Just a bit of silliness (too busy today!) inspired by a back and forth with one of you (Jennifer) who is constantly frustrated by terminology in the apparel industry. The confusion always makes me laugh because it’s so incredibly counter productive (better to laugh than become frustrated) but it is so true that terminology usage in the trade varies so much and if you don’t know it, you’re out. Like that Heidi Klum lady says. By the way, we watched that show last night. Boring! And what’s with her hair? And that other young man’s hair (the skinny one) is awful too. My scissor hand was itching. And what’s with all these gay men in the show? Speaking of real life in the apparel industry, there aren’t as many gay men as you’d be led to believe from watching this show. Pandering to stereotypes me thinks. And hopefully you know me well enough to know I’m not prejudiced, I’m just noting an anomaly.
Anyway, Jennifer says she always has to make mental adjustments when I write. When I say “cutter’s must” or “direction card” (the latter is hardwired, sorry) she knows this as a “piece report”. Thanks to CAD programs. They’ve changed a lot of our words. You’d think they would just have adopted terms we were already using. Here’s all the terms used to describe that card thingy you hang with your pattern (photo):
- piece report
- piece inventory
- cutter’s must
- direction card
- pattern card
Here’s some more confusion for you. Technically, a direction card or a pattern card isn’t a cutter’s must but most cutters will be satisfied with one in substitution if it’s a small cut order. Have anything to add here? I can amend this entry.
A big source of terminology confusion -laughing out loud now- is this ubiquitous component used to stabilize goods (interchangeable):
- pellon (brand)
By the way, you can tell if someone’s old school because they’ll call interfacing “canvas”. It hearkens from before interfacing had heat set glues to attach them. We used (some of us still do) varying weights of actual canvas, sometimes horse hair, goat hair and even starched cottons to reinforce pieces. When fusibles came along, the name remained canvas to refer to the concept of structural reinforcement. I’m probably one of the worst about this. Jennifer says:
For me the canvas thing would not be so confusing if I had not been a factory making canvas work wear – seriously it can be confusing. This is a typical phone conversation:
Cutter: Which canvas do want us to use for this sample cut?
Jennifer: The 10oz like for the 6035.
Cutter: There is no canvas on the 6035.
Jennifer: The sample cut is a canvas pant.
Cutter: Not the shell, the canvas.
Jennifer: Oh, pellon. The same as 6050.
Cutter : Okay.
Have anything to add? Okay, here’s another fun one, these are all the same thing:
The first term is mostly used in the apparel industry (again, old school) so named for the only machine that used to make them. Patent expired, now lots of companies have their own versions but reece still stuck. The second term (welt) is more than acceptable but you need to know reece too. The last two terms are mostly used by English tailors.
These terms describe marking paper. I don’t have a photo but it’s a rolled paper of varying widths, with little blue dots, numbers or letters posed in a one inch grid all over it.
- marker or marking paper
- 1 by 5 paper
- pattern paper
- dot (or dotted) paper
- alpha-numeric paper
It’s called marking paper because it used to be used to make markers, some still do although it’s pricier than plotter paper and one doesn’t plot on this stuff. It’s quite handy, many use it to lay out a pattern to calculate the allocation of a style. I’ve always called it “1 by 5 paper” and always got strange looks but I was habituated to that from school. I’ve never heard anyone else use the term but then the other day, I saw the term used in one of the Cooklin books (English drafting texts) so I’m guessing my old profs learned it somehow that way. Maybe it’s an even older old school term. But it’s silly because the dots run more than five and there’s also letters. Off topic (as though it’d matter), I see that the English have dotted/gridded oak tag. My my my, that would be lovely to have! Oh, one last thing. Many enthusiasts call this pattern paper but it is not. Oak tag is the only pattern paper. If that’s not enough to confuse you, oak tag is also known as (other than pattern paper) paper tag, rope tag, green-back, 1X (or 2X, 3X) paper.
Ack. I’m running late and have to finish this tomorrow. In the meantime, add your two cents for confusing terminology so I can add it to the mix. Thanks!