In manufacturing, textile and apparel workers need good hand-eye coordination, manual dexterity, physical stamina and the ability to perform repetitive tasks for long periods. As machinery in the industry continues to become more complex, knowledge of the basics of computers and electronics will increasingly be an asset. In addition, the trends toward cross-training of operators and working in teams will increase the time needed to become fully trained on all machines and require interpersonal skills to work effectively with others.
Upholsterers should have manual dexterity, good coordination and the strength to tightly stretch fabric and lift heavy furniture. An eye for detail, a flair for color and the ability to use fabrics creatively also are helpful.