Pop Quiz: Are you a manufacturing expert?

Today was one of those days where I was busy all day long and didn’t seem to get anything done. I’m sure everyone has days like that. Mostly I did some site work; that is never ending and goes on in the background. It’s usually seamless unless I really louse it up. Anyway, in the process of uploading some forms from my book so they can be modified by users electronically, I came across this little quiz I had stuck in the back of my book. How well will you do on it?  I think I’ll select a winner from entries in comments and give away a copy of my book as a prize. Won’t that be fun? The drawing will be random, winner to be selected next Monday June 1st at 12:00 or thereabouts. I think random is best because someone who gets everything right doesn’t need the book and if I gave it to the worst performer, people might not do their best.

True or False:

  1. A product is high quality if you use expensive fabrics and buttons.
  2. If products are ruined at the dry cleaners, it’s nearly always the dry cleaners fault.
  3. If products shrink when they’re washed, it’s due to defective or low quality textiles.
  4. If a retailer won’t buy your products, it’s because they have really lousy taste.
  5. It’s okay to name your designs because you’re a very small company and this rule doesn’t apply to you. Besides, numbers are too “corporate”.
  6. To make sure and fast money, you should grab all the department store accounts you’re offered.
  7. It’s a good idea for start-ups to make several kinds of products (like purses and swimsuits) in order to increase over-all selling possibilities.
  8. Family and friends are good judges of your design ideas; they’ll know which are the best bets.
  9. You must be careful when ordering fabrics or using trade services; this is how ideas are stolen.
  10. You don’t need to pre-test your fabrics because you’ve been working with this kind of fabric long enough to know how it will perform.
  11. You can patent your design ideas.
  12. You can tell if a pattern maker is good with an interview and college transcripts.
  13. Sewing contractors have high minimums; it’s impossible to have just one item made.
  14. If a product is ordered at market, you must manufacture it or you will lose customers.
  15. It’s fine to use store-bought patterns since no one can tell and it saves a lot of money.
  16. As the company owner, people should just do what you tell them with no questions asked.
  17. If trade people won’t quote prices, it’s because they’re trying to guess how much money you have, so they can get more of it.
  18. It’s okay to cut and sew the items before you have any orders.
  19. The rules don’t apply to you because you’re a one person company and you do everything yourself.

Who is at fault if…

  • The stripes don’t match.
  • Pockets are crooked.
  • Too much fabric is wasted.
  • Sleeve caps pucker.
  • Costs too much to sew.
  • Vest points curl up.
  • Collars won’t line up correctly.

What are the three basic stages of manufacturing?

General questions:

  1. What is a style number?
  2. What’s the difference between a sloper and a block?
  3. CM&T means C_____ ,  M______ & T______ .
  4. What is a marker?
  5. What is allocation?
  6. What is a stock or base size and what size is it?
  7. What is grading?
  8. What is a prototype?
  9. What is torquing?
  10. In which stage of manufacturing are patterns graded?

Related entries:
Answers to this quiz are in part two.

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  1. Dawn B says:

    1-19 False
    Who is at fault if…the DE (and the patternmaker)

    What are the three basic stages of manufacturing?
    1. make patterns and samples
    2. take orders
    3. manufacture

    General questions:
    What is a style number? numeric identifier for each garment
    sloper=home sewing base pattern w/out seam allowances; block=base pattern with seam allowances to use for multiple styles
    CM&T means Cut , Make & Trim .
    What is a marker? pattern layout on a length of fabric
    What is allocation? amount of fabric needed
    What is a stock or base size and what size is it? the medium or mid-size in the line
    What is grading? adjusting the base size to smaller and larger sizes
    What is a prototype? a sample garment or item
    What is torquing? twisting of the fabric due to being cut off-grain
    In which stage of manufacturing are patterns graded? after orders are placed (#2 above)

  2. Marilyn Brandon says:

    Okay, I’m probably the greenest kid here, but I’ll bite.

