Measurements for "Made to Measure" Dresses
To have one of our dresses "made to measure" means we will make an entirely new pattern for the dress based on your individual measurements and so the dress will be tailored specially for you. You can have this done by taking the measurements yourself and sending them to us. This will cost £35-£85 more when ordering online than having the dress made in a standard size. Alternatively, you can make an appointment to come for a fitting with us in our Brighton shop which will cost £50-£120 more than ordering the same dress in a standard size online.
These are the full set of measurements that we need for our "made to measure" dresses. There is a diagram at the bottom to help show how to take them.
Please take the measurements in your underwear, preferably while wearing the type of bra/underwear that you will wear under the finished dress (we recommend a supportive non-strapless bra). We are looking for the actual measurements of your body when relaxed, so no need to add any ease to your measurements, but also please don't pull the tape measure so tight that it squeezes your body at all or is uncomfortable.
Tip: We recommend tying a piece of ribbon around your natural waist first (smallest part of your waist) as this will help you to take some of your measurements
Overbust - Take this around your chest above your bust, with the tape measure going under each armpit and around your back and meeting at the front.
Bust - This is not the same as your bra size, take this around the fullest part of your bust, taken whilst wearing whatever type of bra you would normally wear under the dress. Take the tape measure around the back and meet at the front.
Underbust measurement - Take this around the ribcage just under the bust
Natural waist - It is important that this measurement is taken at the smallest part of your waist, this is normally 1 or 2 inches above your belly button. This may be higher than where you are used to wearing your clothing. Our dresses are a vintage style fit, which sits higher on the waist compared to most modern clothing.
Low Waist - This is around the circumference of your tummy, approximately 1 inch below the belly button
Shoulder seam to underbust - Take this from the top of your shoulder with the tape measure going over the middle of one breast to the bottom of your bra (see photo) This is to make sure that the top of the waistband sits snugly just underneath your bust
Underbust to Natural Waist - This measurement is taken from underneath your bust, where you took the previous measurement to. You can use the under wiring of your bra as a starting point and take it down to where you took the natural waist measurement (this is where the ribbon comes in handy!)
This is to determine the width of the waistband on the dress, the standard width is 10.5cm/4 inches but the waistband may need to be a little narrower if you are petite or high waisted, or a little wider if you are taller or have a long torso.
Back length - Take this from the nape of your neck, the ‘knobbly bit’, down to your natural waist (again, the ribbon!)
Arm Scye - This is the measurement that determines the size of the arm holes of the garment. Please take this measurement all the way around the top of your shoulder and under your armpit so that the tape measure goes all the way around and meets at the top (see photo)
Shoulder width - This should be taken straight across the back of the shoulders, from the corner of one shoulder to the corner of the other. Please try to do this without curving the tape measure around the sides of the arms.
Skirt Length - Our default skirt length tends to be knee length, so if you would like the skirt shorter or longer, say around mid calf or ‘Tea length’, then please let us know and also take the measurement accordingly. Stand in front of a mirror and measure this by taking the tape measure from your natural waist down the middle of one leg to where you would like the skirt to finish (try not to lean forward when you do this!)
Upper arm circumference - Gently take the tape measure around the fullest part of your upper arm
Above elbow - The circumference of your arm just above the elbow
Bra Size - This can be approximate as we know it will be different in different shops.
Height - Feet or cms are both fine.
Extra Measurements needed for wiggle/pencil dresses:
Hips/Bottom - take this around the fullest part of your hips/bottom (this is normally quite low down around your bottom)
Upper Thighs - take this around the top of both thighs just underneath your bottom
If you are happy to do so then you can also include a full body photo of yourself (this can be done while fully clothed) and add any extra information you can give us regarding your shape and any issues you commonly encounter in the fit of your clothes. This will help us ensure a good fit and might also help us identify any anomalies (inaccuracies) in the measurements you have given us.
Also, please note that this style of dress is designed to be snug fitting on the waist and close fitting on the bodice and so we generally do not add ease to the waist measurements and only add 1cm of ease to the bust and underbust measurements. However, if you do not find snug fitting, non-stretchy clothes comfortable then please let us know and we can put some extra breathing room into your garment.
If you would like to see more detailed instructions with photographs for how to take each measurements please view or download here.