Tag Archives: Clothes sizing

Jeans that fit waist and hips

In years gone by, the waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) has been used to determine a woman’s health, fertility, attractiveness, and even cognitive ability! Whilst we won’t be using the ratio here today, the difference between the waist and hip circumferences can help to find that elusive pair of jeans that fit both your waist and your hips.

First off, we need to do some measuring…waist hip difference

To measure your waist

  • Wrap the measure around you at your narrowest point (likely to be midway between your last rib bone and the top of your hip bone).
  • If you are carrying most of your weight around your middle and it’s difficult to know where to take the measurement, place the tape one inch above your belly button.

To measure your hips

  • Wrap the measure around you at your widest point (this is approximately 8 inches/20cm lower than where you measured your waist).

Then to calculate the difference, take the waist measurement away from the hip measurement

Hip – Waist = Difference

e.g. 43 inches – 33 inches = 10 inches

The bigger the difference, the curvier your figure.

With our access to all the High Street retailer’s size charts, we can see that the average difference between the waist and hip circumference is 10 inches and is therefore, the most catered for. The smallest difference between the waist and hip circumference is 8.5 inches, and the largest difference is 12 inches.

To help you shop at the right store for your shape, please find below a list of stores classified by the difference in their jeans’ waist to hip measurement.

8.5 inches

Ted Baker

9 inches

East, Miss Selfridge, Oasis, Pilot, Planet, Wallis, Windsmoor

9.5 inches

H & M, M&Co, Monsoon

10 inches

bhs, Bon Marche, CC, Dorothy Perkins, Fat Face, French Connection, Great Plains, Hobbs, Jacques Vert, Jaeger, Joules, Kaliko, Karen Millen, Long Tall Sally, Minuet Petite, New Look, O’Neill, Peacocks, Phase Eight, Precis Petite, Reiss, River Island, The White Company, Uniqlo, Whistles

11 inches

Jane Norman, Marks & Spencer (M&S Collection), White Stuff

12 inches

Levi’s Bold Curve, American Apparel (High-waist)

 

Please note some retailers are not listed here as they do not publish a hip measurement or they use various waist to hip differentials depending on the size.

 

Tall clothing collections on the High Street

The third, and last, in a series of blog posts about clothing collections on the High Street, we tell you where you can go to get clothes that fit you if you are tall.

Aside from our Fit Finder (where you can find jeans that fit you in seconds, no matter what your size or shape), we thought we would list the stores that have tall clothing collections; those that have been specifically designed for women who are 5’7”/1.7m or taller:

Other stores that sell inseams equal to or greater than 35”/89cm include;

Please let us know if we have missed out a High Street store that you know has a tall range, or sells an inseam greater than 35”/89cm and we will add them to the lists.

We’ve compiled this series of posts to make it easier for you to shop on the High Street.  Remember that sizes should just be used for purchasing – don’t define who you are by them.

Happy shopping!

Updated 12.3.2015 (* denotes affiliate link)

 

Petite clothing collections on the High Street

The second in a series of blog posts about clothing collections on the High Street, we tell you where you can go to get clothes that fit you if you are petite.

Aside from our Fit Finder (where you can find jeans that fit you in seconds, no matter what your size or shape), we thought we would list the stores that have petite clothing collections; those that have been specifically designed for a diminutive figure:

For other stores that sell items with inseams less than or equal to 29”/71cm, please see the ‘Shopping for jeans by inseam‘ post.

The lists below show you where you can get clothes in sizes below a size eight, but unlike petite collections, items in these sizes are just scaled down from the store’s target size so may not fit your shape as nicely.

Size 4

Diesel, Dorothy Perkins, Miss Selfridge, Reiss, Topshop

Size 6

Coast, Crew Clothing, Diesel, Dorothy Perkins, Fat Face, French Connection, H & M, Hobbs, Jack Wills, Jaeger, Jane Norman, Karen Millen, L. K. Bennett, Miss Selfridge, Monsoon, New Look, Oasis, Phase Eight, Pilot, Reiss, River Island, Select, Topshop, Warehouse, White Stuff

We’ve compiled these posts to make it easier for you to shop on the High Street.  Please let us know if we have missed out a High Street store that you know has a petite collection, sells clothes in sizes 4-6, or sells an inseam less than or equal to 29”/74cm and we will add them to the lists.

Next week: Tall clothing collections on the High Street

(* Affiliate link)

Updated 12.3.2015

 

Plus-size clothing collections on the High Street

The first in a series of blog posts about clothing collections on the High Street, we tell you where you can go to get clothes that fit you, if you are plus-size, tall or petite.

At High Street Fit Finder we deal with a lot of data, and patterns emerge when viewing this data collectively.  When analysing the spread of sizes over the High Street, we realised that if you are larger than a “size 18”, taller than 5’6”, or petite in either build or height, shopping is likely harder for you than most.

size availability

Clothes shopping should be accessible to everyone, but in reality, if your size falls outside of the retailer’s “standard sizes” (read, target demographic) it can be difficult to find clothes that fit you whilst out shopping on your High Street.

