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How to Take Your Measurements

How To Take Your MeasurementsWhen using commercial patterns, you want to make sure you get the correct size, because retail sizing and pattern sizing is completely different.  The best way to do that is to learn how to take your measurements and compare it to the measurement chart.  You can find these measurement charts in the lookbook pattern books, on commercial pattern websites, and on the actual pattern envelopes.  We demonstrate not only the proper way to take your measurements, but also show the areas you should measure for women, men and children.  Once you have all the necessary information, you can use it to find the correct pattern size for you.  It is also helpful information for when you start altering commercial patterns or in creating your own patterns.  The correct measurements makes all the difference in making something that fits well or is ill-fitting.  Now that you're sewing, it's all in your hands.

If you find that you need to make any alterations to your patterns, based on your measurements, to check out some of our helpful pattern alteration tutorials here.

Categories:  Basic Video   |   intro to patterns   |   Professor Pincushion Posts   |   Videos

24 thoughts on “How to Take Your Measurements

  1. ProfessorPincushion

    If you’re using a commercial pattern, they usually will only give you the bust, waist, hip, and waist to hip measurement to go by, when deciding your sizing. Even if you take extra measurements, it might be difficult to know what to compare it to especially if there’s design ease added. You can use a fitting shell to help determine what alterations are needed for a better fit. Here’s one by McCall’s:

  2. Dami Ade

    You mentioned the curve issue that women usually have. I would like to know if taking measurements of just the waist and hips is sufficient enough, especially if one is extremely curvy.

  3. ProfessorPincushion

    for men’s measurements, I would take the waist measurement around the belly button area. With men, there isn’t the curve issue that women have and typically our natural waistline is above the belly button. If you’re making a shirt, I would still use chest measurement to choose the size. This is the best way to make sure that the shoulder area fits well. You can choose to go by the waist measurement but then it might appear too big on the top part of the shirt. If you do go by the chest measurement, you can try the increase waist alteration trick to make it a little larger on the bottom portion. Just test it with some cheap fabric until you get the fit perfected.

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