Professional translation is an indispensable part of exporting textiles and textile goods, as the fashion industry uses a lot of specialized, industry-specific terms, and labeling.

When going to foreign markets a textile industry company will need to translate:

  • Certificates;

  • Information on raw materials;

  • Technical and design documentation / catalogues;

  • Supply contracts / shipping documents;

  • Test reports;

  • Documents confirming product safety;

  • Labels;

  • Website and applications;

  • Blogs;

  • Newsletters.

1. Product name: translation rules to apply

The common use of foreign words, neologisms which are implemented in the textile industry for their sophistication or “fashionability”, complicates the translation. During translation into other languages English words are usually kept.
For example, we often find the word "top" in technical documents and only after finding out its Harmonized Tariff System Code (HTS Code) we can understand whether it is a blouse, a t-shirt, or a tank top. According to the labelling requirements for the Eurasian market the word 'top' cannot be used and should be replaced by the name from the local glossary of textile terms and definitions. In Europe, on the other hand, the word "top" is widely used. However, without additional information or a photo it is difficult to identify such a product.

The translation of the names of textile, footwear and leather goods can be approached from the two different sides:

  1. from the technical and regulatory point of view which considers the identification and naming rules specific to each country and

  2. from a marketing point of view. It reflects a trend towards youthfulness by using English terms and neologisms and helps the consumer to understand you better.

2. Translation of labels and packaging

Packaging and labels include both marketing and regulatory information required by the market for which the product is intended. Before starting the design or adapting the packaging and labelling, it is necessary to verify and validate a technical file in one’s own language or in English with an expert or specialist in that market. Once this is done the translation and adaptation/design (if necessary) can be carried out.

Content in the field of fashion is rich in technical vocabulary, so approximate translation is not acceptable. A precise translation that incorporates the terms of the fashion industry requires a thorough knowledge of the vocabulary relating to fabrics, cuts, materials, colors, and compositions.

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