Fabric Quality & Grading Systems
In the apparel manufacturing industry, there is no shortage of standards and grading systems for measuring quality. Manufacturing processes, equipment, teamwork, and accountability all are important, but if fabric quality falls short, nothing else can make up for it. Apparel manufacturers judge a number of aspects of fabric quality, including color, drape, hand, durability, conformance, and number of defects. Garment quality is judged with respect to fit and seam integrity, among other characteristics. Product performance, such as shrinkage and smooth drying, also must be measured.
To characterize and quantify defects in fabric, apparel manufacturers use evaluation systems that assign penalty points based on the number of defects found within a given area of fabric. Most commonly used is the Graniteville system.