Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewer Salary
Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewers in the United States can expect to earn an average of $15.09 per hour. The vast majority (83 percent) of Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewers who took the survey are female. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Although just over a half lack health benefits of any kind, more than two-fifths do enjoy medical insurance, and roughly one in four get dental coverage, too. This report is based on responses to the PayScale salary survey.
|Salary||$23,178 - $49,665|
|Total Pay (|
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).)
|$20,763 - $50,675|
|Hourly Rate||$9.87 - $22.47|
|Total Pay (||$20,763 - $50,675|
Job Description for Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewer
Tailors, dressmakers, and custom sewers generally work for specialty clothing sellers at premium levels of service, and common employers include places such as bridal shops and custom, high-end haberdasheries. They may also work at premium clothing service companies, executive dry cleaners, and other tailoring and altering shops.Read More...
Those in this position work by creating, altering, and finishing custom-created clothing for customers. Generally, they must first acquire accurate measurements; these measurements are often far more precise than those used by customers for selecting clothing themselves. They then guide customers through a variety of templates and/or custom offerings based on the measurements and expected use for the garment. In bridal shops, for example, dressmakers work with wedding parties to narrow down dress choices, colors, and accessories, and offer suggestions based on their desires. For custom-tailored suits and dresses, multiple test fittings may be necessary, and the tailor will make additional measurements and notes during these fittings and alter the garment accordingly to achieve the best-tailored fit.
Much of the work of a tailor or custom sewer also involves alterations; clients may require articles of clothing to be let out or drawn in. Department stores and specialty clothing stores may also employer custom sewers to hem and finish pant legs and jacket sleeves of "unfinished" articles of clothing to match a customer's measurements.
To work as a tailor, dressmaker, or custom sewer, technical school accreditation or an associate's degree in fashion design or tailoring may be required. Candidates will then gain experience in department stores or high-end dry cleaners which offer alterations, while bridal shops may only consider candidates who already have extensive practical experience. This can be a very customer service-oriented position, so applicants should be outstanding communicators with an aptitude for working with commercial sewing equipment.
Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewer Tasks
- Take customer measurements and communicate any necessary alterations.
- Maintain sewing machines and report any damages or problems.
- Ensure alterations are accurate, complete, and meet specified standards.
- Mark or pin alteration measurements,
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Pay by Experience Level for Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewer
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $25K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $35K on average — a distinctly larger sum. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $34K in this role. Respondents who boast more than 20 years of experience can't seem to boast paychecks reflecting that extensive experience, though; veteran Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewers report making only $33K on average.
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