Dressmakers work with patterns and free-hand to cut, sew, design and repair dresses and other similar garments. They must have excellent cutting and sewing technique and be able to provide detailed embellishments. Dressmakers may fulfil individual customer orders or large commercial size orders.

Duties and tasks

  • Assemble separate dress pieces by pinning or arranging them together
  • Consult with customers to decide on appropriate style, material, additions and quantity
  • Create or modify patterns working with designs, samples and sketches; cut fabric and lining to fit pattern specifications
  • Fit dresses and other garments on clients and make note for necessary repairs or alterations
  • Iron or steam dresses or garments for customers to pick-up
  • Machine and hand-sew garment sections and accessories such as buttons, hooks, zippers, etc.
  • Provide price estimates of orders and process payment

Skills required

  • Artistic Abilities
  • Problem Solving Skills
  • Seamstress Expertise
  • Strong Attention to Details
  • Time Management

Working conditions

Dressmakers typically work Monday to Fridays, but may need to work long hours and weekends in order to finish orders on time. They usually work in a sewing room or factory environment with sewing machines and other dressmaking tools.

Professional associations / Industry information

The Council of Textile & Fashion Industries of Australia (TFIA) The Council of Textile & Fashion Industries of Australia (TFIA) has been successfully representing Textile, Clothing and Footwear (TCF) industries since the 1940s

Related jobs and job titles

  • Clothing Patternmaker
  • Clothing and Soft Furnishing Production Worker
  • Clothing, Fabric and Textile Factory Hand
  • Fashion Coordinator
  • Seamstress
  • Tailor