We're building a new service – your feedback will help us to improve it.

Sewing machinist Machinist

BETATry an improved version of this page

  1. More about how to get into this career
  2. We've included current opportunities to help you with your next steps
Try it out

Sewing machinists stitch pieces of material together to make clothing, accessories and soft furnishings.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £14,000 to £21,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

There are no set requirements. Sewing skills or a college course in sewing machine skills or textiles could help you get a job.

You must have good eyesight.

You could get into this job through an apprenticeship.

2. Skills required

You'll need:

  • sewing skills
  • practical skills to use machinery
  • close attention to detail
  • the ability to work to deadlines

3. What you'll do

You could make curtains, bedding, car mats, clothes or accessories. You could use a computerised sewing machine that reads from a digital design pattern.

Your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • changing machine settings for different jobs
  • feeding material through the machine
  • stitching together clothes or other items
  • checking finished work against the pattern instructions
  • cleaning and oiling machines
  • sewing different fabrics like cotton, wool, leather or industrial textiles

4. Salary

Starter: £14,000

Experienced: £15,000 to £17,500

Highly Experienced: £18,000 to £21,000 (supervisor)

You may get paid for each item you make.

You could get a bonus if you work quickly.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You'll usually work around 40 hours a week. You may work shifts and early starts are common.

You'll work in a team in a factory and spend most of your time sitting at a machine. The work can be repetitive and factories can be noisy.

6. Career path and progression

With experience you could work with a designer, or as a 'sample machinist', making up samples of products.

You could also become a supervisor or move into staff training, quality control or pattern cutting. You could set up your own business as a tailor or dressmaker.

Related careers

You may be interested in:

Last updated: 13 September 2018