    1-19 are all False.

    As far as who is at fault if the next seven things listed happen, I’d say that
    I am, because it’s my responsibility to see that these things DON’T happen.

    As for the three stages of manufacturing, I’d say planning, sourcing, and production.

    A style number identifies a particular garment design. If I remember correctly, it shouldn’t be more than four numbers long, ideally, and you do need a separate style number for each colorway or for every style variation. Style numbers should be relevant so that you can easily identify the garment based on the style number, even if it was produced several seasons earlier.

    I believe that a sloper is what home sewers call their basic blocks. A block is your basic pattern that your other styles are created from. No matter how many styles I produce, I always refer back to my basic blocks for fit and create any new styles from those.

    CM and T means Cut, Make, and Trim.

    A marker is the paper layout that guides the cutter in cutting your styles so that fabric is utilized to it’s full capacity, minimizing waste.

    Allocation….I think allocation is the amount of yardage and number of inputs to create a garment or run of garments?

    Stock size is medium.

    Grading is increasing or decreasing the size of your pattern, working from your medium base size.

    A prototype is a sew out of your sample garment using the fabric that you’ll actually produce it in.

    Torquing is when the fabric twists…like when your side seams on your jeans or shirts end up twisted to the front or back. I think I remember someone saying this is caused by the way the fabric is rolled onto the bolt or maybe how it was woven.

    Patterns are graded AFTER orders are taken so that you don’t go to the expense of grading, and then possibly end up dropping that style.

    I’m not trying to win the book, as I already have it. Not that I think I would actually win this one, lol. Just thought I’d see if I’m retaining anything that you all are trying to teach me!

    Marilyn Brandon
    Kanga Bay, LLC

  3. Malissa says:

    who is at fault…the person who was to dot the i’s and cross the t’s
    What are the three basic stages of manufacturing?pattern/ samples, market/orders, production/shipping

    1. What is a style number?note to DE tells them which pice when made and what fabric
    2. What’s the difference between a sloper and a block?sloper basic fit and block is a tried and true pattern for a line
    3. CM&T means C_____ , M______ & T______ . Ican’t remember
    4. What is a marker?layout of how to cut a pattern
    5. What is allocation?I can’t remember
    6. What is a stock or base size and what size is it?your customers medium
    7. What is grading?making a size run
    8. What is a prototype? a sample in actual fabric
    9. What is torquing?off grain
    10. In which stage of manufacturing are patterns graded?after orders are placed and there is enough orders to produce the garment

  4. Barb Taylorr says:

    1-9 all false
    at fault – pattern-maker
    stages: sample (design development)
    1. style identifier
    2. sloper, basic pattern guide for one size – block, same, but includes all sizes
    3. cut and make
    4. how the pieces are laid out on the fabric to get the best yield
    5. materials assigned to an complete an order
    6. Size used when developing proto sample and determining first fit
    7. Formula for how each measurement grows between sizes
    8. First sample
    9. twisted, skewed, grain des not hang right
    10. pre-production

  5. Luci says:

    I’ve been coveting the book for a long time, so I’ll enter. But I badly need the book to know some of these answers. That being said, even I can tell the first 19 are all false! The owner of the collection is ultimately responsible for all mistakes, and torqued is what you get when things just don’t go your way. As in “I was torqued when the fabric shrunk 20%!!” :-)

  6. celeste says:

    8. false – but don’t let my mom see this
    10. although tempting i’ll say false

    whose fault – mine, because no matter who makes the mistake I need to make sure its fixed, and oversee the process

    3 stages

    this is the part, that shows why I need the book :)

