Maybe this is not really the right place to ask this, I hope I will not be penalized for asking this.

I am a webdeveloper, and I do most of the stuff myself, from the basic idea, till the final design and implementation. It's like when a baker has his own farm with grain, creates his own wheat, makes the bread, and sells it in his own shop.

Some time ago I heard a nice English expression for this, but I forgot what it was. It was something like producing from grain to bread. Does anyone know this expression, or can think of something that would nicely fit.

Edit: Roughly 9 years later we basically have a term for this. Currently I define myself as a Full Stack Web Developer.

  • Related: end-to-end alternatives
    – RegDwigнt
    Aug 12 '11 at 9:55
  • I have looked at the related question, and even added one alternative to the list. There is still one that I have heard from my teacher that I still haven't seen. I will ask him when the vacation is over. Aug 12 '11 at 14:10
  • 2
    "Whole lifecycle" is the phrase I'm familiar with for involvement with a project from concept to maintenance. Aug 12 '11 at 20:16
  • @peter yes this comes the closest to the expression I am looking for I guess and I can surely use it. Still not exactly what I am looking for, it was is the form of from ... to .... Another one i've found is: from crop to cup. A company that sells coffee in their store from the coffee beans they grow themself. Aug 12 '11 at 20:56
  • You've already accepted an answer, but from inception to completion might have fit as well. (Although end to end is what came to mind first...)
    – Gnawme
    Nov 19 '11 at 8:42

12 Answers 12


Something I hear quite commonly is "end to end", although this originally had a somewhat different meaning.

  • Voted up after reading the OQ's comment on JSBᾶngs' answer. Given that extra info, I think this is probably the phrase to use.
    – T.E.D.
    Aug 12 '11 at 18:19

I believe the idiom you are looking for is "soup to nuts":

"Soup to nuts" is an American English idiom conveying the meaning of "from beginning to end". It is derived from the description of a full course dinner,

There's also "From start to finish", which is pretty clear.

  • Thank you for the answer, this comes somewhat close to what I mean. It is not the exact expression I am looking for, but it's worth considering using for me. Aug 12 '11 at 9:37

Something which is made ony from basic ingredients is often said to be made from scratch.

Ironically, however, making bread from scratch usually means starting from flour, rather than grain.

  • Thanks for the answer, but it is not really what I was looking for. I know this expression and use it often, but the one I am looking for goes beyond building from scratch, it's about making the scratch also. Just as you say, making bread from scratch is using flour, the expression I am looking for covers the making of the flour itself. Aug 12 '11 at 9:40
  • I guess the expression I am looking for is a bit off-topic for this forum. My question is not really about the English language, it's more a phrase that is used in production environments, sorry for that. Aug 12 '11 at 9:44
  • On a side note, check out the toaster project, this takes the definition of "from scratch" to its ultimate extreme.
    – Andrew Vit
    Nov 19 '11 at 1:22

I can't tell if you're looking for a general phrase (like the answer proposed by @Gnawme) or a domain-specific one like your grain/bread analogy. One I have heard in arts-and-crafts contexts is "from sheep to shawl", which seems analogous to your "grain to bread". There are other domain-specific ones; many of them use alliteration.

  • +1 Good one. I am not really looking for a domain specific one. I was just looking for the one that I had heard before. But in this posts I have seen so many nice ones that can be used. Ill add yours to the list. Nov 24 '11 at 0:16

A phrase used in the local food systems movement is 'from farm to table' or 'from farm to fork'

  • Good one, very visual and easy to understand. Just thought of a variation to this one: From stable to table. Good slogans for farmers etc. Will remember. Nov 19 '11 at 8:47

2 more to add to the list: From a whole cloth, and Greenfield. From a whole cloth refers to something that is not modified from an existing kernel, but is rather new in all its parts. Greenfield (or Green Field) often refers to a manufacturing facility, which is created from the ground up (starting with a green field) as opposed to repurposing an existing facility. These probably don't quite fit your question, but I'm hoping they will trigger others peoples memories. :)

  • +1 This is a nice one to add to the list. Thank Nov 19 '11 at 0:24

From seeing one of the OP's comments, and at his urging: From inception to completion.


'From concept to completion' works well for me as I project manage retail shop fit-outs from design, then from the empty concrete box to opening day. Same as you really, just you're online while I'm bricks and mortar.


cradle to grave "from cradle to the grave"

birth to death

concept to completion

  • Cradle to grave tends to refer to the life of a thing, rather than the construction of it. For example you could perhaps talk about the 'from cradle to grave' of a house, but you'd be meaning the entire lifespan of the house until it fell down.
    – dwjohnston
    May 21 '14 at 23:07

I've heard "from Alpha to Omega" as well. This is also a biblical reference.

  • 1
    This is a nice one indeed Saqib. Check my edit in the original question. Jan 27 '20 at 16:44
  • Oh yeah. I am a full stack developer as well. :) Jan 28 '20 at 6:56

Consider the idiomatic from the ground up.

from the ground up: gradually from the most elementary level to the highest level : She created her business from the ground up.


"From A to Z" might fit the bill

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