Prototyping Confection Pattern-making Grading


Atelier Margueritte Couture is based in Brussels at 15' from the city center and 10' from the international train station Gare du Midi.

How does Atelier Margueritte Couture work?

To create a collection, we start from the designs of the designer, the technical spec sheet and your explanations. Once the choice for the designs is made, the process is the following:

  1. Creation of the base patterns
  2. Fitting of one or two prototypes
  3. Alteration of the base patterns following the fittings
  4. Confection of the prototype from the chosen fabric
  5. Final adjustments to the prototype
  6. Grading is also recommended in a later stage (needed to create patterns for the different sizes).
  7. Production of small series (100 pcs max)

Frequently Asked Questions FAQ:

How do I realize my collection? What do I need?

1. Preparation

Decide how you feel comfortable working:

  1. You design (draw) the model and leave everything else to the manufacturer.
  2. You design, realize the first pattern yourself and then leave the rest to the manufacturer.
  3. You design, realize the first pattern and prototype yourself and leave the rest to the manufacturer.


  1. Option 1: time factor is very important; you have to secure your manufacturer well in advance. We recommend at least 6 months in advance of your collection presentation date. Your vision of the final garment and that of your manufacturer may diverge, so a lot of dialogue, trials and negotiation must take place.
  2. Option 2: having the pattern ready already creates a better foundation to start from. The manufacturer can already tell you faster what is feasible and for which price.
  3. Option 3: it's the fastest way to see your collection manufactured. You might still need to modify or simplify some of the features depending on what is feasible for your manufacturer.
2. Timing

Prospect well in advance the manufacturers: price, quality, capacity, and delivery timelines. Keep in mind: the manufacturer has also other orders ongoing. You are not the only one. Bear in mind the peak times, when manufacturers are typically very busy. You want to find your manufacturer well before:

  1. Spring - Summer collection (November - February)
  2. Autumn - Winter collection (June - August)

Therefore, start as soon as possible as the "First In" are better served.

You can also decide to phase your collection, on a time sliding basis, meaning: create a few prototypes in a first phase, then another in a later one and so on. This has the advantage that you and your manufacturer get to know each other better and both adapt for the following phase. It also brings less risk to the manufacturing of your collection.

3. How to better communicate your intention as a designer?

Use clear sketches and technical specification sheets. Really, put your time into those. The time you invest in clarifying what you want will pay off as a high-quality prototype.

4. Adapt your designs

Well, suppose you did all the things above correctly. Your design is great and the spec sheet is flawless. What about the feasibility of your design and the cost to prototype or manufacture it? Be ready to make some concessions if you want to keep the costs to an acceptable level. Without being exhaustive, here are a few elements that will add to the production cost:

  • Different types of fabrics to be assembled together
  • Additional Lining
  • Number of pockets, buttons
  • Applied accessories
  • Special type of seams
  • The workability of the fabric (e.g. leather vs. cotton or wool)
  • Can it be assembled with a machine or it requires manual intervention?
  • Fabric design and assembly points (a checkered design fabric requires more cutting and assembly time and even more fabric)
  • Your design is easily adjustable or requires redrawing and even a new pattern?
5. Additional points

There are some other things you have to foresee as a designer:

  • A sufficient quantity of accessories and labels.
  • Contractual dates (if you deliver late the fabrics, your collection will be late, simple as that).
  • Communicate often and clearly with your manufacturer.

Margueritte Couture FAQ:

Can you also realize the patterns?

We can work on patterns already made or, do the patterns you require. Alternative is to do it based on shopping or by modifying an existent model).

Can you just prototype or is there a minimum quantity you require for production?

The good news is that we do not impose you a minimum quantity, the minimum quantity is from 1 prototype per design. Of course, you will realize economies (time and money), if we can also manufacture a small series.

How much will the collection cost me?

It is very difficult to advance a price without seeing the designs, their complexity and the fabrics. I propose to meet and discuss your project (you can use the below Contact form). I advise you to bring along for the meeting the designs and samples of the fabric. After the meeting, I will establish an offer and the price for the work that will be performed.

How much time do you need to realize a small series?

The sooner you let us know, the better. It is subject to planning the capacity.

What are your references?

Our portfolio of clients consists of well-known fashion houses and young creators in Belgium starting up their first collection. Therefore we have experience with a large range of fabrics, very exigent quality criteria and tight deadlines. Written recommendations from our clients are available on demand. NATAN is one of the established names in fashion in Belgium, offering six clothing lines and made-to-mesure services to a range of private clients.

For more information, please use the form below or call + 32 475 42 48 22 :


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