    1.What is a style number? the number assigned to a design
    2.What’s the difference between a sloper and a block? a block is a basic pattern from which paterns are made, a sloper is a basic for a person
    3.CM&T means C_____ , M______ & T______ . cut, mark, and?
    4.What is a marker? cutting layout
    5.What is allocation? ???????
    6.What is a stock or base size and what size is it? the size from which your patterns will be graded (up or down), i’m sure there is an indusrty standard, but could be whatever you want it to be
    7.What is grading? making smaller or larger sizes based on your stock size
    8.What is a prototype? sample/mock-up
    9.What is torquing? i dont know
    10.In which stage of manufacturing are patterns graded? pre-production

  7. dosfashionistas says:

    I’m not going to do all the answers because I don’t have time today and I have the book already anyway. I just wanted to say…..I have 44 years in the garment business, and there were a couple of the questions I would have had to look up the answers to, in Kathleen’s book, of course.

    Have a great weekend all!

  8. Mary Anne Benedetto says:

    I know my answers will be way off base, but I’m looking for a career change, so here it goes.
    1-19 false
    It’s your line, so it’s your problem if things aren’t right
    Design, Sell, Produce
    Style # – Identifier for each garment style
    In my world CM & T are cost management and taxes
    A marker is something you color with
    Allocation – asset allocation between stocks & bonds
    Stock Size – whatever size works for you
    Grading is what Professors do
    A prototype is a sample
    It’s Friday getting torqued is what I plan to do after work!
    In what stage of manufacturing are patterns graded – I don’t know ask a professor
    As you can see I really need your book, so hopefully this entry will make the cut.
    Have a great weekend

  9. Alicia Hahn says:

    I’m a fashion student from Australia, I have just discovered your page. the book sounds excellent. I will be recommending it to fellow students and lecturers. I apologize if any terminology does not translate, here goes!
    1-19 false
    Who is at fault if…
    * The stripes don’t match. A) Designer for not specifying
    * Pockets are crooked. A) pattern maker
    * Too much fabric is wasted. A) pattern maker, or marker maker
    * Sleeve caps pucker. A) pattern maker
    * Costs too much to sew. A) pattern maker
    * Vest points curl up. A) pattern maker
    * Collars won’t line up correctly. A) pattern maker

    What are the three basic stages of manufacturing?
    1. planning
    2. construction
    3. dispatch

    General questions:

    1) a numerical code which defines each particular style (sample garment) to be produced, used in all paperwork and components (patterns) referring to that style.
    2)not sure about this one
    3) cut make trim
    4) like a jigsaw puzzle, the plan of how the pattern pieces are going to be laid out on the fabric prior to cutting, creating the least waste possible.
    5) again not sure about this one
    6) the size in which all sample prototypes are created, the same size of the fit model and blocks
    7) the process of increasing or decreasing the size of the base garment to a specific set of size measurements, while still retaining the features associated with the sample garment.
    8) the ‘first’ (after alterations) garment, or approved sample, identical garments will be made in production to the standard of this garment
    9)just a guess, torquing is when the garment has been cut off grain, and it twists after the first wash?
    10) grading happens after the final sealed sample approval by the manufacturer and designer/company

    well, I hope I have not embarrassed myself with my ignorance!

  10. irene says:

    I’m going to go with…

    1-19 false

    Who is at fault: the patternmaker and marker maker… although “costs too much to sew” seems like it could be a design or sourcing problem, too.

    3 stages:
    1. planning/sampling/sourcing
    2. write orders
    3. production

    general questions:
    1. A style number is a unique number that identifies a garment according to its pattern–the same garment made in a different fabric still needs a new style number if the pattern is even slightly different.
    2. Not sure, but I think a sloper is specifically the most basic darted pattern shape, while you can have various blocks–princess seam blocks, raglan blocks, etc.
    3. Cut, Make, Trim.
    4. The layout of all the pattern pieces necessary from that specific lay of fabric… they’re all arranged by grain and fit together as efficiently as possible.
    5. Allocation… I don’t know! I would guess it involves sourcing the different materials and trims needed, but not sure.
    6. The size from which other sizes are graded, either up or down. The base size varies but is generally near the center of the size range.
    7. Increasing the pattern’s dimensions to obtain larger and smaller sizes than the base size.
    8. A prototype is a sample, and suggests to me at least that it’s a sample to be used as reference for production more than as a selling tool. Is this true?
    9. I think torquing is when the grain on the bolt is skewed… or more accurately, when the crossgrain is skewed so it’s no longer perpendicular to grain. If this is what torquing is, it’s annoying.
    10. After the sample of the base size has been made up, checked, adjusted, and perfected. Or before, if you’re using CAD. =)

