As promised, today I’ll show a bit of how Pointer Brand constructs their dungarees. Actually, I think they were making overalls, but you’ll get the idea!
It starts with a pattern , laid out on a computer. Marinda manipulated the pattern pieces to maximize the use of the fabric. The goal is to eliminate as much waste as possible. So the pieces are placed as closely together as is workable.
When she is satisfied that she has the best arrangement of the pieces, the pattern is sent to this huge printer, which prints the arrangement of pieces onto paper.
Look closely to see the lines of the pattern appearing on the paper.
The pattern is then taken upstairs to the cutting room, which I showed in yesterday’s post. Many thicknesses of denim are pulled over that table, and then the pattern is put in place and stapled to the fabric.
Then the cutter takes over. Using what looks like a saw, he carefully cuts through all the layers of fabric. Note the nifty chain mail glove!
Then the pieces are taken to the correct sewing room. There the sewers work through the steps of making each garment. There are roughly 30 steps in the sewing process.
The sewer will have a stack of pieces to work on, and she does the same process on the entire stack. This sewer is putting the pocket on the bib of overalls. Note how she is turning the corners manually. Such skill!
In another part of the room, two sewers were making the front fly of jeans. Having struggled through fly construction in the past, I stood there and learned a thing or two. They certainly made it look easy.
This is the back pocket machine. It automatically places and stitches on the rear pockets in a jiffy.
Yes, it IS fast!
The pocket machine:
Things are kept straight by use of computer labels, showing the garment and size. Scraps from the cutting are used to bind the different sections during construction.
This great little gadget automatically makes the perfect flat felled seam.
Zip, and the back seam is done!
They have lots of machines that do one very specialized job, like this point maker. This is what makes the corners of collars and cuffs so crisp.
One thing that really surprised me (though after thinking about it, made sense) was that one of Pointer Brand’s biggest markets is Japan. Most vintage sellers know what a big market Japan is for vintage denim, but they love these classic American standards like a pair of work dungarees or a chore jacket. In Japan, Pointer is a fashion brand, not a work brand.
And how does Pointer Brands stay so fashion forward? They do their reading!!
Thanks so much to Marinda and Jack and all the super people at Pointer Brands. I loved visiting and sharing your story.