Alterations are Important! Women’s Size & Fit Checklist

Posted on September 27, 2018


Women's Clothing Alterations

Portions of the following are an excerpt from BJ Wilson’s An Expert’s Guide to Fashion Styling: A Workbook and Practical Guide

Now that Fall has officially arrived, our team has been busy getting our clients’ wardrobes ready for the seasonal shift. One of the biggest issues we see is ill fitting clothing that a simple trip to the tailor can fix. Proper fit makes all the difference for your image. When your clothing is the right length and fits properly, it gives the impression of being polished and put together. Women come in all shapes and sizes, so women’s clothing alterations are vital because we are all unique.

It takes years of practice to visually size customers accurately. If there is any doubt about a customer’s size, or if the customer doesn’t know their true size, it’s a good idea to take measurements.

Below we have included some simple size and fit tricks and tips to help you ensure you are getting the right fit for you, or your clients. Alterations don’t have to be complicated! Following our simple guide will produced tailored, chic results.

Here is a checklist that will help for women’s clothing alterations:

  • Pocketed Shirt: For pocketed shirts and pants, check that the hips do not bulge above pockets.
  • Jeans: For jeans, pants, and shorts check for unflattering creases that extend from the crotch.
  • Blouse: Make sure blouses and shirts do not pull at the buttons.
  • Striped Top: Make sure that the stripes hand correctly.
  • Knit Sweater: Knits should retain elasticity and shape in the neck, wrists and waist.
  • Zippered Jacket: Zippers should lie flat and remain easy to use.
  • Soft Fabric Bottom: Fabric should never collect around the knees or buttocks.
  • Blazer: With blazers and other sleeved garments, check the shoulders and sleeve length. Shoulder seems should not pull, and sleeves should extend to the wrist.
  • Dress Pants: Check the length of the pants that they are not too long or too short. Pants should fall halfway down the height of the shoe or lower.

Here are some guidelines to assist with particular figures:

Heavy: Vertical patterns are slimming for heavy individuals. Clothes that have inverted pleats, such as those on pleated pants, emphasize the slimming effect and work as verticals.

Busty: Busty individuals benefit from loose fitting shirts. Stay away from tight knits and resist the urge to pull and tuck. Well-chosen prints break up the bust line and have a flattering effect.

Flat-chested: Small bust lines are very attractive in clothing, but stay away from tight knits that accentuate the bust.

Long/Short Waist: Individuals with long or short waists have trouble with the fit of dresses. Two-piece garments with the same color or pattern can achieve the appearance of a dress without the drawbacks.

Short: Short individuals should stick with a single color tone to extend their height. For example, combine a navy skirt with a navy jacket.

Tall: Since length can present a problem for taller people, capris and cropped pants, if in style, become excellent options. Mid-calf and long skirts also work.

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