Taking accurate body measurements is one of the keys to a great fit. Whether you choose to use a commercial pattern or draft it from measurements, having accurate measurements is critical to the success of your final garment.
All you need is a tape measure!
While it's best to have someone else take your measurements, you can do it yourself. Just stand in front of a mirror so that you can see that you have the tape in the right position.
You should be measured wearing only your undergarments. However, close-fitting clothing will be fine. I usually ask my customers to slip into yoga pants and a form-fitting tank top.
Because the body is made of soft tissue, it can be a bit difficult to know exactly how tight to pull the tape around the body. The tape should be a bit snug, but not tight - it should not "cut in" or make an indentation in the body. It should not be loose, either!
Tips For Accurate Measurements
- If possible have someone else take your measurements
- Keep the measuring tape level
- Don’t suck in or push out.
- Wear as little as possible or very form-fitting clothing while taking your measurements.
How to Measure:
Bust: Measure the circumference of your chest. Place one end of the tape measure at the fullest part of your bust, wrap it around (under your armpits) to get the measurement.
Natural Waist: Measure the circumference of your waist. Use the tape to circle your waist at your natural waistline. This is located above your belly button and below your ribcage. (If you bend to the side, the crease that forms is your natural waistline.) Don’t suck in your stomach, or you’ll get a false measurement.
Hip: Measure the circumference of your hips. Start at one hip and wrap the tape measure around your rear, around the other hip, and back to where you started. Make sure the tape is over the largest part of your buttocks. Make sure the tape is level, try to do it in front of a mirror.
Rise: Measure from your crotch up to your natural waist in the front.
Inseam: This is the distance from the uppermost inner part of your thigh to the bottom of your ankle.
With help: While you’re wearing a pair of pants, have a friend stretch the tape from your crotch to the bottom of your ankle.
Without help: If you have a pair of pants that fit you perfectly measure the inseam of the pants, again from the crotch to the hem.
Thigh: Measure the circumference of the fullest part of your thigh. Wrap the tape measure around your thigh from front to back and then around to the front.
Print the FREE Let's Learn To Sew Body Measurement Guide to use while recording your measurements.
If you have any questions about taking your body measurements for sewing let me know!