In our defects blog series, we have so far covered the defects occurring in knitted and woven fabrics and also in embroidery. Now, we are going to take up the defects that occur in our final garments, and how can we control or correct them.
Garment defects can be caused due to the use of defective fabric, workmanship defects, and handling defects, and due to the defects in the trims and accessories being used in the garment.
1. Fabric defects: Part of the defects occurring in the final garment could be caused due to the defects in the fabric being used. In our previous articles, we have discussed the defects in knitted fabric and defects in woven fabric, their causes and possible remedies in depth.
2. Workmanship & handling defects: Garment manufacturing is a long process compromising of various stages, pattern making, spreading, cutting, sewing and finishing. Hence, defects can creep in any of or all of these stages, so we need to stay vigilant at each of these stages to ensure the desired quality of the final garment.
There is a variety of workmanship and handling defects that occur commonly in garments:
Pattern stage: There are various defects in patterns that mark the garment quality. At times patterns or parts of the patterns can be missing from the marker, or if the marker wasn’t correctly labeled, we can end up with mixed garment parts, which can lead to garments with the wrong size of parts. In napped fabrics, if patterns are not facing the right direction, garment design can be compromised.
Pattern not properly aligned to fabric’s grain line, or poor line definition can lead to inaccurate cutting. Skimpy marking to better utilize the fabric by not using the patterns’ outside edge for cutting, or moving pattern to squeeze into smaller spaces, can lead to patterns with worn out edges or faulty and wrong sized parts, which leads to puckering or pleating when the garment parts are sewn together as they are not of correct sizes. Missing or displaced notches and drill marks, not enough knife clearance, wrong check matching, or wrong check boxing, all can hamper the quality of the final garment.
Spreading stage: Narrow fabric lay, misaligned plies, or not enough plies, all can lead to missing bits in the garment parts. Incorrect ply tension leads to size variations in the parts. Also, while spreading, incorrect ply direction, splicing errors, distortion in lay due to static between plies can lead to incorrect cutting, especially if the fabric has checks or stripes.
Cutting Stage: Failure to precisely follow the marker lines, leaning straight knife while cutting, using round knife on a considerably high speed, misplaced or incorrect notches and drill marks, frayed or fused edges due to blunt knife, faulty marker placement, etc. lead to distorted garment parts or missing bits which leads to quality issues at later stages.
Some of the defects that occur due to faulty workmanship and handling are:
• Shade variation:
• Seam puckering: Bunching of fabric in a seam is seam puckering.
• Open or broken seams: Openings or unstitched parts in seams.
• Broken stitches:
• Skipped stitches: Irregular stitches along the seam.
• Wavy seam: Wavy Seam occurs when the seam is not straight.
• Misaligned buttons and buttonholes:
• Untrimmed threads: Extra lose thread appearing along the seam.
• Out of tolerance sizing: The dimensions or measurements of the garment parts are not within the tolerance limits defined by the buyer.
3. Trims & Accessory defects: At times the use of wrong color or size of trims or embroidery or wrong placement of the same can also make the garment defective.
The defects that can appear in embroidery have been discussed in depth in our previous blog of this series “Embroidery Defects” (LINK). Other than embroidery defects some of the other commonly occurring trim defects are:
• Broken Trim: Use of broken or inoperable trim or if the trim is insecure.
• Wrong trim: The trim used differs in color or size, or might be missing when compared against the buyer’s specification.
• Trim Bleeding:
With the knowledge of the commonly occurring defects and their causes and remedies, we can take measures to alleviate the risks of quality fallouts in our orders. Keeping the above pointers in mind, we can align the quality inspection process in our factories to produce quality output.