So, aside from our Fit Finder (where you can find jeans that fit you in seconds), we thought we would list the stores that have plus-size clothing collections, those that have been specifically designed for a larger figure:

The list below also shows you where you can get clothes in sizes above an 18, but unlike plus-size collections, these are just scaled up from a paper pattern so may not fit your shape as nicely.

Size 20

bhs, Bon Marche, CC, Dorothy Perkins, East, French Connection, Great Plains, Hobbs, Jacques Vert, Joules, Kaliko, Laura Ashley, Long Tall Sally, M&Co, Marks & Spencer, Monsoon, Next, Peacocks, Phase Eight, Planet, Viyella, Wallis, Windsmoor

Size 22

bhs, Bon Marche, Dorothy Perkins, Jacques VertLong Tall Sally, M&Co, Marks & Spencer, Monsoon, Next, Peacocks, Windsmoor

Size 24

Bon Marche, Jacques Vert, Long Tall Sally, M&Co, Marks & Spencer, Next, Peacocks, Windsmoor

Sizes 26 and 28

Bon Marche, M&Co, Next

Sizes 30 and 32

Bon Marche

Please let us know if we have missed out a High Street store that you know has either a plus-size collection or sells clothes in sizes 20-32 and we will add them to the lists.

Next week: Petite clothing collections on the High Street

(* Affiliate link)

Updated 12.3.2015

 

Clothes Sizing in the UK – why it is like it is?

“How many sizes are you on the UK High Street?” We recently asked our Facebook fans that very question and there wasn’t a single response that stated just one size.

Society has known for a while that no one person is just one ‘standard’ size, but being several sizes can result in confusion and dissatisfaction when shopping.  So, how did the current sizing system in the UK come about?

Clothes sizing in the UK - timelineBefore mass production, clothes and alterations were made by either the local tailor or a family member handy with a needle and thread.  Therefore, fit was never an issue and the notion of ‘standard sizes’ hadn’t even been conceived.

As the population increased, and industrialisation allowed for clothing production on a mass scale, a way of producing clothes that fitted the maximum number of people whilst delivering economically efficient processes was needed.

And soon enough, some clever soul with an aptitude for anthropometry noted that the deviation of key body measurements of the general population was relatively small, and could be increased and decreased in linear increments.  This, along with the introduction of the paper pattern, led to paper grading.  Each ‘grade’ was then labelled, resulting in the formation of sizes and the standard sizing system.

In 1957, with this process firmly established by clothing manufacturers, the National Joint Clothing Council compiled the first British Standard of Women’s Measurements and Sizes.  The anthropometric data in this publication formed the basis of size guides for manufacturers and retailers alike, and was used until 1982 when it was replaced by the British Standard ISO 3635 Size designation of clothes – Definitions and body measurement procedure.

The new Standard utilised the same data from 1957, but defined a set of sizes from 8 to 32, quoted in centimetres. It was not, however, compulsory to use.  As a result, retailers soon started to customise the “standard sizes” in order to flatter their target market, i.e. two garments from two retailers could be the same size but their dimensions could differ greatly.  This practice is what we now refer to as ‘vanity sizing’.

During the 1980s and 1990s, as shopping became a pastime and demand increased, retailers globalised.  Firstly, in an effort to cut costs and increase profit margins, they sent manufacturing abroad.  And secondly, they were expanding into other countries, taking their products to markets where their reputation preceded them.  Yet, with each new country, a new target demographic was identified and sizing guide produced, again using the same “standard” sizing system of either the retailer or the host country.

By 2001, ‘vanity sizing’ and the differences in fit between clothes of the same size were beginning to get out of hand and prompted the European Union to issue a new Standard (BS EN 13402) which intended to replace all existing Standards in member countries with one in which actual measurements (cm) for bust, waist and hips are used.   Again, the anthropometric data used to define a size was not updated and the Standard was not compulsory, which means to date no country, let alone retailer, has adopted this Standard.

Today, in 2013, the anthropometric data utilised in the production of clothes is still the small census from 1957 and the “standard” sizes are becoming more and more disparate with the progression of vanity sizing.

As you can see, the Retail Industry has changed significantly over the last 250 years.  Our body shapes have changed greatly too; due to changing lifestyles, societal pressures, diets, and merging cultures.  Yet it’s each to its own (size guide) for the retailers, and shoppers are stuck with the age-old notion of being just one size.  Consequently, size-related returns are increasing rapidly, costing both parties.

We think it’s about time something changed.  High Street Fit Finder is tackling vanity sizing on the High Street with its shopping comparison site that uses the retailer’s size guides collectively.  It enables customers to see what size they are in each store and allows retailers to tackle the issue of fit together.  All we need is for you to spread the word and use highstreetfitfinder.com to buy your jeans (more clothing items coming soon) and perhaps bit by bit we can change the shape of clothes sizing in the UK.

Many thanks to Natalie Baines for editing this blog post.