With a needle and thread, sewers and tailors create and repair clothing and other stitched items, both handcrafted and mass-produced. Sewing machine operators use sewing machines to sew or decorate clothing and other products. They keep machines stocked with thread, position material under needles, and guide their stitching to sew parts together. When a product is finished, these operators measure each item to ensure accuracy. Hand sewers stitch a wide variety of textiles and materials to make clothing, books, mattresses, wigs, and even toys. They draw and then cut materials following established patterns. Sewers must measure and piece together parts, stitch them together, and sew in trimmings, zippers, buttons, and other fasteners. To finish a product, they may iron seams and trim edges. Tailors, dressmakers, and custom sewers create garments for customers and alter clothing to fit better. Customers try on clothing items so tailors can pin or clip fabric to fit their size. They take measurements to bring the hems of sleeves, dresses, and pant legs to the right length, and may let out seams or take them in to improve a garment’s fit. Some custom sewers create original clothing designs, and then sew them. There are no specific education requirements for hand or machine sewers and tailors, dressmakers, and custom sewers, although sewing skills are typically required.
What they do:
Design, make, alter, repair, or fit garments.
On the job, you would:
Measure parts, such as sleeves or pant legs, and mark or pin-fold alteration lines.
Remove stitches from garments to be altered, using rippers or razor blades.
Sew garments, using needles and thread or sewing machines.
Arts and Humanities
Manufactured or Agricultural Goods
manufacture and distribution of products
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
talking to others
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
Hand and Finger Use
keep your arm or hand steady
put together small parts with your fingers
listen and understand what people say
communicate by speaking
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Word processing software
high school diploma/GED or no high school diploma/GED usually needed
New job opportunities are less likely in the future.