Excellent Blue Prints for Design

April 15, 2016

A tech pack is the blue print for your design. In larger companies, a technical designer will work with the designer to turn their sketches in to a format that can be translated into your product. While tech packs can vary in their format, they are generally saved as PDFs.

Purpose

If you're looking the basics of your first tech pack, we summarize that here. This article is a good baseline to grade your technical design. The purpose of any blueprint is to be able to hand this document to your factory, and without saying another word, get the exact result you intended. After the sample, your team would make make calculated changes on the same document so that everyone is on the same page every step of the way.

Format

Style Description: Style ID number, description, season, designer, vendor, and date. Being organized early will allow you to reduce iterations when you want to bring a style back. Great tech packs will also include version type or number (ie. construction, prototype, salesman, production) for additional clarification

Technical Sketch: A flat drawing of the garment, most common in Adobe Illustrator. The stitch lines are in black and the garment, regardless of color, is left blank. Drawings front and back are usually included.

Call-Outs: A flat vector drawing with each of the important design details called out for the pattern maker to include. These should include different angles of the garment if necessary. It may include elongated descriptions that follow this page.

Grade Rules: A chart that specifies each of these measurements, also known as "Points of Measure" (POM for short). Grading is the extension of this chart to include all the sizes you are producing. This is the section you should be changing if any are to be changed.

Bill of Materials: This is sometimes known as the BOM. It is a list of each material you plan to use to create your garment in product ID and description. This will include everything from the self, contrast, and trim, as well as anyone who is responsible for supplying the material.

Change Log: The change log keeps track of every change you make to the tech pack between iterations of the sample. Just as your product will evolve through each sample, your tech pack should reflect the changes you want to the factory can correctly update the garment.

Follow Up

The clearer the tech pack, the less back and forth you have to do with your suppliers. You are also protecting yourself from additional risk. As we noted in how much you need to budget when sampling, you can also save thousands of dollars. When the number of your styles multiply and your deliveries go from once a season to twice a month, the devil will be in the details. Perfecting your tech packs will also allow you to take advantage of our fast fashion supply chains while improving overall quality.

Image from Wookieepedia