Apparel software key terms deal with many levels of the apparel business. Some terms deal with the shelf product, such as Stock Keeping Units (SKU). Some terms deal with the creation of apparel, such as nesting, cut order, and draping of fabrics. Other terms deal with the entire process, such as Product Lifecycle Management. For a sampling of terminology in the industry, learn about some apparel software key terms below.
Prepacking is the term for packing individual Stock Keeping Units of apparel into larger cases so that they flow more easily through the supply chain. For example, in clothing, the software can prepack items by automatically grouping certain sizes together according to customer request.
In some software programs, a drape module allows the designer to hang fabric over an on-screen model, changing colors as needed. This program allows the client to view the apparel and give approval before the manufacturer spends time and effort on a sample article of clothing.
Nesting involves allocating space efficiently on the fabric roll to prevent wasting of material. Pieces of fabric are nested against each other for the cutting process. Sophisticated algorithms in apparel software make better use of the fabric roll and save time on manual nesting preparation.
Planning for the cut order in fabric means determining the best order in which to cut the fabric for use once nesting has been determined. Algorithms in apparel software optimize cutting order and save money and material.
Advanced shipping notice (ASN)
An advanced shipping notice (ASN) is a notice sometimes requested by the purchaser or trading partner. Usually the seller sends the ASN once workers have prepared the orders and invoices.
Product lifecycle management (PLM)
Product lifecycle management (PLM) refers to the entire lifecycle of apparel, from the design process, to development and manufacture, to distributors, to transportation, to retail.