What is a garment technologist? and why do you need one?

What is a garment technologist? and why do you need one?
Garment Technologist

A garment technologist is someone that supports the process of creating a product from prototype to production. The role’s responsibility may be varied depending if you work for a brand, supplier or factory/studio.

Many garment technologist come from a fashion design or textile background but there are also specific certifications available in the UK to be trained for this profession.

Key skills that a garment technologist should have are;

-Pattern making

-Understanding of garment construction

- Grading

-Foreign languages advantageous  in the UK are Chinese, Italian or Portuguese

-Knowledge of international fabric testing requirements

-Technical sketching

-Good people person both verbal and written

-Problem solving attitude

-Team collaboration and proactive mindset

This role in the fashion industry is one of the most important ones in the process of product development yet it is often unseen and lessen down to just measuring garments.  This view makes the job unpopular and misunderstood for people who are looking to work in the industry.  However the ones who have chosen to go down this career path like myself, I personally have found a wealth of technical knowledge that cannot be thought in a class room, has given me a bigger picture of how my decisions affect the supply chain and most importantly job stability. If you are a garment technologist most likely you will be one of the last teams to be made redundant, that is how important you are to a business.

The industry is changing. Companies are starting to realise that to be able to create a sustainable supply chain, they need strong technical skills and knowledge to push their ideas forward.  Some brands traditionally have merge their technical teams and product development together due to the complexity of their products.  These brands seem to be  the ones who are now leading the market in innovation because they have transition and adapted much more earlier than the rest of the industry. Some examples of these brands are; North face, Musto, Nike, Adidas.

Having a good garment technologist can help the success of a business. Good design is important but if the product cannot be made to a good commercial standard and delivered on time all the money and effort put into a business could be wasted.

It is important to have continuity with someone who understands the garment from start to end. A garment technologist can also give support in sourcing fabrics, labelling, assessing test reports, packaging, and compliance. She/he can help a business save money and become more sustainable by improving fit to reduce customer returns, reduce sampling during development and have effective communication with the factories during production to avoid mistakes.

If  you are a business that is focusing on bringing innovation in the existing traditional production system, it would be ideal to consider having a technical product developer that already understands the current process and can help your business evaluate and test whether your ideas are commercially doable and whether the  technology exists to make it possible.

If you are interested in technical services please get in touch to discuss your project and see if we can work together.

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