Behind The Seams: A Day in the Working Life of a Garment Scientist

Behind every piece of gorgeous clothing lies a team of talented fabric fairies, or more commonly known in modern day as Garment Technologist or Garment Scientists.

At EziBuy, we have a passionate team of talented ladies who works tirelessly throughout the year to bring to market the best items to our customers. In this series of Staff Profiles, we will give you an insight of the daily grind as a Garment Technologist. The first in this series is Suzanne Cleminson who heads the team at our Parnell office.

A Day in the Working Life of a Garment Technologist
Suzanne Cleminson, Technical Manager (Garment)

Tell us about yourself and your current role.
I have worked for EziBuy for 11 years. Prior to that, I have had a number of roles in the fashion manufacturing industry in the UK. Some of the roles were in pattern making, running a small sample room and also as a Project Manager. Currently, I am a Technical Manager overseeing 3 other Garment Technologist. My role is to ensure my team is organized working to priorities on a daily basis. We work really tight as team and everyone’s role is equally important.

What qualification and experience do you need to become a Garment Technologist.
A fashion diploma or degree is necessary for this role. Normally you would need at least 3 years experience as a trainee in the fashion industry to be a fully qualified Garment Technologist and leading to a Senior Garment Technologist.

What does a Garment Technologist do?
In a nutshell, our Fashion Buyer will pass a piece of garment after their careful selection to my team. From there, we make the garments work for EziBuy customer ensuring the fit and measurements fulfills EziBuy standards. We have a set of standard measurement for a typical fit for an Australian or New Zealand woman who is a size 12 and around 5 foot 5 tall.

What is a typical day at work for you?
I start with fitting garments in the mornings, answering emails in the afternoon this is when comments from the morning fittings will be completed.

What is the most enjoyable aspect of your work?
The most enjoyable and rewarding part of my role is to see the first fits-this is the very first garment that is manufactured to specified requirement. This is because when you have actually worked on the garment from ground up (this could be from a garment a sketch or image) to an actual finished product it is very rewarding. We aim to have a maximum of 2 fits as this is very time consuming process that can take up 2 to 3 weeks’ time.

If it fits well on our model then we can move on to approve the garment to be manufactured in bulk for the coming season.

If someone is considering a career as a Garment Technologist, what advice would you give them?
Try to get some work experience prior to making your decision as there are numerous roles in the clothing industry. This is one way choosing the right career path.

Name one item in your wardrobe this season that you cannot do without and why.
I have to say it’s the Emerge Merino Cardigan for me. It washes and wears well and a trans-seasonal piece.

Who is your fashion icon and why?
I do not have a fashion icon to tell you the truth but I have respect for all of the designers out there, each and every one. I have no specific trend so I would buy anything from Karen Walker to Ripcurl.

Anything else you’d like to add? Your proudest / unforgettable moment and what you learnt from it?
My proudest moment at EziBuy is receiving a legends award for ‘We Value Each Other‘ which I was nominated for in 2015. It was such a shock but a most memorable moment i will never forget!

What is the most sought after material this season and why?
For Summer 2016/2017, we will be seeing a lot of ‘cold shoulder’ tops & dresses. There will be heaps coming through for EziBuy. There will also be lots of beautiful prints, lace and chiffon fabrics used in the garments.