Quality Control Checklist for Apparel Product Sourcing

The quality control checklist should be used while the shipment inspection is done by auditor and quality inspector. In the apparel manufacturing, checking of raw materials, semi-stitched garments, stitched garments, and finished garments is done by internal quality assurance team. The manufacturer aims to pack the quality garments for shipping. But as a buyer, one should not completely trust the manufacturer’s inspection report. Therefore, buyer’s QA representative needs to do the shipment inspection after complete shipment is packed by the supplier factory.

Quality control

As a buyer or quality assurance personnel or shipment auditor, you need to follow a quality control checklist for ensuring everything is covered during the inspection process. Assessment of the product quality should be done unbiased. A quality checklist is very helpful in this regard.

In the post, I will show you the quality control checklist those need to be followed for product sourcing. While doing a quality inspection of the shipment, various parameters are considered to ensure the product quality, packaging quality, and product safety.

Quality Control Checklist

1. Workmanship and stitching quality

Through stitching, process fabric is converted into garments. Therefore, the stitching quality must be as per the standards.
  • The workmanship of the garment is as per the approved sample
  • Check no open seam
  • Check for jump stitch
  • No undesired puckering in the seam lines
  • In case different fabrics are used in the garment, check fabric quality and color combination is correct
  • Check whether correct thread size and thread color are used for stitching or not
  • All trims and accessories (like drawstrings, beads) are attached to the garment as per safety norms.

2. Visual Inspection

In the visual inspection cover following points
  • Check if the garment is balanced (left and right side of the garment) and falls properly when holding with two hands.
  • There is no twisting in the garment 
  • Check all labels (main label, size label, care label and special label) are attached as per instruction - at the right place
  • Text and print layout in the content label and care label are matched with the buyer approved labels. 
  • Size label - Check the garment size and the label is matching
  • All trims and fasteners are secured and attached right place.
  • Print and embroidery (if applicable) placement are as per the design.
  • No undesired stain, oil mark, chalk mark, pressing mark, and soiling is there on the garments (invisible zones).

3. Fabric and raw material quality report

You may also need to check the quality of the trims. For this follow the fabric and trims test report.
  • All the fabric, lining, and material used in the garments are as per approved design
  • Compared trims details against the approved trim card.
  • Check the fabric quality test report (FPT and GPT) for the order you are inspecting – parameters like - fabric GSM, fabric weight, color fastness properties, seam slippage, button pulling strength, dimensional stability, fabric shrinkage user limit (whichever is applicable for the shipment. 
  • Compare the print and embroidery work with the approved samples (swatch)
  • If you found shade different between garments, look at approved shade band and compared that all shades are within the approved fabric shade bands 
  • Do a visual inspection for any kind of defects
  • There should not be an iron mark (shiny mark) and should not be an unwanted crease on the pressed garments.
  • Measurement checking - check the measurement of all sizes of garments. If there is measurement variation in some point of measure (POM) compared to the spec sheet, it must be within the tolerance level
  • If required check the garment fit in a dress form
  • In case pattern matching is required (for prints, stripes, check patterns) – check it is under allowance
  • Check garment hand feels and washing quality (if applicable) are as per standards. 

4. Garment Packing

Follow this checklist for checking garment packing. If available refer to the approved packed garment. 
  • Packing list - check the complete packing list and verify whether packing is done as per buyer’s instruction. 
  • Garments are folded as per specified dimensions
  • All tags and stickers on the tags are correct
  • Garments are packed as per buyer size ratio (if the buyer asked for a ratio packing). correct poly bag size and poly bag material are used.
  • All garments are passed through broken needle detection machine (metal detection machine) – if applicable

5. Carton box quality and labeling:

  • Carton quality – check carton quality for its size and cardboard strength. Carton shape and no space inside the carton. 
  • The carton labeling should be checked thoroughly. Check all the required information and carton number is there.
  • All carton boxes are closed with tape (as per standard packing)
Also Read: 17 Tips to improve garment quality

The above checklist is a primary guide for quality inspection of the shipment. Follow the detailed inspection instruction from the buyer’s quality manual (if available). The same quality control checklist can be used during internal quality checking and quality inspection.

A checklist for quality control saves time and improve productivity in the inspection process. This checklist is a part of the inspection process and but the complete inspection procedure.

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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