Cutting Process in the Garment Industry (plus eBook)

Cutting processes followed by the garment factories will be discussed in this post. Fabrics are cut into garment patterns using one of the cutting aids for making garments from fabrics. I have shared a pdf document in this post compiling some of the cutting process related articles published in this blog earlier.

In the ready-made garment manufacturing, garment manufacturer mostly does cut-to-pack processes. The cutting process comes next to the fabric sourcing and prior to the stitching garments.

In the earlier post, cutting room overview explained details about various process performed in the cutting section in the garment factory. In the global apparel sourcing supply chain, garment manufacturers are called export houses and garment suppliers. Here we will see the process flow of the cutting department. The cutting process sequence is shown by arrows.

Receiving cut plan and maker plan based on work order --> Preparing cut ratio --> Receiving fabrics from fabric store (warehouse) --> Receiving pattern or markers from the CAD department --> Verify fabric approval status for quality and shade band --> prepare marker length on the cutting table (for manual marker) and marking for fabric splicing --> Spreading of fabrics --> prepare record of lay details --> Marker making/ laying CAD marker --> Cutting the fabric lay --> moving cut blocks to sorting and bundling area --> Ply numbering (placing stickers to each ply of each garment components) --> sorting and bundling --> Preparing bundling record --> Attaching bundle ticket with each bundle --> Keeping ready for issuing to stitching floor.

You need to know that the cutting processes may vary depending on the product, business type and fabric and equipment.

Nowadays most of the above cutting processes are automated. Like maker making, fabric spreading, and cutting. For increasing the cutting room productivity and reducing the manpower, garment companies are going for automation in the cutting room. Through CAD system and auto marker making, factories can save fabrics.

Depending on the fabric design and garment styling requirement, one of the many processes is followed for cutting. Like, if you are making garments (top or bottom) using striped fabric and you need to match stripes on the garment side seam and sleeve joining – you can not cut the fabric spreading flat in long marker. During the layering process, you need to match the stripes. Most cases, garment factories, for matching stripe make a single marker for these types of design. Pin table or laser beams are used for matching stripes at the time of fabric layering.

Further, the fabric layering is done following one of any methods for maintaining fabric face side, nap direction, knitted wales direction, printed pattern direction.

For cutting the fabric layers, the factory uses one of many types of equipment depending on the layer height, accuracy needed component size, availability of the cutting equipment and machine.

Other than the bulk cutting process, they also need to cut fabric using the maker for fabric consumption estimation. Optional process cutting department need to do
  • Fusing garment parts
  • Checking of panels when printing and embroidery are done on panel stage. They need to match the printed panel with other garment components before sending the bundle to the stitching department.
  • Fabric re-cutting for replacement of garment components
  • Rib cutting and piping cutting
  • Measuring and cutting tapes (if needed in the garment)
  • Counting trims, matching sizes of labels and issue to sewing department with the cutting bundles (This process is followed by some companies. But most cases, trims and accessory issued by the trim store and measuring and cutting tapes and done in stitching floor)
Related: Cutting room machine and equipment


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