Fashion magazines, red carpets and fashion focused events all over the world show us the final (and very beautiful) product of the garment making process. And on television shows like Project Runway, we see the design process from sketching to fabric selection to pattern-making to sewing a single garment.
But very rarely do we see the production process for bringing the clothing to market that you and I purchase from local boutiques.
Ready to wear apparel involves many steps before it is hung on the racks in stores for consumption. Garment factories receive fabric from (mostly) overseas textile manufacturers in large bolts, and then the fabric is relaxed to allow fabrics to shrink so that further shrinkage during customer use is minimized. The fabric is then spread; and patterns are laid on top of the spread and the fabric is cut to the shape of the garment forms using either manually operated cutting equipment or a computerized cutting system.
Garments are then sewn in an assembly line or individually. Quality assurance is performed at the end of the sewing line to ensure that the garment has been properly assembled and that no manufacturing defects exist. This labor-intensive process progressively transforms pieces of fabric into designer garments.
Soon it is a process that will occur on Cape Cod! Kathryn Hilderbrand is a local designer, tailor and entrepreneur who in recent years has seen the entire landscape of apparel manufacturing change. So, she has founded the Good Clothing Company, a clothing production facility located in Mashpee. At Good Clothing Company, they’ll be offering small runs for new designers, creating local jobs and practicing ethical, sustainable and green production methods in their facility.
Find out more about their goals and their campaign to raise funds for more sewing machines on their Indiegogo page.