Taking correctly the body measurements is the first most important step in having your garment come out correctly.
If you take a look below, you will notice 3 most important levels of measuring the body needed to draft a pattern.
We present to you below a 3D model of a female body, dressed in a bikini, to give you the correct understanding of where exactly you need to measure the body to get the most accurate measurements.
Measure the body over a thin layer of garment or the skin, to get the exact body measurement. If you measure over top of a thick sweather or a bulky abaya, your measurement will come out larger and your garment will be looser than desired.
When measuring the body, whether you are being measured or you are measuring another person, you must stand straight (like a soldier) and at your completely natural posture. If you fidget, stand incorrectly or make an extra effort to stand too straight which would be your unnatural posture (ie. keeping your shoulders too far back with your chest sticking out unnaturally) . . well . . that’s exactly how your garment will come out and when you do stand at your natural posture wearing that garment, the garment will not fit you correctly.
So, stand straight at your natural posture, look straight ahead and relax your shoulders down at your sides.
If you are being measured, do not try to look at what the person measuring you is doing – this causes your body to twist, hence the measurement will come out incorrect.
When wrapping the tape around the body, fold one end of the tape over the other side of the tape (see photo below).
Do not keep your fingers under the tape and do not cross over the tape downwards as that adds additional measurement.
– Measure horizontally across the widest level of the bust, ensuring that the measurement tape is wrapped horizontally around the body, and not hanging lower down at the back.
– You want to ensure that you measure lightly across the bust and not tightly, which can possibly happen due to the fact that the bust is soft
– Stand straight, breathe in and then breathe out and stand at your natural posture. This allows for the correct waist circumference to be measured. Do not suck your tummy in thinking that the garment will look better if you make the garment with a smaller waist. Garments that are too tight tend to make you look bigger and also make the garment look like it does not fit you correctly, not to mention that the garment that is too tight will be uncomfortable to wear. Besides, you can always take the garment in, but you can’t always take the garment out (loosen).
– Measure horizontally across the narrowest level of waist, underneath the rib cage and above the hip bone
– Different people have different waist levels, and if you are unsure where the waist is, place your hands or ask he person that you are measuring to place their hands at their waist and dig the hands into the waist. This will allow them to find where the area between the rib cage and the hip bone actually is. This method also works very well for the larger bodies.
– measure horizontally across the widest level of the hip
– once you place the measurement tape around the hip, slide the tape up and then down to ensure you got the widest area
– imagine that the measurement that you got you will use to make a metal ring out of . . well, that metal ring needs to be large enough for you to step into and pull over your hips . . if it doesn’t, neither will the garment
Correctly measuring around the circumference of the body (below)
Incorrectly measuring with fingers under the tape (below)
Incorrectly measuring by crossing over the tape downwards (below)