View Full Version : Industrial-standard CAD/CAM software for Fashion/Garment

April 18th, 2012, 04:26 AM
Hi all,

I don't know if I am posting this in the right place. I have switched some of workstations of my company from Windows to Ubuntu. I thought the switch is easy, as advertised by the Ubuntu people, but it turns out to be a nightmare.

My company is a fashion/garment design and manufacturing company. We have a lot of workstations for CAD and CAM. I have been looking for software to replace some of the old ones we used with Windows, but I just can't find any industrial-standard ones.

For example, I really want to a package of software that runs on the Ubuntu, which allows us to create paper patterns (as in floor plan to architecture and paper patterns to clothes), grading (produces different sizes from paper pattern), marker arrangement (arrange the paper patterns on the cloth before cutting), production management and design fitting emulation.

There are millions of garment making companies/factories in the world (not overstating) and, on Windows, there are so many garment manufacturing software to choose from. But yet I am surprised how limiting the choices are for Ubuntu. I have been suggested with some of the CAD software available but I have to say they are really for engineering and not tailoring.

From my past experience in using those software in Windows, I have to say those software have no standards. When one technician moves from one company to another, he has to re-learn how to use a different piece of software. Also, the software often have problems when putting to use together. For example, after a paper pattern is created, it needs to be converted to different file format to be able to use on another software, e.g. grading software. There seems to be big gaps in the production line when a company buys different software to fill up and automate her production line. Also, those software do not come cheap.

I think since there is such a huge market - millions of companies and so many fashion design students every year - and especially China is filled with garment manufacturing companies everywhere, there will be a big potential if Ubuntu starts a software package project like this. Imagine the whole industry is moving to Ubuntu.... that's quite a big thing!

April 24th, 2012, 08:21 AM
Some suggestions for software recommendations would be welcomed.... feeling very desperate now...

April 25th, 2012, 08:46 AM
Hi SCCY, sorry you're having some trouble making the switch. Unfortunately there are not always 1:1 alternatives when switching to Ubuntu, I use Rhythmbox now instead of itunes (and enjoy it much more). I'm unfortunately unable to use some windows applications (like games for instance).

There is a way to run windows applications in Ubuntu though, check out Wine in the software center which allows some programs to work under linux. After installing Wine via software center you would then install the old windows program normally.

You might also check out some stuff in the libredesign community:
One interesting thing I saw was this:
Which uses Inkscape to create patterns.

For general CAD usage, I'm currently using LibreCAD for architecture blueprints but I don't believe it has any garment specific options.

I would say that if wine doesn't work, then please keep your old windows partition alive and boot into it when you need to use that specific program especially if you're in a work environment. CAD/CAM software is definitely an area that still needs more work in the free/open source world. :(

EDIT: Oh and which programs were you using under Windows? Also you might try asking this question on askubuntu.com they're pretty speedy/knowledgeable about direct questions like this.