How Many Meters of Cloth Do I Need for a Raincoat?

To make one raincoat you need 1.6 to 1.8 meters of cloth when the fabric width is 48-50 inches.

In this post, I am sharing a simple method of calculating fabric requirement for a raincoat. The same method can be used for estimating cloth requirement for any other garments.

Let me explain with the following example. This question was asked by an OCS reader and shared the following measurement of his raincoat.

Raincoat measurements:
- Length = 46 inches,
- Width = 47 inches (body circumference)
- Sleeve length =24 inches and
- Sleeve width=17 inches (circumference of the sleeve near armhole)

What would be the fabric requirement per raincoat in meters?

From the above measurement, the combined front and back body block dimension is 46 x 47.

If you buy a fabric of 48-50 inches wide, you can cut the front and back parts side by side. So you need fabric length for the body parts at least 46 inches + stitching margin plus cutting margin. Assume the margin fabric including both ends is 1 inch. So the fabric length for the body parts is 47 (46+1) inch.

Now you need to cut two sleeves. A 50 inches fabric width is enough for cutting two sleeves side by side. So the length of the fabric required for sleeve components 17+1 = 18 inches. 1 inch is added as cutting and stitching margin.

You need fabric for other small parts like the collar, flaps, side pockets and chest pocket. After cutting two sleeves, you will have access fabric of 17x16 (50 inches- 34 inches = 16 inches), you can use that fabric for cutting these small parts. You don't need addition fabric lengthwise. Hood is also a part of the raincoats. Raincoat hood’s measurements are not given, so I have not considered that part. In case your raincoat has a hood, you much take that part in fabric consumption calculation.

Based on the above information, for one piece of raincoat, you need fabric of 72 inches long. This is equal to 1.8 meters of fabric (fabric width 48-50 inches). To convert the length in yard multiply the 1.8 by 1.09361. In this case, you need 1.97 yards.

In case 17x16 block is not enough for these small parts, you have to use fabric lengthwise. fabric length will increase. Calculate that using the actual raincoat patterns.

Also read: How to calculate fabric consumption of garment?

Fabric consumption for bulk production

When you make bulk quantity, fabric requirement will come down. In the above case, you can see there is excess fabric is the side of the sleeve parts. You can cut 3 sleeves side by side. For example, if you make 3 coats, you can cut 3 pairs of sleeves in two rows instead of 3 rows. Thus average fabric requirement would be 1.6 meters (approx) per coat.

Also read: How many meters of cloth do I need for a shirt?

Notes:
• Stitching margin normally kept 1 centimetre. In a lay of multiple markers, the cutting margin is less than one inch.
• Fabric requirement would vary for different sizes of the raincoat

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.