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How Do I Become a Dressmaker?

Dressmakers often specialize in one type of garment, such as wedding dresses.
Dressmakers may need to know how to sew buttons onto garments.
Dressmakers must be adept at constructing and altering customized clothing.
Dressmakers could have an online business where users could purchase clothing from their smartphones or computers.
Dressmakers may want to consider having a website where their consumers can browse and purchase online.
Some dressmakers work from their own home.
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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 19 October 2014
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If you want to become a dressmaker, you won't necessarily need formal education and training. However, you must have excellent sewing skills, plus the ability to produce flawless garments on a consistent basis. Assisting a dressmaker or doing alterations in a bridal shop or dry cleaning store are possible ways to earn experience before you work as a a dressmaker in your own business.

Some dressmakers work from their own home providing custom-made clothing. A dressmaker may specialize in one type of garment, such as wedding dresses, coats or suits. Owning a dressmaking shop is another possibility if you hope to become a dressmaker. If you'll be running your own company from your home or in a store you lease, you'll need to learn business skills either through research or formal courses. Learning to create a business plan should be the first step, as this will help you create your dressmaking company and identify your customer base.

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Thinking and planning your dressmaking around your potential clients is essential if you hope to become a dressmaker and stay in business. Keeping up with fashion trends is important, as is being able to sew for different body types. Understanding your client's wardrobe needs and budget is crucial. It's necessary to find out what the need is for dressmaking skills and be able to fill it if you want to work as a dressmaker working in your community. You'll need a definite market to target since most people today buy ready-made clothing from retail stores.

Sewing stylish clothes for people who have difficulty finding their size in stores may be a good target market if you want to become a dressmaker. You could even have an e-commerce business and process customer orders through your company's website. Making garments for little people or full-figured people could be your specialty. Offering a full range of wardrobe pieces such as shirts, pants, suits, coats, dresses, skirts and blouses would provide a good customer selection, while still keeping your overhead costs low since you'll be sewing to order.

Having dressmaking mannequin forms, or dummies, in the sizes of your clients is necessary. You'll have to carefully consider your supplies if you want to become a dressmaker. Sewing machines are expensive and you'll need to have good quality ones made for commercial use if you plan on a full-time dressmaking business. Wearing clothes you've made yourself is a good way of advertising your skills to potential clients, as is making clothes for friends and relatives.

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sunnySkys
Post 4

@strawCake - Learning how to sew formal wear is a valuable skill. My mother sewed her own wedding dress both times she got married, and she saved herself a bundle of money. Also, both of her dresses were very lovely.

That said, I think it would be good to make sure you know how to do everything if you want to be a dressmaker. Most weddings take place in the summer-you need to know how to sew other kinds of clothes for the rest of the year!

strawCake
Post 3

I think if you want to become a dressmaker, it would be smart to specialize in wedding and formal wear. As the article said, most people just buy ready to wear clothes these days.

But weddings are never going to go out of style! Brides will always be seeking that "perfect dress" and the rest of the wedding party needs clothes too! If you can sew or alter wedding attire, I think you could have a really successful business.

Sara007
Post 2

There are benefits to becoming a dressmaker even if you don't plan on making it an actual business. I have a couple of girls and I love to put them in pretty outfits, but it can get very expensive if I constantly have to buy them new clothes.

What I did to solve my fashion problem was learn how to sew. I took a class offered by my church and was really happy with how easy it was to make simple, but cute dresses for my kids. It saves me a small fortune to be able to just make the things they want to wear.

My kids also love my ability to sew, because when Halloween rolls around they always have the best costumes out of their friends.

manykitties2
Post 1

My best friend wanted to become a dressmaker so she went to college for fashion arts. She was able to learn how to sew and design a variety of clothing, not just dresses. What was even better was that she learned a variety of cost-saving techniques, such as how to make her own dressmaker form.

I think one of the best things about having a friend who is a dressmaker is being able to get great clothing made at cost. My friend is always working on things for her portfolio, so if I need something for an event I just get her to make me something similar to a picture I find in a magazine. It is really fantastic.

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