Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewer Salary
Median pay for Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewers in the United States is around $15.05 per hour. For the most part, Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewers enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewers who responded to the questionnaire are largely women, dominating at 85 percent. Not all workers are lucky enough to have benefits; in fact, a majority are without coverage. Medical insurance is claimed by over a third and dental insurance is reported by close to one-fourth. The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.
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
- Ensure alterations are accurate, complete, and meet specified standards.
- Mark or pin alteration measurements,
- Take customer measurements and communicate any necessary alterations.
- Maintain sewing machines and report any damages or problems.
Common Career Paths for Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewer
Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewer Job Listings
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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.
Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $27K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $34K. Tailor, Dressmaker, or Custom Sewers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $34K. People who have worked for more than 20 years report a median income no higher than the median for folks with 10 to 20 years of experience.