cuffs, and other areas that need reinforcement. Linings can provide a smooth and comfortable interior, as well as enhance the overall appearance.

Finishing Touches: Once the main construction is complete, finishing touches are added. These may include hemming the edges, topstitching for added reinforcement and decorative purposes, and applying any embellishments or decorations specified in the design.

Quality Control: Before a garment is considered finished, it undergoes rigorous quality control checks. These checks ensure that all seams are secure, there are no loose threads, the stitching is even, and the garment meets the designer's standards for fit and appearance.

Pressing and Ironing: Garments are pressed and ironed to give them a polished and crisp appearance. This step helps eliminate wrinkles, creases, and ensures a professional finish.

Labeling and Packaging: Garments are typically labeled with brand tags and care labels, and they are then packaged for distribution to retailers or consumers.

Garment construction is a highly skilled and intricate process that requires attention to detail, precision, and expertise in sewing techniques. The quality of construction significantly influences the overall look, feel, and durability of the final garment, making it a critical aspect of the fashion industry.

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