Tailors, Dressmakers, and Custom Sewers

Description

Design, make, alter, repair, or fit garments.

Tasks

  • Fit and study garments on customers to determine required alterations.
  • Sew garments, using needles and thread or sewing machines.
  • 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.
  • Assemble garment parts and join parts with basting stitches, using needles and thread or sewing machines.
  • Remove stitches from garments to be altered, using rippers or razor blades.
  • 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.
  • Maintain garment drape and proportions as alterations are performed.
  • Press garments, using hand irons or pressing machines.
  • Trim excess material, using scissors.
  • Develop, copy, or adapt designs for garments, and design patterns to fit measurements, applying knowledge of garment design, construction, styling, and fabric.
  • Make garment style changes, such as tapering pant legs, narrowing lapels, and adding or removing padding.
  • Measure customers, using tape measures, and record measurements.
  • Estimate how much a garment will cost to make, based on factors such as time and material requirements.
  • Repair or replace defective garment parts such as pockets, zippers, snaps, buttons, and linings.
  • Confer with customers to determine types of material and garment styles desired.
  • Position patterns of garment parts on fabric, and cut fabric along outlines, using scissors.
  • Sew buttonholes and attach buttons in order to finish garments.
  • Put in padding and shaping materials.

Skills

Installation
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
Programming
Writing computer programs for various purposes.

Abilities

Spatial Orientation
The ability to know your location in relation to the environment or to know where other objects are in relation to you.
Sound Localization
The ability to tell the direction from which a sound originated.
Dynamic Flexibility
The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Speed of Limb Movement
The ability to quickly move the arms and legs.
Explosive Strength
The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
Night Vision
The ability to see under low light conditions.
Peripheral Vision
The ability to see objects or movement of objects to one's side when the eyes are looking ahead.
Glare Sensitivity
The ability to see objects in the presence of glare or bright lighting.

Interests

Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Work Style

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Concern for Others
Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Persistence
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Independence
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Achievement/Effort
Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.

Work Values

Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.
Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.

Lay Titles

Alteration Hand
Alteration Manager
Alteration Tailor Apprentice
Alterations Expert
Alterations Sewer
Alterations Supervisor
Appliquer
Cloth Cutter
Clothing Busheler
Clothing Cutter
Coat Baster
Coat Cutter
Coat Maker
Coat Tailor
Collar Cutter
Collar Setter
Collar Tailor
Collar Turner
Corset Fitter
Couture Alterations Dressmaker
Couturiere
Crocheter
Custom Dressmaker
Custom Seamstress
Custom Tailor
Custom Tailor Apprentice
Designer
Drapery Maker
Drapery Seamstress
Dress Cutter
Dress Fitter
Dressmaker
Dressmaker Garment Fitter
Embroiderer
Embroidery Machine Operator
Embroidery Worker
Fancy Needleworker
Fitter
Fur Finisher Seamstress
Furrier
Garment Cutter
Garment Fitter
Hand Alterations Seamstress
Hand Alterations Tailor
Hand Loom Weaver
Hat Trimmer
Lacemaker
Laceworker
Merchant Tailor
Pants Cutter
Pants Maker
Prototype Technician
Purse Maker
Quilt Maker
Quilter
Sample Stitcher
Seamstress
Seamstress Fitter
Sewing Machine Operator
Shop and Alteration Tailor
Shop Tailor Apprentice
Slip Cover Maker
Slip Cover Seamstress
Slip Cover Sewer
Suit Maker
Surgical Garment Fitter
Tailor
Tailor Apprentice
Tailor Fitter
Tailor Garment Fitter
Top Collar Baster
Top Collar Maker
Try On Baster
Under Baster
Undercollar Maker

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$12.64 hourly, $26,280 annual.
Employment (2008):
24,870 employees