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3 Ways CAD Has Improved Fashion Design

Computer-aided design (CAD) was traditionally used to build homes or naval ships but has been increasingly helpful in other industries. One industry that has benefited from the integration of CAD is fashion. There are various benefits to using CAD software in fashion design.

1. Better Collaboration

Historically, fashion design involved physical sketches of ideas and team members would collaborate based on these sketches. Unfortunately, this is time-consuming and often means everyone on the team needs to collaborate in-person to work on a project. The use of CAD not only means team members can see the concept on their computer while in the office, but they can also collaborate from anywhere. Some CAD programs are cloud-based, which allows anyone with an account can use the software from anywhere. Team members do not have to be in the same physical location to make changes to the design or share their new ideas with everyone else, making the design process faster.

2. More Inclusivity

CAD programs improve not only the range of sizes designers can include in their line, but it can also help with manipulating clothing to fit more body types. Historically, fit models were used as the standard for a line of clothing, and the clothing item was simply sized up or down to create the size range for that item. Unfortunately, this lead to pieces that were simply a bigger or smaller version than the fit model's size, but did not take into account changes in proportions or other variations.

Now, using CAD software, designers can take measurements from people representing different sizes and body types and use this information to create virtual models. This allows designers to see how the same garment will look on different people and it may influence their decisions. Although it is impossible to create a single garment that fits everyone well, sometimes slight modifications can make the garment flattering on more body types.

3. Improved Visualization

Although every CAD program will have its own set of features, some allow for simulations. This feature is ideal to help designers determine what a specific garment will look like using different fabrics. For example, a designer may want to create a blouse that flows a certain way. The ability to simulate different fabrics and watch the animations can help the designer gauge whether a certain fabric will drape the body in the right way and flow in an ideal manner as the person walks. This saves time when constructing the mock-up piece because the designers can hone-in on one or two types of fabric that should work based on the simulation. Additionally, this prevents unnecessary waste of pattern paper and fabric, which can add up quickly.

The use of CAD fashion design software has transformed the fashion industry. Not only can garments go from conceptualization to production faster, but the ability to have more realistic models also allows designers to be more inclusive.