Monday, April 1, 2013

Take Your Measurements

Today we are going to go over how to take proper body measurements, and I am beyond excited about this blog post! I have a small vintage shop on etsy, Seoul Sold, and I never fail to get questions about the fit or how to take proper measurements. I got so many questions about achieving the perfect fit that I decided to share how I went about measuring the clothes in my shop.

Initially, I grew interested in mastering the skill of measuring because of moving to South Korea, where there are untold amounts of pretty clothing, but you are usually not allowed to try ANYTHING on before you buy it. Not being allowed to try clothes on before a purchase is a nerve racking ordeal especially when you are not used to judging how the clothes will fit your body. Thankfully with a bit of practice and an inexpensive tape measure I am well armed in the Korean clothing stores.

When I look at a piece of clothing there are a few major categories that I initially assess and they are:
Everything else is just details because if these 4 major areas don't fit then the clothing item goes back on the rack! Non-negotiable! I have to be this strict because I am quite the clothes lover, but I once had a closet full of ALMOST right clothing. I have vowed to never again have a lackluster closet plus I save money and feel good about being thrifty. Hooray!

I got the body diagram from Modcloth, and you can find it, here.

Here's how you do it:

Bust: Measure from the fullest part of your bust and around your back.
Flat Measurement: Measure from armpit to armpit and double for the total measurement.

Waist: Find the smallest part of your waist, this is your natural waist and measure from there. I repeat find the smallest part of your waist above your belly button. The small of your waist is generally 2-3 inches above your waist.
Flat Measurement: Find the smallest part of the garment's waist and measure from end to end, double for total measurement.

Hips: Find the fullest part of your bottom and measure from there around your hips.
Flat Measurement: Look for the fullest part of the garment below the waist and measure from end to end, double for full measurement.

Length: Measure from the top of your shoulder to the bottom of the garment.
Flat Measurement: Measure from the top of of the garment's shoulder to its bottom.

Ever since I took a little bit of time to get acquainted with my tape measure I can honestly say that my understanding of my body and how to properly dress it has grown by untold amounts. In fact, I have grown so comfortable with measuring that I can even eyeball clothing with great accuracy, which is an invaluable skill in South Korea where you are often not allowed to try on clothing at all!

I hope this post helps you understand how to get the most out of your tape measure and achieving your perfect fit and closet.

Have a wonderful day and and keep shining bright all you beauties!


  1. This is SUCH a great post - I don't think enough people know their measurements or how to do it and it's so helpful when buying clothing online. DEfinitely one of the most useful posts I've ever read

    1. Katherine,
      Thank you so much for the comment and I hope that my post helped clear up confusion for people who can't actually try the clothing on.

  2. Oh, I can't imagine not being able to try on clothes before you buy them in a store! Crazy! This post is really helpful for me, not only for buying clothes, but also because I'm learning to sew and need to take proper measurements for that too!

    1. Erica,

      You have no idea how frustrating it was when I initially moved here, but I have made due. You are more industrious than me and I hope your sewing does well! I've wanted to learn to sew from patterns, but just never had the time.