How I make clothes for Swap & Strut

Step 1. Get Inspired

As cheesy as it may sound, I get inspiration from everywhere – paintings, fabrics, interior design, furniture, nature. I envision how I want my customer to feel while wearing the garments and that drives the look of the design.

Step 2. Sketch Design

This is the fun part because I dont limit myself to what’s “realistic.” I close my eyes, turn to what inspired me, and imagine my customer in a real life scenario, while wearing my garment and feeling her absolute best.

Step 3. Source Fabrics

This is when the desing starts coming to life. Every fabric has a certain feel and drape to it. When sourcing fabric, my main objective is to find the fabric that will meet the look, feel and drape of the design.

Step 4. Create a Flat Illustration

I create a visual representation of the garment that will detail the exact measurements of the garment, the placement of waistbands, zippers, buttons, details, etc. It’s understanding proportions and how the garment will be constructed. This is the blueprint used by my pattern maker to make the pattern.

Step 5. Get Pattern Made

My pattern maker will take my tech pack and fabrics to understand the construction of the garment. She creates a template of the design that covers the sizing and cutting of the fabric, stitching placement, and all the nitty gritty details. This is honestly the hardest part!

Step 6. Sew First Sample

My lovely pattern maker then sews the first version of my design using the pattern she created. This is the most exciting part of the process because I get to see my sketch drawing as a tangible piece for the first time!

Step 7. Test the Fit & Finalize Pattern

As soon as I receive the first sample in the mail, I run to my closet to try it on. I look to see what could be changed, how to make the garment better. What needs to be shorter/longer. Whether I can twerk in it and drop it low… I have a handful of friends try on the garment and I incorporate their feedback. I also wash the garment to make sure the fabrics don’t shrink in the wash. Changes are incorporated by my pattern maker and a new pattern is created.

Step 8. Grade the pattern to different sizes & Plot the fabric

Step 9. Cut fabric

Step 10. Sew Production Pieces

Once a final pattern is finalized, I have my seamstress sew a select number of units based on the pattern. I review all finished garments to ensure they are in their best quality for you to wear. If the garment passes the quality check, the garment goes into inventory, waiting for you to strut in it.

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