When you are new to the fashion industry, you will quickly notice that designing a collection is more than just having good taste in clothes. In order to create a solid brand you will have to know about multiple topics that you maybe didn’t think of. Designing can be a challenging process with many steps that you need to be aware of, and technical knowledge can be very handy. From selecting fabrics, reviewing trends to pattern making, sampling and sewing. In order to go from design to real product there is one very important step that can make or break the end result: the tech pack. As some people may know, a good and complete tech pack can save you a lot of headaches, time and money, and as a beginner it can also be quite intimidating. That’s why it’s worth your time to learn the ABC of how to make a solid tech pack.
But first what is a tech pack?
A tech pack is an informative digital document created usually by designers that helps them communicate with a manufacturer about how a specific design needs to be constructed. The more detailed a tech pack is, the less room there is for error and self interpretation.
Why do I need a tech pack?
There are many benefits that come with a clear tech pack, but the main perks are:
- Ensure clear communication with your manufacturer
- It saves you time, energy and money
- You will receive accurate quotations from your manufacturer
To create a complete and professional tech pack there are some elements that can’t miss.
At the top of each page you should place your company’s logo and some basic information such as the style number, date, sample size, season of the collection, fabrics that are going to be used and a little description of the garment.
A second element that should be present in each page is the technical drawing or sketch. This is a 2 dimensional drawing in black lines of the garment in front, back and even side view.
The design is usually drawn in a proporsional 1:10 dimension, and you can use straight lines for the contour of the item and dotted lines for the stitches. You can also add the tags and labels with their respective placement into the drawing. Don’t forget to add the design and placement of any embroidery or print you may have.
After you are done with the basics you can proceed with the different kinds of tech packs. If your garment has a very simple design, for example a white t-shirt, you won’t need a lot of specifications. Maybe all the information will fit into 1 or 2 pages, but generally several different sheets are needed to explain every aspect of the design.
Size and measurements sheet
Even though your technical drawing is drawn in a 1:10 proportion, it is still advised to add all the measurements of the garment. Basic size measurements such as bust, waist and hip contour, length and width can be added in a chart. Don’t forget to add the dimensions of any details such as pockets, splits or length of straps. If for example you designed a dress with straps and a lower back it is important to mention the total length of the dress, the length of the straps and at what height the back should close. Nothing should be left to the imagination of the manufacturer, even though in your eyes it would be a standard number.
In this sheet it is important to highlight which kind of stitch you would like in each part of the garment. There are a lot of different stitches that will give you very different looks, such as a straight stitch, zigzag stitch, stretch stitch, overlock stitch (2/3/4/5 threads), buttonhole stitch and the list goes on and on. It is very important to be informed about the options in order to receive the product that you are hoping for. Don’t know how a stitch is called? Maybe you’ve seen it on another item that you own. Take a zoomed in picture of the stitch and add it to the tech pack with an arrow to where you would like that stitch to be.
The name says it all, in this type of sheet you will dive deeper into the details of the garment. For this you can create some zoomed in technical drawings for each specific detail. Think of hems, buttons, zippers, pockets, pleats etc. Be as detailed as possible in describing each part of the garment. Add reference pictures to be even more accurate with what you would want.
BOM stands for bill of materials, a sheet where you will place all the materials that you will need to use in order to produce this garment. Think of fabrics and their color variations, lining, interlining, buttons, zippers, ribbons, elastics etc. Add color codes or specific fabric names so that there are no confusions and you receive the right sample.
Embroidery and print sheet
This is a sheet that is only necessary when you have embroidery, prints or any extra embellishments in your design. You may have to send it to a different manufacturer, depending on what services they offer. On this page you will have to specify the size, placement, colors (with codes) and variations and of course the design of the embroidery or print self.
Tags and packaging sheet
Last but not least, you will have to create a sheet to indicate where the tags and composition labels should be located, what the measurements of them are and in which form you would want them (embroidered, printed, sublimated etc.). It is important to be aware of the end functionality of the garment. For example a blouse usually has a logo and a size label made out of fabric placed on the back. As for instance sportswear items usually have printed or sublimated labels for more comfort. If your manufacturer also delivers your garments with your own packaging, such as plastic wraps, bags or boxes you can add those specifics in this sheet.
Most designers prefer to use Adobe Illustrator when creating tech packs and technical drawings. They will create templates for every type of sheet, so it is easier and quicker to create a new version. When you register at Manufy as a buyer or brand, and you want to place a quotation request you will need to upload your tech packs in order to receive a bid. Without this it is impossible for a manufacturer to understand what you are looking for, and therefore can’t be sure on what to bid on. Do you still have questions on how to create the best tech pack for your design? We will happily help you along! Send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with subject tech packs. With a little effort, knowledge and creativity you will be on your way to create high quality garments!