Posted by Edelweiss Patterns on May 24, 2011
As with most pattern companies, we use the standard American pattern sizing chart, which looks quite a bit different than what you may be used to seeing in store-bought sizes. Back when women made all their own dresses at home, these were the standard sizes for the sewing patterns they used. It wasn’t until the twentieth century brought commercially-produced garments into vogue that clothing stores started using the idea of “vanity sizing” to sell customers on their products. So if a woman usually wore a Misses size 12, the garment industry changed down to a size 6. After all, who wouldn’t rather say, “I’m a size 2,” than, “I’m size 8,”?
So that’s the history of why these sizes look different than what you are probably familiar with. Keep in mind that you’re not supposed to choose a size by your size number, but only by your measurements! And don’t worry about what size the pattern companies say you are, because if you compare this chart with the standard misses size chart for a clothing store, you will find that the measurements for patterns size 12 is the same as size 6 in off-the-rack wear. So it really doesn’t mean you’re any bigger or smaller than you thought you were; just go by your measurements, fit the pattern before you sew, and you should be fine! You can view our patterns here. (Click on sizing chart for a larger view.)