How to Measure a Garment Correctly

How to Measure a Garment Correctly: Creating a Size Guide

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The Importance of Accurate Size Charts for Online Clothing Retailers

Having an accurate and easy-to-understand size chart is critical for clothing retailers operating online. Inconsistent or incorrect sizing is one of the major pain points for online shoppers when it comes to fashion ecommerce. An inaccurate size chart leads to ill-fitting clothes, returns, refunds, and negative reviews – all of which hurt revenue and reputation.

By taking the time to precisely measure your garments and create a detailed yet simple size guide, online retailers can boost customer confidence, enable better decision making, increase conversion rates, and reduce returns due to sizing issues.

Determining the Key Measurement Points for Your Garments

The first step towards creating your sizing guide is to carefully determine the most relevant measurement points on each garment type you sell. While aspects like bust, waist and hip measurements are common across multiple garments, each type of apparel also has its own specific points that need measuring.

Tops and Dresses
For tops and dresses, some key aspects to measure include:

Bust
Waist
Hip
Shoulder width
Sleeve length
Back length
Overall dress length
Bottoms
For pants, skirts and shorts, vital measurements include:

Waist
Hip
Inseam
Outseam
Thigh width
Front rise
Back rise
Understanding these product-specific nuances will help you create the most useful and tailored size chart for shoppers.

Gathering the Necessary Tools and Supplies

To measure garments accurately, having the right supplies is essential. Here are some must-have measuring tools:

Flexible measuring tape: Invest in a tape measure made of flexible material that contours to curves and stretches to meet edge-to-edge points across garments. Avoid stiff tape measures.
Tailor’s chalk: Chalk designed for marking fabric allows you to temporarily mark measurement points on garments that need measuring across multiple areas.
Large table: Use a large, clean table to lay garments flat during measuring to keep the fabric smooth and wrinkle-free.
Pen and paper: Record your measurements as you go to create your definitive size chart data.
Carefully Measuring Each Garment

With your tools ready, thoroughly measure each item, taking note of the following:

Shoulder Width
Measure from shoulder edge to shoulder edge across the back, below the neckline for tops.

Bust
Wrap the measuring tape around the fullest part of the bust, keeping it parallel to the floor. Measure two times to ensure accuracy.

Waist
Wrap the tape at the natural waistline, just above the belly button. Cinch gently without compressing skin. Measure two times to ensure accuracy.

Hip
Wrap tape around fullest part of hips, keeping it parallel to floor. Take care not to pull tape too tight. Measure two times to ensure accuracy.

Inseam
Fold pant in half at crotch. Measure from this fold to the hem.

Sleeve Length
Bend elbow at 90 degrees. Measure from center back neckline to wrist bone.

Garment Lengths
Lay item flat and measure from top edge to hem or bottom edge.

Create Size Chart Based on Measurements

With all measurements complete, create a comprehensive yet easy to follow size chart detailing all measurement points for each size offering (XS, S, M, L, XL etc). Make sure to:

Capture all relevant measurements for each garment type
List measurements in a consistent order across all sizes
Include both inches and centimeters
Use clear labeling and formatting
This detailed and professionally formatted size chart should be prominently displayed on product detail pages. Additionally, share an abridged version highlighting just bust, waist and hip measurements on category pages for quick reference.

Provide Visual Size Chart Instructions

Supplement your size chart with visual instructions illustrating how each measurement should be taken on the human body. This further reduces confusion and margin of error in customers self-measuring to determine their size.

Offer Size Recommendations Where Possible

If feasible, provide general recommendations on what sizes might be best suited based on usual body types and measurement ranges. This serves as an additional guidance tool for shoppers.

Be Responsive to Customer Feedback

Continuously monitor customer reviews and feedback related to sizing and fit. If you notice patterns of products running large or small, proactively update your size charts accordingly. Ongoing refinements ensure optimal accuracy.

Accurate size charts play a crucial role in customer conversion and retention in online fashion retail. By dedicating resources towards precision pattern measuring and size guide creation, brands can enable customers to with ease and confidence.