Tailors, Dressmakers, and Custom Sewer Career

Job Description: Design, make, alter, repair, or fit garments.


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Tailors, Dressmakers, and Custom Sewer Career

What Tailors, Dressmakers, and Custom Sewers do:

  • Trim excess material, using scissors.
  • Sew garments, using needles and thread or sewing machines.
  • Repair or replace defective garment parts, such as pockets, zippers, snaps, buttons, and linings.
  • Remove stitches from garments to be altered, using rippers or razor blades.
  • Press garments, using hand irons or pressing machines.
  • Make garment style changes, such as tapering pant legs, narrowing lapels, and adding or removing padding.
  • Measure parts, such as sleeves or pant legs, and mark or pin-fold alteration lines.
  • Take up or let down hems to shorten or lengthen garment parts, such as sleeves.
  • Let out or take in seams in suits and other garments to improve fit.
  • Maintain garment drape and proportions as alterations are performed.
  • Assemble garment parts and join parts with basting stitches, using needles and thread or sewing machines.
  • Fit and study garments on customers to determine required alterations.
  • Put in padding and shaping materials.
  • Sew buttonholes and attach buttons to finish garments.
  • Measure customers, using tape measures, and record measurements.
  • Record required alterations and instructions on tags, and attach them to garments.
  • Examine tags on garments to determine alterations that are needed.
  • Fit, alter, repair, and make made-to-measure clothing, according to customers' and clothing manufacturers' specifications and fit, and applying principles of garment design, construction, and styling.
  • Position patterns of garment parts on fabric, and cut fabric along outlines, using scissors.
  • Confer with customers to determine types of material and garment styles desired.
  • Estimate how much a garment will cost to make, based on factors such as time and material requirements.
  • Develop, copy, or adapt designs for garments, and design patterns to fit measurements, applying knowledge of garment design, construction, styling, and fabric.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Controlling Machines and Processes - Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment - Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Selling or Influencing Others - Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Holland Code Chart for a Tailors, Dressmakers, and Custom Sewer