What is Marker, Marker Making, Marker Efficiency and How to Calculate Marker Efficiency?

In this post, you will find answers to the following questions related to maker making in garment production.

What is a marker? What is marker making? What is the marker efficiency? How to calculate marker efficiency for the manual marker as well as a computerized marker?

What is a Marker?

Mini Marker
A marker is a diagram of a precise arrangement of pattern pieces for sizes of a specific style that are to be cut from in one spread. (source: Apparel Manufacturing, Glock and Kunz)

What is Marker Making?

Marker making is the process of determining a most efficient layout of pattern pieces for a style, fabric and distribution of sizes (source: Apparel Manufacturing, Glock and Kunz). Factories those don’t have a CAD system perform this process manually. In manual marker making to make an efficient marker one need time, skill and concentration. Now-a-day Marker making is mostly done by CAD systems which give accuracy, increase control over variables and reduces the time required in making markers.

What is a marker efficiency?

Marker efficiency is defined as a ratio of area of marker used in a garment and area of total marker.

Secondly, Glock and Kunz have defined this term in their book, Apparel Manufacturing as Marker efficiency is determined from fabric utilization, the percentage of total fabric that is actually used in garment parts.

Note: Marker efficiency and Fabric utilization is not same thing. In marker efficiency calculation fabric wastage due to end bits and end loss is not included but in fabric utilization calculation all kinds of fabric wastage are included.

How to calculate Marker Efficiency?

The calculation method of marker efficiency has been explained below with formula.


Marker efficiency% = (Area of marker used for garments / Area of total marker) * 100
Area of marker used for garments: In case of CAD marker, CAD system automatically calculates the total area of garment pattern pieces placed in a marker. So you get the area of marker that is consumed by garments from a CAD system.

Total Marker Area: To calculate the total marker area simply multiply marker length by marker width.

In a manual marker, it is difficult to measure the surface area of garments patterns in a marker. You can use a mechanical device, Planimeter, to calculate the surface area of pattern pieces from outlines of the pattern pieces.

Another method can be practiced to calculate marker efficiency when you don’t have CAD system or Panimeter. Calculate ratio of weight of fabric consumed by pattern pieces and total weight fabric under total marker area. So a separate formula is used to find marker efficiency.


Marker efficiency% = (Weight of fabric consumed by patterns pieces in a marker / Total weight of fabric under the marker area)*100

Weight of garment parts: To calculate the weight of garment parts cut one layer of fabric according to markers and weigh all garment parts that are included in a marker.

Weight of marker total area: Measure the weight of fabric (one layer) of total marker area.

Post your comments below in case need further clarification.

Prasanta Sarkar

Prasanta Sarkar is a textile engineer and a postgraduate in fashion technology from NIFT, New Delhi, India. He has authored 6 books in the field of garment manufacturing technology, garment business setup, and industrial engineering. He loves writing how-to guide articles in the fashion industry niche. He has been working in the apparel manufacturing industry since 2006. He has visited garment factories in many countries and implemented process improvement projects in numerous garment units in different continents including Asia, Europe, and South Africa. He is the founder and editor of the Online Clothing Study Blog.

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