7 Check Points for Cutting Department for Starting Bulk Cutting

Do you have the checklist for bulk cutting? If you don’t have, you can follow this check list.

The garment manufacturing process from sourcing of fabric to fabric testing, fabric quality inspection and audit to cutting of fabric are performed by different teams. All changes and update requirement must be communicated to the right person on time. If there is gap in communication between two departments, there might be chance of making mistakes and consequences might be resulted in a big loss of revenue.

To avoid delay in production, and quality issues you must look at following 7 check lists prior to starting bulk cutting. You can say these are requirement for starting cutting.

1. Bulk fabric approval

Approval of fabric quality in terms of fabric weight (GSM), its shade, shade band, lot variations (if any) and there are many other fabric quality parameters. All parameters must be matched with the buyer's requirement. You don't need to know everything about fabric parameters - you just need the written approval of the fabric you are going to cut for the specific order. Also ensure that you have taken correct fabric from the fabric store.

2. Approval of bulk pattern

Fitting and correction of the pattern. In export order garment patterns are modified and corrected at various stages and sometimes multiple correction and modification is done on patterns prior to bulk cutting. Though you take care of receiving the right pattern for bulk cutting, there might be chances of getting wrong patterns from pattern making department (when there is many versions of pattern for a same style). So you must check whether the pattern is signed one for the bulk cutting. In case there is lot-wise shrinkage variation in fabrics, you must have multiple patterns marked with shrinkage allowance.

3. Fabric relaxation 

If required fabric relaxation must be done prior to layering of fabrics. Fabric comes in rolls from the mills. In the fabric roll, normally fabric got stretched and if the fabric is cut without relaxing it, shrinkage may happen on garment components after cutting. The best way is to relax fabric before laying fabric on the cutting table to avoid fitting and measurement issue. If possible you can relax fabric after layering on the cutting table. What method to follow and how many hours fabric need to be relaxed? Take expert's advice for these.

4. Fabric shrinkage report and shrinkage approval

Don’t ignore fabric shrinkage report and approval on the shrinkage report. Having approval on fabrics confirms the fabric shrinkage too. But in many cases lot wise different shrinkage are found. You have to check the shrinkage report of different lots and plan your cutting rolls accordingly (assumed that fabric store will segregate fabric based on shrinkage percentage). Read how to calculate fabric shrinkage.

5. Cut planning

You might have detailed size and color wise quantity breakup for an order. Do you know what is best way of lay fabrics and cut all quantity by layering least number of lays? Plan it in advance looking at size ratio and color combination in the order sheet. 

Marker plan plays a big role in fabric consumption and fabric utilization. You can reduce wastage by following a better marker without compromising average consumption of fabric. Always follow approved marker in bulk cutting. In case your factory has CAD system, you can take marker approval on mini-marker.

7. Fabric consumption

Fabric cost incurred about 65% of the total garment cost. FOB of the garment is prepared based on fabric consumption. In case actual fabric consumption in bulk cutting comes higher than the estimated consumption (that one is used in costing), you might not save enough money from that order. Therefore it is better to cross-check the actual fabric consumption in final marker. If there is not much difference you can proceed for bulk cutting otherwise wait and take approval from the concern authority.

Add all these check points into cutting room standard operating procedure. Following these you can improve cutting room performance and cutting quality.