International Clothing Size Conversion

International Clothing Size Conversion
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International Clothing Size Conversion is tricky.    How do you shop for clothes?  By looking for a Small, Medium or Large or do you look for a specific size such as a 10 or 12?

How often do you walk into a boutique or clothing store and when asked by the sales person “what size are you looking for?”, you quickly answer “I usually wear a Medium”.

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a range of standard sizes throughout the garment industry – all over the world.  This problem is made even more complex when you look through the dress racks of high end department stores and come across a special deal on an item of clothing manufactured in a different country.

“No way!  I am not a 46!”  Actually, I am.  I’ve aged gracefully into that size.

Please note that some countries label their knitwear differently than their clothes manufactured from woven fabrics.  This is true across Europe where knits can be grouped in a range of sizes.  For example, a sweater labeled as “Small” here in the United States is tagged with the “46-48” label in Europe.

A dress in a U.S. size 6 (Small in any country) is tagged a 10 in the United Kingdom, a 36 in Germany and just to make things even more interesting, it becomes a 38 in other European countries.

I know, why make international clothing size conversion so complicated?

So much for the Euro Zone.  It does not apply to clothing.  European labeling requirements vary from country to country but be sure to visit the OTEXA website where you will find detailed information about clothing sizes and related specific measurements for several different European countries.

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International Clothing Size Conversion:

Guidelines for Australia, Italy, The United Kingdom, France and Japan as compare to U.S. Sizes

XS S M L XL XXL
Bust 80cm 85cm 90cm 95cm 100cm 105cm
Waist 60cm 65cm 70cm 75cm 80cm 85cm
Hips 85cm 90cm 95cm 100cm 105cm 110cm
Australia 6 (0) 8 (1) 10 (2) 12 (3) 14 (4) 16 (5)
Italy 40 42 44 46 48 50
UK 8 10 12 14 16 18
US 2 4 6 8 10 12
France 36 38 40 42 44 46
Japan 7 9 11 13 15 17

 

We recently had a request for conversion information for a garment with a 48 tag.  Depending on the country of origin, the garment could be an XL in Italy, or the equivalent of a 1X in French clothing.  Do not assume the 48 means centimeters or inches.  A 48 can be compared to anything from a U.S. size 20, a ladies size 14 or maybe a 16,  and while we’re at it – even a Medium 38.

Best bet? Do what I do.  Carry a small fabric measuring tape in your purse when you go out shopping for clothes.  Measure across the chest of a sweater or blouse at the underarms, from seam to seam.  Multiply that by 2.  Now give yourself at least 2 inches of added breathing room (I call it wearing ease).  Calculate the total.

Does it fit?   Now, forget what the label says.  You’ve just made your own international clothing size conversion.


Clothing Conversion Tool For International Sizes
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