As a fashion designer, I have learned a thing or two about fit and figuring out sizing from measuring models for collections to getting clients measurements for custom orders.
Finding the right fit may be the hardest thing about shopping and also the most discouraging. But it really does not have to be if you understand your body and how to gauge fit. This takes some understanding of clothing construction and your body.
First, learn how to measure yourself correctly with our guide. This will help you select the right item based on your measurements and the measurements we provide in the item description.
There are a few key points on your body that must be measured to get your body measurements. Use a flexible measuring tape that’s long enough to get your length and a pen and pencil or your phone to take notes of the numbers. When measuring, you don’t need to pull tight, just place the measuring tape softly on your body and let it wrap naturally around you.
This is the horizontal line across your bust around the apex (nipple). Wrap the measuring tape around your back, under your arms, and across your apexes. Note this number.
This is the most narrow part of your torso, to find this point, bend your torso to one side and note where it creases, stand up straight and wrap the measuring tape around that portion of your waist. Note the number.
This is the widest part across your torso (this measurement doesn’t have to be exact because there is typically ease built into clothing when produced, the biggest take away is to have enough space so you can sit down comfortably). Wrap the measuring tape around your butt and hip. Note the number.
This is the measurement from the shoulder and neck point all the way down to the hem. The hem is at the bottom of the dress. Put the beginning of the measuring tape at the shoulder and neck point on your body and let it drop naturally (but make sure it’s straight and not crinkled or warped) down the front of your body. This number will vary depending on where you want the dress to end on you, for example, a mini dress vs a knee length dress vs a midi or maxi dress. Compare this number to the number of the item description and see if the hem will fall where you want it to.
To measure the width of your shoulders, start at the shoulder bone and run the measuring tape to the other shoulder bone (not the edge of your shoulder). The shoulder measurements listed on the item description is referencing the shoulder seam from one side to the other. (Sleeveless dresses will not have shoulder measurements).
This is the measurement right under your armpit. To measure this area, wrap the measuring tape around your back and under your armpits to the front. Make sure you have enough room to move your arms. Note the number.
Once you have your measurements, compare them to the measurements provided on each item. When comparing measurements keep in mind what kind of look you’re wanting and the style of the dress.
Below are three different examples of fit.
Form fitting- these dresses fit close to the body, they will have some stretch to give that form fitting look. Your measurements and the measurements of the dress should only be about 1/2in difference. Unless it’s a very stretchy dress, make sure your measurement is within the range of stretch.
Regular fit- these dresses will fit comfortably but still contour your body without being tight. Your measurements and the measurements of the dress should be about ½ in to 1in difference.
Relaxed fit- these dresses will be very roomy with extra space around the armpit, bust, waist, and hips. Your measurements and the measurements of the dress will have a big difference, it just depends on how much extra room you want.
By no means is this a comprehensive guide as sizing is still a tricky subject. Especially for petite and tall women, or petite versus larger bust and hips or vice versa. The best you can do is select the best fit you can and try it on, if it doesn’t fit, we are happy to accept a return on the item. See our return policy here.
Fit is important and wearing clothes that are well fitting will enhance your overall look and feel. However, clothes don't need to fit exactly, after all these are not custom clothing. As long as the dress falls where it should and it’s not too tight or noticeably loose fitting you’re probably wearing the correct size. Also, consider the brand you are wearing, some brands run small and some run big. If you’re familiar with the brand, deciphering size will be helpful. If you are not, use our guide or contact us to get more information.
We hope this guide has been helpful for you in making the buying process a little easier and more assuring. You can always contact us for additional personalized help.