Summary Report for:
51-6052.00 - Tailors, Dressmakers, and Custom Sewers
Design, make, alter, repair, or fit garments.
Sample of reported job titles: Alterations Expert, Alterations Sewer, Bridal Designer, Clothing Pattern Designer, Custom Dressmaker, Custom Sewer, Custom Tailor, Dressmaker, Seamstress, Tailor
Tasks | Technology Skills | Tools Used | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Measure parts, such as sleeves or pant legs, and mark or pin-fold alteration lines.
- Remove stitches from garments to be altered, using rippers or razor blades.
- Sew garments, using needles and thread or sewing machines.
- Let out or take in seams in suits and other garments to improve fit.
- Measure customers, using tape measures, and record measurements.
- Fit and study garments on customers to determine required alterations.
- Trim excess material, using scissors.
- Assemble garment parts and join parts with basting stitches, using needles and thread or sewing machines.
- Make garment style changes, such as tapering pant legs, narrowing lapels, and adding or removing padding.
- Maintain garment drape and proportions as alterations are performed.
- Take up or let down hems to shorten or lengthen garment parts, such as sleeves.
- Repair or replace defective garment parts, such as pockets, zippers, snaps, buttons, and linings.
- Press garments, using hand irons or pressing machines.
- Fit, alter, repair, and make made-to-measure clothing, according to customers' and clothing manufacturers' specifications and fit, and applying principles of garment design, construction, and styling.
- Estimate how much a garment will cost to make, based on factors such as time and material requirements.
- Position patterns of garment parts on fabric, and cut fabric along outlines, using scissors.
- Record required alterations and instructions on tags, and attach them to garments.
- Confer with customers to determine types of material and garment styles desired.
- Examine tags on garments to determine alterations that are needed.
- Develop, copy, or adapt designs for garments, and design patterns to fit measurements, applying knowledge of garment design, construction, styling, and fabric.
- Put in padding and shaping materials.
- Sew buttonholes and attach buttons to finish garments.
- Accounting software — Bookkeeping software
- Computer aided design CAD software — Garment design software
- Customer relationship management CRM software — Tailor Master
- Inventory management software — Inventory tracking software
- Office suite software — Microsoft Office
- Point of sale POS software — ArbelSoft TailorMax
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
- Word processing software — Google Docs ; Microsoft Word
Hot Technology — a technology requirement frequently included in employer job postings.
- Buttonhole machines — Buttonhole makers
- Curves — French curves
- Desktop computers
- Domestic clothing irons — Steam irons
- Dressmakers ruler — Tailoring rulers
- Fabric or tailors chalk holders — Chalk pencil holders
- Full body form or mannequin — Dress forms
- Ironing boards — Sleeve boards
- Ironing machines or presses — Ironing presses
- Laser printers — Computer laser printers
- Protective gloves — Pressing mitts
- Razor knives
- Rotary paper or fabric cutter — Rotary fabric cutters
- Rulers — Transparent rulers
- Safety pins — Coiless safety pins
- Seam gauge — Seam measurement gauges
- Seam ripper — Seam rippers
- Serrated pattern tracing wheel — Serrated pattern tracing wheels
- Sewing kits — Point turners; Seam creasers
- Sewing machines — Blind stitching machines; Chain stitching machines; Computerized sewing machines; Industrial sewing machines
- Sewing needles
- Sewing patterns — Seam rolls; Tailor's hams
- Shears — Dressmakers shears; Fabric machines; Pinking shears; Tailor's point scissors
- Steam pressing machines — Steam fabric pressing machines
- Straight pins — Steel straight pins
- Tape measures — Measuring tapes
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Production and Processing — Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
- Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- Economics and Accounting — Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
- Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
- Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
- Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Control Precision — The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
- Manual Dexterity — The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Originality — The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
Detailed Work Activities
- Repair textiles or apparel.
- Measure materials to mark reference points, cutting lines, or other indicators.
- Sew clothing or other articles.
- Operate sewing equipment.
- Measure clients to ensure proper product fit.
- Record operational or production data.
- Trim excess material from workpieces.
- Adjust fabrics or other materials during garment production.
- Smooth garments with irons, presses, or steamers.
- Estimate costs of products, services, or materials.
- Cut fabrics.
- Position patterns on equipment, materials, or workpieces.
- Confer with customers or designers to determine order specifications.
- Mark products, workpieces, or equipment with identifying information.
- Design templates or patterns.
- Read work orders or other instructions to determine product specifications or materials requirements.
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 95% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 66% responded “Extremely important.”
- Time Pressure — 79% responded “Every day.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 58% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 83% responded “Every day.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 72% responded “Very important results.”
- Telephone — 61% responded “Every day.”
- Deal With External Customers — 50% responded “Extremely important.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 25% responded “Some freedom.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 59% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Sitting — 54% responded “More than half the time.”
- Contact With Others — 48% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 60% responded “Every day.”
- Pace Determined by Speed of Equipment — 40% responded “Extremely important.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 47% responded “Extremely important.”
- Physical Proximity — 41% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 37% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 36% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 43% responded “More than 40 hours.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 31% responded “Extremely important.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 37% responded “Not important at all.”
- Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 32% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- Consequence of Error — 29% responded “Not serious at all.”
|Title||Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed|
|Education||These occupations usually require a high school diploma.|
|Related Experience||Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include orderlies, counter and rental clerks, customer service representatives, security guards, upholsterers, and tellers.|
|SVP Range||(4.0 to < 6.0)|
Interest code: RAE Want to discover your interests? Take the O*NET Interest Profiler at My Next Move.
- Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
- Artistic — Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
- Enterprising — Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
- Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2020)||$15.69 hourly, $32,640 annual|
|Employment (2019)||37,300 employees|
|Projected growth (2019-2029)||Decline (-1% or lower)|
|Projected job openings (2019-2029)||4,300|
|Top industries (2019)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2020 wage data and 2019-2029 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2019-2029). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.