What they do
Clothing production workers mark out, cut and sew fabric. They turn design ideas and sketches into finished garments. Some of these workers will be involved in all stages of production, from marking fabric with the design through to sewing the garment together and attaching the trimmings. In larger operations, clothing production workers will specialise in one task. Regardless of their role, these workers will set-up and operate specialised machinery and examine their work after each stage, checking for damage or other defects.
Clothing production workers work in factories and workshops, usually in the Perth metropolitan region. These workshops can be loud, and hearing protection may be required. Most clothing production workers work in a team, performing one or two specialised tasks. The work can be repetitive, but concentration must be maintained to avoid damaging garments or causing injury. They usually work regular business hours during the week. However, overtime, which may include evening and weekend work, can be required to meet production deadlines, particularly during the change of seasons.
Tools and technologies
Clothing production workers may use a range of machines and equipment, which vary depending on their specific role. Much of the work is carried out by specialised machines, including sewing machines and power cutters. Smaller, hand operated equipment may also be used for some tasks, including knives, shears (scissors), needles, pens, pencils and measuring equipment. Computers and computer-aided design (CAD) software is also commonly used.
How do I become one?
Education and training
It is possible to work as a clothing production worker without any formal qualifications and get training on the job.
You can also undertake a traineeship in clothing production (level 3 or level 4).The traineeships usually take 24 to 36 months to complete.
Apprenticeships and traineeships
As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer, enabling you to complete training towards a nationally recognised qualification. You spend time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider.
You can do an apprenticeship or traineeship if you are a school-leaver, re-entering the workforce or as an adult or mature-aged person wishing to change careers. You can even begin your apprenticeship or traineeship while you're still at school.
If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.