When it comes to shopping online, size can be a tricky thing. You might order something in your usual size and then find that it is either too big or too small. As a result, you have to return the item and start all over again with another one of the same style. This can be frustrating for anyone who has ever tried shopping online!
Step 1 - choose your fit
There are three types of fit to know: loose fit, tight fit, and good fit.
- Loose Fit - This type of shirt will be more relaxed in the sleeves and torso. The fabric has a little bit of give in it so you can comfortably move your arms without feeling like they're getting stuck on the material.
- Tight Fit - A tight-fitting piece will hug your body, making it ideal for showing off your musculature and curces if that's something that interests you! For those who aren’t interested in showing off their muscles and curves (or just don’t have any), a tight-fitting piece may not be the best choice because it can make them look smaller than they actually are.
- Good Fit - A good fitting piece should show off both body tone and curves while still maintaining an airy feel overall; not too constricting but also not too baggy either since this would defeat its purpose entirely which is providing comfort for whoever wears it!
Step 2 - invest in a measuring tape
You may have seen it many times when you waled past a local tailor's or dry cleaners' store - dressmakers and tailors tend to wear it around their neck, their mannequins or over the sewing machine. This tape does not cost the earth and is one of the best tools to learn how to use if you want to get your online shopping right every time. So, invest in one!
Did you know? There are only five key measurements you need to know to make every online clothing purchase successful. Those are:
- Shoulder to waist
- Waist to floor
Pro tip 1: tie a string around your waist to use it as a guide to measure take the correct 'shoulder to waist' and 'waist to floor' measurements
Pro tip 2: keep your finger between the tape measure and your body to take measurements for a good fit. This is how dressmakers and tailors do - it is a tried and tested technique
Pro tip 3: we tend to be wider around the waist after a big meal. So if you notice that your body is prone to such fluctuations, take your measurements half way through the day, after a light meal.
Step 3 - learn the secrets designers don't tell you
Let's be honest: no one knows exactly what size they are. That's why it's important to understand how sizing works before you buy anything online.
Here are three things that most people don't know about sizing charts:
- Size charts are locally-created guides for pattern cutters to be guided by when creating new clothing items. Once a piece has been tailored, its measurements differ from a size guide 95% of the time!
- When possible, use the size guide as a reference, not an exact representation of what a clothing piece will measure once it arrives through your letterbox—unless specified otherwise by the brand (and if you see something labeled "true to size," run away). This is because most clothes are cut to fit an average size and height person—with some room around belly area and sleeves—and not necessarily YOU specifically
Half-size charts are ideal, but they are very costly to bring into existence, especially for independent brands who work with small teams; therefore they may not exist at all! If you happen to find yourself between sizes (like I often do), you'll win if you buy a size that fits you on the widest part of your body (this does not apply to flare dresses as it is recommended that these be purchased according to bust measurement).