how much to pay a seamstress?

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Original Post

i'm clueless on this. i want to start designing clothes but i cannot sew...so...i need to pay a seamstress. how much? do i pay hourly or do they get a percentage of the sales? how does this work? help. please :)

Posted at 2:48pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

Responses

MrsGibson says

I don't think there are any hard and fast rules, I would approach someone who can sew and ask if they would teach you for X number of hours at X cost, or offer to do them a favour in return, you teach me and I'll pay you in cleaning or something, cakes maybe.

Posted at 2:50pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

MrsGibson says

Once you get a feel for the machine, and you don't have to pay a fortune for a good little starter machine, there are tons of really good 'sewing for dummies' type books with loads of great pictures to help with any particular sewing prolem like buttons holes or bias cutting or whatever.

Posted at 2:52pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

mina899 says

Hmmm... Have you ever considered trying to learn how to sew?

To me that seems like the easiest option, as I'm starting to design clothes myself, but have no money. :P

You could try walking into a fabric store and asking about sewing classes; they're usually very cheap. I recently did a 3-hour pattern-making workshop that costed $7, for example.

For an experienced seamstress... Maybe $15/hour or so? I'm pretty sure it would be an hourly wage, or maybe you could settle a price per garment.

Posted at 2:54pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

DuhBe says

Checkout this site for seamstress hourly wages in USA:
www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Seamstress/Hourly_Rate

If you're not sewing the clothes you design, will you just draw it and have someone make it for you? That requires pattern drafting, grading and sewing which is much harder than just sewing alone. For budding fashion designers - you need to know about the Fashion Incubator website. Tons of info that you're looking for is buried there.
www.fashion-incubator.com/

Posted at 3:00pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

DuhBe says

Ooops, I forgot to say this part... Teaching yourself to sew is the best way to get into this. I know a successful costume designer on Etsy who didn't know how to sew a few years ago and now she makes everything herself. Even if you have other people make your designs, you should understand sewing so you produce quality goods and don't get taken advantage of.

Posted at 3:03pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

hhhm.. well i do know how to sew a little. i took a class but i really dont enjoy it at all. i just like designing the clothes. but i will take a look at that link, thanks so much!

Posted at 3:08pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

Duhbe...what GREAT info (on that payscale)! I'll definitely be bookmarking that... how great to have that as a resource! Thanks!

Posted at 3:23pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

uvkitty says

check out whatthecraft.com if you're looking on starting sewing! It's got great tips.

And as for what to pay a seamstress? Shop around! they'll all have their own rates. Find one that works for you :)

Posted at 3:25pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT

Some people will commission and pay by the piece, some pay by the hour etc... You'll probably have to buy the materials unless you leave it up to the seamstress.
Best way like everyone said is to learn. However if you don't have the patience for sewing, which you kinda need a lot of, then you may end up having the shell out a lot of dough for someone else to make it for you.
These things are never cheap if you don't do it yourself.

Posted at 3:28pm Mar 12, 2009 EDT