What does a Fabric and Apparel Patternmaker do?

Draw and construct sets of precision master fabric patterns or layouts. May also mark and cut fabrics and apparel.

Jobs Roles

  • Test patterns by making and fitting sample garments.
  • Draw details on outlined parts to indicate where parts are to be joined, as well as the positions of pleats, pockets, buttonholes, and other features, using computers or drafting instruments.
  • Determine the best layout of pattern pieces to minimize waste of material, and mark fabric accordingly.
  • Create a master pattern for each size within a range of garment sizes, using charts, drafting instruments, computers, or grading devices.
  • Draw outlines of pattern parts by adapting or copying existing patterns, or by drafting new patterns.
  • Create a paper pattern from which to mass-produce a design concept.
  • Position and cut out master or sample patterns, using scissors and knives, or print out copies of patterns, using computers.
  • Discuss design specifications with designers, and convert their original models of garments into patterns of separate parts that can be laid out on a length of fabric.
  • Mark samples and finished patterns with information such as garment size, section, style, identification, and sewing instructions.
  • Compute dimensions of patterns according to sizes, considering stretching of material.
  • Examine sketches, sample articles, and design specifications to determine quantities, shapes, and sizes of pattern parts, and to determine the amount of material or fabric required to make a product.
  • Trace outlines of paper onto cardboard patterns, and cut patterns into parts to make templates.
  • Trace outlines of specified patterns onto material, and cut fabric using scissors.
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