  11. Maggie Smith says:

    1. F
    2. T
    3. F
    4. F
    5. T
    6. F
    7. F
    8. T
    9. F
    10. F
    11. F
    12. F
    13. T
    14. F
    15. F
    16. F
    17. F
    18. T
    19. F

    As I work by myself then EVERYTHING would be my fault

    1. design
    2. costing
    3 marketing

    1. design identification
    2. sloper – making a pattern curve
    block – for pressing
    3. cost, manufacture, and ?
    4. for marking on fabric to match up when sewing the garment together
    5. ?
    6. whatever size you decide it should be
    7. pattern sizes
    8. sample
    9. something to do with the grain?
    10. when you are happy with the design you make the pattern in multiple sizes (if you are using a pattern maker then it would be more economical to have this all done at the same time)

  12. Ann says:

    Looks like most answers are covered…
    Just checking my memory that allocation is the % of the fabric, as shown on the marker, that is used and not waste. One could place pattern pieces slightly off-grain for better allocation, but that could result in torquing or twisting in the garment.

  13. Amanda says:

    Wow. Most people have answered the same as me. I’d say 1-19 false. The pattern maker is at fault if, but the owner should be checking things from samples too.

    The three basic stages of manufacturing are
    1. pattern making and markers
    2. sewing
    3. shipping

    A style number is an identifier per pattern to show the manufacturer what pattern pieces go together.

    I have no clue what the difference is between a sloper and a block.

    CM&T means Cut, Make & Trim.

    A marker is placed on top of the fabric to cut out the pattern using the least amount of waste.

    I’m not sure what allocation refers to.

    A stock size is the basic size, medium, that is created to be graded. Grading is making the pattern larger or smaller for different sizes.

    A prototype is like a sample for testing what a product will look like.

    Torquing is twisting of the garment – this always happened to cheap store bought jeans for me.

    The first stage of manufacturing is when patterns are graded?

  14. lorrwill says:

    I am not ashamed to admit 99% of this is way over my head. I am just a home sewer, and not a stellar one at that. But I could benefit from the book!

  15. Valerie Burner says:

    I’ve never won anything in my life, but I would like to put myself in for the draw. I thought I had all the answers correct before opening one of Kathleen’s line sheets the other day. Out of the blue, I opened the pdf file, and there was the answer to the 3 Basic Stages of Manufacturing: 1) Design, 2) Marketing, 3) Production. I would have gotten that one wrong. These line sheets are great BTW.

  16. Cindy says:

    I’ll give it a shot! I read all of 1-19 and my answer is “false” to all. From here on out it’s my best, uneducated guess!

    Who is at fault if…

    The stripes don’t match. (the person who cut it out and forgot to match them)
    Pockets are crooked. (designer)
    Too much fabric is wasted. (designer)
    Sleeve caps pucker. (designer)
    Costs too much to sew. (?)
    Vest points curl up. (designer)
    Collars won’t line up correctly. (designer)
    What are the three basic stages of manufacturing?
    1. ?

    General questions: Yikes, I’m out of my depth entirely…

    What is a style number?
    What’s the difference between a sloper and a block?
    CM&T means C_____ , M______ & T______ .
    What is a marker?
    What is allocation?
    What is a stock or base size and what size is it?
    What is grading? increasing or decreasing the sizes on a pattern
    What is a prototype?
    What is torquing?
    In which stage of manufacturing are patterns graded?

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