Your dress size measurements should be taken while wearing undergarments similar to the ones you will wear with your dress. How to measure dress size for the most flattering fit.
Measure around your chest, at the fullest point of the bust not under the bust. While standing up straight, bend at the waist to one side. Standing with your feet together, measure around the fullest part of the hips. Your hollow-to-hem measurement is determined by measuring from the center of your collarbone hollow to the bottom hem of your dress.
We highly recommend that you have a formal wear professional perform this measurement. For example, if your gown is an A-line with a full skirt, you will need to move the measuring tape away from the body to ensure that your gown will be the correct length. Most dresses come in a standard hollow-to-hem measurement, based on the size of the dress, which varies from designer to designer. How to measure dress size and read a size chart.
For example, if your measurements are as follows: Your bust fits a size Your waist fits a size Your hips fits a size 8. We would advise that you order a size 12, and get the dress altered down to custom fit your body. Ordering the size that fits your largest measurement will ensure that your dress has the most flattering fit possible.
The designer's size chart outlines their specific standard sizing measurements. However, as a result of various cultural pressures, most notably vanity sizing , North American clothing sizes have drifted substantially away from this standard over time, and now have very little connection to it. Instead, they now follow the more loosely defined standards known as U. Men's standard sizes were probably developed first during the American Revolutionary War , and they were in regular use by the American army during the War of for ready-made uniforms Felsenthal These were based on the chest measurement, with other measurements being assumed to be either proportional the circumference of the neck, waist, hips, and thighs or easily altered length of the inseam Felsenthal As this was largely successful in men, the same approach was attempted in the early 20th century for women using the bust as the sole measurement Felsenthal However, this proved unsuccessful because women's bodies have far more variety in shape.
A woman with an hourglass figure and a woman with an apple-shaped figure who have the same bust size will not have the same waist or hip sizes. This was a significant problem for mail-order companies, and several attempts at predictable, standard sizing were made Felsenthal In the s, the statisticians Ruth O'Brien and William Shelton received a Works Progress Administration grant to conduct the most ambitious effort to solve this problem.
Their team measured almost 15, women across the US. After discovering the complex diversity of women's actual sizes, which produced five to seven different body shapes, they proposed a three-part sizing system.
Each size would be the combination of a single number, representing an upper body measurement, plus an indicator for height short, regular, and long and an indication for girth slim, regular, and stout.
The various combinations of height and girth resulted in nine different sizes for each numerical upper-body measurement, which was highly impractical for manufacturing Felsenthal As a result, O'Brien and Shelton's work was rejected. In , the National Bureau of Standards invented a new sizing system, based on the hourglass figure and using only the bust size to create an arbitrary standard of sizes ranging from 8 to 38, with an indication for height short, regular, and tall and lower-body girth plus or minus.
The resulting commercial standard was not widely popular, and was declared voluntary in and withdrawn entirely in It has not been widely adopted. Women's sizes are divided into various types, depending on height. These charts give an indication of size only and are by no means exact as they vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, sometimes by a full inch up and down. There are multiple size types, designed to fit somewhat different body shapes.
Variations include the height of the person's torso known as back length , whether the bust, waist, and hips are straighter characteristic of teenagers or curvier like many adult women , and whether the bust is higher or lower characteristic of younger and older women, respectively.
Following chart can serve as an approximate guide to US female dress sizes. But keep in mind that many clothing manufacturers are using their own sizing guidelines and sometimes intentionally keep marking their products to run larger or smaller. Make sure to take your measurements barefoot and without any clothing besides undergarments to ensure the best fit. Bust: Wear a bra with little to no padding to measure your bust circumference. Pull the measuring tape around the center of your bust and relax your arms at your sides. By entering your email address, you agree to receive Charlotte Russe offers, promotions, and other commercial messages. You may unsubscribe at any time.