Fabric and Apparel Patternmaker Jobs Washington DC
Silver Spring, MD
Fabric and Apparel Patternmaker Career
Fabric and Apparel Patternmakers
Nature of the Work
Textile, apparel, and furnishings workers produce fibers, cloth, and upholstery, and fashion them into a wide range of products that we use in our daily lives. Textiles are the basis of towels, bed linens, hosiery and socks, and nearly all clothing, but they also are a key ingredient in products ranging from roofing to tires. This statement covers a wide variety of occupations related to the production and care of textiles, apparel, and furnishings, ranging from heavy industrial machine operators to craft workers who make custom clothing and upholster furniture.
Laundry and dry-cleaning workers, the largest specialty, clean garments, linens, draperies, blankets, and other articles. They also may clean leather, suede, furs, and rugs. Laundry and dry-cleaning workers ensure proper cleaning by adjusting machine settings for a given fabric or article, as determined by the cleaning instructions on each item of clothing. When necessary, workers treat spots and stains on articles before laundering or dry-cleaning. They tend machines during cleaning and ensure that items are not lost or misplaced with those of another customer.
Closely related to dry-cleaning workers are pressers, textile, garment, and related materials. These workers often work in dry-cleaning establishments and are responsible for starching, steaming and ironing clothing and other items to remove wrinkles. When finished, they assemble each customer's items, bag or box the articles, and prepare an itemized bill for the customer.
Tailors, dressmakers, and custom sewers alter and repair garments in local neighborhood shops, department stores, or dry-cleaning establishments. Alterations may include hemming pants or dresses, and repairs commonly consist of patching or sewing a torn article of clothing. Some workers may be required to make elaborate custom clothing for special occasions or other unique events.
Most workers in apparel occupations, however, are found in manufacturing, performing specialized tasks in the production of large numbers of garments that are shipped to retail establishments for sale. Fabric and apparel patternmakers convert a clothing designer's original model of a garment into separate parts that can be laid out on a length of fabric. They use computers to outline the parts and draw in details to indicate the position of pleats, buttonholes, and other features. They then alter the size of the pieces in the pattern to produce garments of various sizes and, in doing so, determine the best layout of pieces to minimize waste of material. Once a pattern has been created, mass production of the garment begins.
The first step in manufacturing textiles is preparing the fibers. Extruding and forming machine setters, operators, and tenders, synthetic and glass fibers, set up and operate machines that extrude or force liquid synthetic material, such as rayon, ...