Taking measurements and choosing size
Sewing patterns from Threads by Caroline are based on an international standard. Meaning: we don't guess when we make our patterns, they're based on very detailed measurements. That's why we can include a size chart in all patterns. It helps you to choose the size that will fit best, as long as you can take the measurements of the one who will wear the garment.
We recommend you to ALWAYS measure yourself/the child or other person who will wear the garment before choosing a size.
The most common measurements in our sewing patterns are chest width, waist width, hip width and length. In each pattern we let you know which measurements are most important, based on the pattern's design. For example, in our latest pattern Smilla, it's stated that you should choose a size based on the chest width and length. Because those measurements are most relevant for Smilla.
A: CHEST WIDTH ON A CHILD
The chest width is measured directly on the body, no garments in the way. Ask the child to lift their arms so you can bring the tape measure around her body, over the nipples. Then let the child bring her arms down and stand relaxed. Don't hold the tape measure too tightly or too loosely.
A: UPPER BUST ON A WOMAN
Use a bra when measuring your bust width. Measure around your upper chest and just under the armpits.
Also, in general: Breath normally when taking your measurement and don't measure directly after a big meal. Measure directly on the body. Don't hold the tape measure too tightly or too loosely.
B: FULL BUST ON A WOMAN
Measure where the bust is largest, over the nipples. Wear a bra when measuring.
Tip! If you don't have a tape measure at hand you can use a piece of string. Use the string to measure around your body and mark it or cut it where your measurement is. Afterwards, lay the string on the floor and measure it with a ruler or yardstick.
B: WAIST WIDTH
On a child: Measure directly on the body. Place the tape measure around the body, just above the belly button. Don't hold the tape measure too tightly or too loosely.
On a woman: The waist is located above the belly button and under the chest, it's at the smallest part of your torso and right underneath your rib cage. If you bend your upper body to the side, your waist is where the body bends. Breath normally when taking your measurement and don't measure directly after a big meal.
C: HIP WIDTH
On a child or woman: Measure directly on the body. Place the tape measure around the body at hip level, where the child/yourself is widest. Keep in mind that this point is probably lower than you think. It's not around the top of your hip bone but actually around the largest part of your hips/bottom.
On a grown woman the hip is often located about 20 cm below the waist.
D: INSIDE LEG
On a child or woman: Measure from the crotch down to the floor.
If you're taking your own measurement it's often easier to take the inside leg measurement on a pair of pants that have a good length.
On a child: Let the child/yourself stand with the back against a wall. The feet should be touching each other and the heels should touch the wall. Stand relaxed and look straight ahead. Use a book or similar to measure straight from the wall to the top of the head.
F: HEAD CIRCUMFERENCE
Bring the tape measure around the head, from the forehead to the neck, where that measurement is largest.
Each pattern from Threads by Caroline includes a size guide. You can find it in the including tutorial and on our website. If you for example look at the sewing pattern Victoria you will find the size guide among the pictures on that page.
Pictured here is the size chart from Victoria.
In a coming blog post we'll describe for you how to mix sizes. If the child's chest measurement points to one size, but her length to another, you can blend between sizes. This is one of the many benefits of sewing vs. buying ready to wear garments.