Industrial practices are designed to ensure that quality products are manufactured efficiently at a profit. They involve designers working together with clients and manufacturers, all of whom need to keep the needs of the consumer in mind.
Roles in industrial practice
The client identifies the need for a product through market research and uses this to provide a design brief for the designer. They set production deadlines and the price of the product. The client is usually a manufacturer or retailer.
The designer works to the design brief and researches market trends, fabrics and processes, taking into account any relevant societal, cultural, moral, environmental or safety issues. They produce a design specification, product costings, and help plan manufacturing.
The manufacturer uses models or prototypes made by the designer, and works out the most efficient way of manufacturing the product. They produce a production plan and a work schedule. During manufacture they aim to keep material and labour costs down, while producing a high-quality, safe product on schedule in a safe environment.
The user or consumer
The user or consumer demands a product that meets their requirements: a high-quality, value-for-money and safe product.
Systems in textile production
All production systems consist of inputs, processes and outputs. A feedback loop enables the inputs and processes to be modified, for example as a result of quality control checks or feedback from customers. Production systems can be modelled with a system diagram.
inputs - cad drawings, lay plan, fabrics, fastenings, manufacturing specification. Processing - designing, modelling, pattern making, quality control, manufacturing. Outputs - end product, consumer satisfaction, employee satisfaction. Feedback - information, new ideas, expertise, customer feedback
Systems and subsystems
In a production system, a number of different processes or subsystems take place at the same time.
Examples of subsystems
Lay-planning: this involves laying out pattern pieces of a fabric to work out the quantity and cost of material.
Costing: this involves estimating how much each product costs to make, including materials, labour, rent and energy costs.
Quality control: this involves the checks for quality that take place at all stages.
Different scales of textiles production call for different production methods.
In one-off production a single product is designed and made to a client's specification. Labour and material costs are high, and a high level of design and manufacturing skills are needed. An example of one-off production would be a made-to-measure wedding dress.
In batch production set quantities of a product are manufactured to order. Batch production requires a high level of...