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Glossary of Fashion Terms


Atelier: An atelier is a studio or workshop used by a designer where their work is done.

Avant Garde: This means advance guard. In fashion, this term means being at the forefront of fashion. Avant Garde sets the new trends, techniques, and styles of fashion for everyone outside of fashion’s boundaries.

BOM: This stands for Bill Of Materials.

Brick and Click: A Brick and Click is when you have a brick and mortar store and a website.

Buying Office: It is an independent or store owned office which is located at a market centre and buys for one chain or for many stores. Buying office is also known as buying house. For more about buying

CAD: This stands for Computer-Aided Designer. This means you used Adobe Illustrator, or a similar tool, to create your design. A manufacturer might tell you at some point that they made suggestions on your CAD.

CAM: This stands for Computer-Aided Manufacture. This is a software manufacturers use to create your designs. The CAD is placed into the CAM system for production.

CMT: This stands for Cut, Make, and Trim.

Colourway: This is a fancy way of saying colour options for the same product. For example, if you designed a sandal, a colourway would be offering that sandal in red, pink, and white.

DC: This stands for Distribution Centre.

DTM: This stands for Dyed to Match.

Fashion House: A fashion house is a place where clothes are designed, made, and sold. You will also hear terms like Dyehouse, this is where fabric is dyed. Anything that follows “house” is usually what that house specializes in.

Flats: A flat is your design drawn flat with no patterns or colour and shows of all the seams and darts from every view.

Grading: Grading is taking the pattern sample size and adding, or decreasing, the pattern size. If the sample pattern size is a men’s M, and you need the pattern to be in an S and an L as well, that process of making those other sized patterns is called grading.

Haute Couture: Haute is French for High. Couture is French for dressmaking. Sometimes you will hear people say high fashion, or just couture. Haute Couture is the highest level of fashion. This is where the highest quality of products and craftsmanship happens in the industry, resulting in the most expensive designs.

Knit-down : This is small knitted fabric swatch (which is knitted as per buyers artwork like checks or strips to check the repeat and size) which merchandiser sends to the buyer for approval is known as knit –down.

Lead Time: From the date of placing an order to the delivery date this period is known as lead time. Generally lead time is 90-120 days. Lead time is also called as preparing time for order execution.

PDS: This stands for Pattern Design System.

PO: This is an abbreviation for Purchase Order.

POS: This stands for Point Of Sale. This is the system where consumer transactions take place. There are also Cloud POS systems.

Pret-A-Porter: This term is French for ready to wear. Which means that the designs were made using standard sizing charts and the products are ready to wear by consumers.

Posted by: People Marketing Fashion Recruitment