Readymade Garment Business – The Manufacturing Process Checklist

How to execute readymade garment orders? What would be the checklist for processing an order without much problems in the internal processes? - These are the common questions asked by start-up entrepreneurs and small garment business owners.

It is very important that every manufacturers should follow standard procedures for making readymade garments. This article covers such standard procedures in brief. To take your business process into the next level read following checklist and follow it.

Considering that you have received an order (shirt order) for manufacturing. And your goal is to deliver the order on time with full quantity and with best possible quality.

Followings are steps must be followed during processing an order.

  1. Once you receive the sample of garment order, review the garment sample and make a list of all detailing. Estimate consumption of fabric and trims per garment. (In case, if you only receive technical sheet, develop sample based on specification and take approval from the customer and follow the checklist ) 
  2. Make Bill of Materials (BOM) after receiving the order. Include all items in the BOM. 
  3. Source Fabrics and trims as per specification.
  4. After receiving fabrics and trims, check quality and quantity. Fabric and trims need to be checked as per specification. For the confirmation for fabric properties you might need to send fabric ample to the testing labs. Test fabric shrinkage length wise as well width wise. Prepare shade band if shade variation present in the fabric lots.
  5. Develop patterns for the style. Grading of pattern to be done for different sizes. Make sample marker with actual garment patterns and find average consumption of fabrics.
  6. Make two/three sample garments and follow all processes like washing and finishing. Check these samples after finishing and according to report of the sample start bulk process. This process will stop you making mistakes in patterns and shrinkage related issue in fabrics. Just to be careful from wasting fabric and also maintaining quality of the final product.
  7. Lay fabric on the table as per marker length. Cut multiple layers at a time to save time in cutting. You can even layer multiple colors together. Remember to check size ratio prior to cutting the lay. 
  8. Make marker on the fabric layer. Cut fabric as per patterns. Cut quantity to be as per size ratio specified in the purchase order. You can cut some extra garment for buffer. Like if some defective or rejected garment are made in the following processes.
  9. Check cut components randomly for fabric defects. Also check if cutting is done according to the approved pattern.
  10. Make bundles for cut parts if required. Or you can feed complete layers to the sewing operator. 
  11. Set a group of tailors for sewing garments. Define sequence of the operation to be followed by tailors. Sew garments
  12. Check stitching quality during sewing and at the end of sewing. Defective garment can be altered by the same tailor or one alteration tailor can be assigned for alteration and part changing job. 
  13. Send stitched garment to finishing section. If your product is a shirt, attach buttons and make button hole on front placket and cuffs. Trim uncut threads. Check all garments for defects.
  14. Remove stains before pressing with a steam iron. If needed wash garments for cleaning and removing stains. Press garments using suitable iron.
  15. Fold garments. Attach hangtags and Price tags. Put garments into poly bags. Pack garments according to customer requirement. 
  16. Audit finished and packed garment randomly for quality assurance. 
  17. Store packed garment for shipping to your buyers.

You are done. Follow these steps in the next production order.

This is just a summary of the standard operating procedures of the overall garment production. You can prepare details operation procedures for all activities.

Remember, the checklist would be different based on product styling and product requirement.

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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