Discussing Lay-Flat Measurements & Online Shopping

(My eyes were cut out of the film. Oops, sorry! It happened when compressing for you tube.)

Shopping Online can be kind of scary sometimes. The fear is buying something that you fell in love with only for it to not fit once it arrives. (Then what?) Fortunately, if you are buying vintage, unlike many modern retailers, it is likely that the seller will offer the important measurements of each individual garment, plus a few extras, to help ensure that you are buying an item that is worth the purchase.

What does measurement information really mean to you?

Last week, I had a customer inquire about lay-flat measurements included in my shoppe listing. She was gearing up for her first Online purchase (3 cheers!). She contacted me and asked a slew of questions that I broke down for her with explanations to help her understand the measurements and to avoid a disappointing purchase. It dawned on me how many potential customers never ask about fit and measurements and pass up purchasing from the store or never even venture Online because of the confusion around fit when they cannot try on an item before buying it.

Lay-Flat Garment v. Body Measurements

Lay-flat measurements are taken from the garment, it self. Body measurements are your anatomical measurements.

A body measurement, your personal measurement, will act as the guide to know which clothing will fit and which will not without ever trying it on. For example, if you are a size 26″ in pants, purchasing a size 25″ would be foolish. So it’s fairly logical to say never purchase smaller than your body measurement. It is better to scale up about 1 inch to allow your clothes to fit naturally and have room.

While pant measurements are pretty straight forward. Tops, dresses, & outerwear may not be, particularly, if the fit is meant to be slouchy. So note the fit described  about each garment. If the listed measurements seem many inches bigger, it may be intentionally so.

Key Measurements That Help to Determine Size

  • Bust
  • Waist
  • Shoulders

Secondary Measurements to Consider How Garments Will Fit

  • Sleeve Length
  • Arm Opening
  • Overall Length
  • Inseam

Tips to Online Clothes Shopping:

  1. If you do not know your body measurements, take measurements from a close-fitting item in your closet. Use this garment to compare other items to when shopping Online.
  2. If retailer’s bust and waist measurements appear drastically smaller than the norm. Be sure to double them.
  3. When you see the term “Open” within measurements, this often means that this item is meant to drape and, therefore, has very wide measurements that wouldn’t be useful to compare your body measurement too. Note the fit of the garment and the estimated size.
  4. Have questions about fit or size that haven’t been addressed? Contact the retailer. They are always willing to go above and beyond so you will have the best experience shopping their store.
(click images for source)

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