Before getting into the definition of spec sheets, let me first tell you the many names that spec sheets go by:
specification sheets, tech packs & technical specification sheets to name a few.
The simple definition of a spec sheet is a series of pages with information encompassing all the details that is takes to price out and to make an item correctly.
It is basically a blueprint for the manufacturer.
The main benefits of it are to acquire pricing from several sources at once, less costly than making a sample, and once you move to manufacturing it is a document that the manufacturer should agree to adhere to. Should the manufacturer fall out of tolerance of items stated on the spec or neglect to put details on the garment related to the spec, they are at fault. This helps quality control, is easy to evaluate garments from manufacturers and gives you a legal reason to demand better quality or money back.
Some people think making apparel is going to be easy- it’s not! There are many things the untrained person will assume the manufacturer will understand about their brand, vision, and or style. You will surely go through many samples and much headache getting the sample correct without a spec sheet of all the details thought out before hand. Simple things like stitches per inch, thread color, interlinings, pocket bag attachment, fit etc…. can cause a garment to look terrible and function terrible.
Lastly, one of the main functions of a spec sheet or tech pack is to provide POMs (points of measure) from all sizes. This is very important to your sell through and resales to have a good fitting garment for all sizes not just your base size. If you are having trouble getting good quality from your manufacturer and/ or sample maker or if you are thinking about getting started in this endeavor…. remember pattering is engineering and asking a builder to build something with out a blue print is just not a good idea! Best of luck making your dreams a reality!