Fashion Designers - How Do They Use Math?

Mar 21, 2023 | Cherry Hill

The study of math is a complex and fascinating subject that helps us develop a deep understanding of our universe and its intricate connections. A mathematical principle can be found in almost any aesthetic creation, including music, dance, architecture, and beautiful natural symmetry. But when it comes to fashion do you think fashion and math have something in common? Would you believe that the clothing youโ€™re wearing right now, rely on math while being created? Many people believe that the worlds of math and fashion are two entirely different fields, but what if we tell you that these two disciplines complement one another and interact more frequently than you realize? Letโ€™s take a look at some basic examples below.

Sketches The clothing-making process begins with a sketch. Designers create geometric shapes, lines, and angles in their sketches while ensuring symmetry or intentionally avoiding it. The study of shapes, patterns, and sizes, as well as how they relate to one another in space is known as geometry and is a fundamental branch of math.

Designs Math aids in defining the framework for how components are arranged in a design. Highly abstract patterns and geometric shapes like triangles, squares, circles, and zigzags may be present in varying amounts. Organic patterns, on the other hand, resemble elements found in nature; they may or may not be geometric depending on the pattern chosen. Abstract and organic patterns are frequently combined by designers to create new patterns by combining their geometry.

Measurements It is impossible to create a piece of clothing without measurements. Ensuring that the clothing will fit the models requires exact and calculated measurements.

Price of Items Designers and retailers use math to determine clothing prices by calculating the cost of fabric, hangers, thread, and other necessities. They also use math to determine when and how to offer discounts.

Inventory Clothing stores use math to determine how many of each item they should stock in each location. In order to prevent an inventory backlog, they compare the quantity sold and the number of pieces on hand with what was initially ordered.

Return on Investment (ROI) Prior to purchasing the materials used in clothing production, designers must ensure that their return will cover all of the costs of the initial investment. There is quite a bit of math involved in calculating the profit.

Right now, you are probably thinking differently about the clothes you wear and the steps to create them. Think about it, is there any math/geometry you can recognize in what you are wearing today?