We all agree at 7Active that the garment technology team are not only our USP, but also the most vital department within the company.
Whilst our dedicated sales team are always on hand to advise on your project prices and timings, it is the garment technology team who make the magic happen.
As soon as an order has been confirmed, the experienced garment technologists start work on a range of elements- all vital to ensure your garments are perfect. All of this is done in-house in our UK-based office.
Here’s a breakdown of how our garment technologists fit in to the order process, and what you can expect if you manufacture a bespoke range through 7Active.
Stage 1 – Tech Packs
First of all tech packs are produced. These are the ‘recipes’ of the garment; it tells the factory exactly how to make your bespoke garment. It lists the most suitable fabrics, panels, construction, seam type, trims, decoration, labels, packaging and of course size scale.
This industry-standard document is constantly evolving. We update with every fit comment, adjustment and confirmed component of the order.
Stage 2 – First Fit Sample
Once the tech pack has been approved it is sent to one of our factories in the Far East, along with any buying samples provided. Buying sample are useful for matching fabrics. Work then starts on creating the pattern, and sourcing appropriate fabrics for the sample. The first fit sample is created to test the construction and fit of the garment.
Once complete it comes back to the garment tech team who make sure all of the measurements and panelling matches the tech pack. It is tried on and inspected. At this stage we make any amendments we think will suit the garment and communicate this to the client.
Stage 3 – Size Set Samples
Once the it has been confirmed a size set is ordered. This is to ensure that every single size in the order is correct. We don’t expect a client to sign off a size scale on a spreadsheet as it’s almost impossible to visualise how the sizes would compare when manufactured. At this stage the garment technology team would make sure the garments are fit for purpose with extensive fit sessions. For examples- we get cyclists to wear cycle leggings to make sure they stand up to long rises and hot washing.
Stage 4 – Lab Dips & Features
Whilst the fits and construction are being perfected, work begins on your fabrics and features. This includes lab dips of your fabric to sign off (this checks Pantone matching if required) and any features. Moulds are created to sample bespoke moulded zips and any heat pressed logos.
Packaging is also created and sampled, this includes premium bags such as opaque zip-lock bags, swing tickets in any shape, paper stock and finish, and woven neck labels or hem tags.
Stage 5 – Gold Seal Sample
After each part of the garment has been signed off, the Gold Seal sample is made. This is the final sample and includes the exact fabric, decoration, features and packaging, even down to the barcodes. We create a number of Gold Seal samples- one for you, one for us, one for the factory manager and one for our merchandiser who performs the quality checks.
As with any sample, we need approval via email before bulk production starts.
For specialist products such as cycle wear, hi-vis workwear, baby and children’s clothing or waterproof technical jackets, external testing by SGS can be done to ensure the products meet any EU laws or standards expected by that sports.
Stage 6 -Quality Control
Checks are performed on the order at many stages throughout production, from fabric milling and Pantone dye matching to the construction of the garment. At every stage of the manufacturing garments are spot checked before going to the next stage. External merchandisers will sport check the final order before it is freighted to the UK.
Our team has years of experience in the fashion design, merchandising, production and retail markets. Please feel free to contact us to discuss any future projects.