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Career and Education Opportunities for Tailors in Chicago, Illinois

For those living in the Chicago, Illinois area, there are many career and education opportunities for tailors. There are currently 1,560 working tailors in Illinois; this should shrink by 1% to 1,550 working tailors in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for tailors, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 2.0% over the next eight years. Tailors generally design, make, or fit garments.

The income of a tailor is about $11 hourly or $23,850 yearly on average in Illinois. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $12 per hour or $24,990 per year on average. Incomes for tailors are not quite as good as in the overall category of Fabric and Leather in Illinois, and better than the overall Fabric and Leather category nationally.

There are 180 schools of higher education in the Chicago area, including one within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can get a degree to start your career as a tailor. The most common level of education for tailors is less than a high school diploma. It will take only a short time to learn to be a tailor if you already have a high school diploma.


Tailor video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, tailors design, make, or fit garments.

Tailors sew garments, using needles and thread or sewing machines. They also trim excess material, using scissors. Equally important, tailors have to press garments, using hand irons or pressing machines. They are often called upon to assemble garment components and join components with basting stitches, using needles and thread or sewing machines. They are expected to repair or remove faulty garment components such as pockets and linings. Finally, tailors measure customers, using tape measures, and record measurements.

Every day, tailors are expected to be able to control objects and devices with precise control. They need to visualize how things come together and can be organized. It is also important that they control and manipulate objects at a fine level of detail.

It is important for tailors to position patterns of garment components on fabric, and cut fabric along outlines, using scissors. They are often called upon to talk with customers to establish types of material and garment styles desired. They also put in padding and shaping materials. They are sometimes expected to develop or adapt designs for garments, and layout patterns to fit measurements, applying knowledge of garment layout and fabric. Somewhat less frequently, tailors are also expected to examine tags on garments to establish alterations that are needed.

Tailors sometimes are asked to sew buttonholes and attach buttons so as to finish garments. and record required alterations and instructions on tags, and attach them to garments. And finally, they sometimes have to measure customers, using tape measures, and record measurements.

Like many other jobs, tailors must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Laundry Operator. Operate or tend washing or dry-cleaning machines to wash or dry-clean industrial or household articles, such as cloth garments, suede, and carpets.
  • Medical Appliance Technician. Construct, fit, or repair medical supportive devices, such as braces, artificial limbs, and other surgical and medical appliances.
  • Prepress Technician. Set up and prepare material for printing presses.


The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago - Chicago, IL

The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago, 350 N Orleans St, Chicago, IL 60654-1593. The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago is a small school located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,900 students and an admission rate of 48%. The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago has an associate's degree program in Apparel and Textiles, Other Specialties.


Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.