Online Shopping 101: How to Take Your Own Measurements

That sizing chart on your favorite shopping website isn’t just there for decoration. Once you get a grip on your proportions, you can (and should) consult it to ensure you arrive at the perfect fit.

You will need:
A soft tape measure, like the ones used for sewing
A pencil and paper for notes
Underwear and a bra (so measurements are more accurate)
A can-do attitude

Twenty Tees Viscose Lycra Tank Dress ($98) in Black

Wing Span

Photo:

Luke Wooden

There are a few different opinions when it comes to assessing your sleeve length. Some say that you should measure from your armpit to your wrist, but we’ve found it best to start from the tip of your shoulder.

Bust a Move

Photo:

Luke Wooden

Measure the fullest part of your chest with your arms down.  You might need a second pair of hands for this one, so recruiting a pal or a salesperson in the lingerie department isn’t a bad idea.

A Leg Up

Photo:

Luke Wooden

To calculate the length of your inseam, measure the distance from the very top of the inside of your thigh (at the, well, you know) to the bottom of your anklebone.

Hip Hip Hurray

Photo:

Luke Wooden

To determine the circumference of your hips, measure the widest part of your body at this point (roughly seven inches down from your navel, give or take).

Shoulder the Burden

Photo:

Luke Wooden

Measure your shoulders from tip to tip, drawing the tape measure snuggly across your back. This is a key step before buying tailored blazers, trench coats, and fitted tops in general.

Waist Not, Want Not

Photo:

Luke Wooden

Wrap the tape measure around the slimmest part of your waist. This should be somewhere between your navel and your ribcage. Need more help? Just bend sideways at the waist; the part that contracts is your natural waist.

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