What differentiates a designer from a tailor?

By Magdalene Njoki 

Most people confuse a fashion designer and a tailor. Reason being both use the same tools and the end product is the apparel/ dress/ garment. However, there is a huge difference in how they work.
A Fashion Designer is a creative mind behind any item of clothing, be it a high fashion runway garment or your regular pair of jeans or tee shirt.

They conduct research, develop a concept and vision for the type of person they would like to dress, create a visual image of their concept through sketches and oversee the various design and production processes that bring their sketches or designs to life in
the form of a three-dimensional garment to fit their muse or intended market.
On the other hand, a Tailor directly measures the client and stitches the clothes according to the design given by the client.
A few key points to note what is different:
 A tailor is a person who makes repairs or alters clothing professionally. A Fashion designer conceives garment combinations of line, proportion, colour and texture.
 A Tailor makes a customized dress for a client who walks in with a pre-determined design in mind. A Fashion designer works on seasons to develop a collection of garments, which require a lot of planning.
 A Tailor usually makes outfits which the client might select from magazines, celebrities wear. A Fashion designer designs original clothes.
 A Tailor Might be aware of current or past trends (based on the number of years of experience), but will not have many ideas about which style will be popular in the future.

A fashion designer has an in-depth understanding of global trends (both current & upcoming) and will have a good sense of what will
work in the local market soon.