Taking measurements and choosing size

Sewing patterns from Threads by Caroline are based on an international standard. Meaning: we don't guess when we make our patterns, they're based on very detailed measurements. That's why we can include a size chart in all patterns. It helps you to choose the size that will fit best, as long as you can take the measurements of the one who will wear the garment.

We recommend you to ALWAYS measure yourself/the child or other person who will wear the garment before choosing a size. 


The most common measurements in our sewing patterns are chest width, waist width, hip width and length. In each pattern we let you know which measurements are most important, based on the pattern's design. For example, in our latest pattern Smilla, it's stated that you should choose a size based on the chest width and length. Because those measurements are most relevant for Smilla.


On a child: The chest width is measured directly on the body, no garments in the way. Ask the child to lift their arms so you can bring the tape measure around her body, over the nipples. Then let the child bring her arms down and stand relaxed. Don't hold the tape measure too tightly or too loosely.

On a woman: Use a bra when measuring chest width. Measure where the bust is largest. Don't hold the tape measure too tightly or too loosely. 

Tip! If you don't have a tape measure at hand you can use a piece of string. Use the string to measure around your body and
mark it or cut it where your measurement is. Afterwards, lay the string on the floor and measure it with a ruler or yardstick.


On a child: Measure directly on the body. Place the tape measure around the body, just above the belly button. Don't hold the tape measure too tightly or too loosely.

On a woman: The waist is located above the belly button and under the chest. If you bend your upper body to the side, your waist is where the body bends. Breath normally when taking your measurement and don't measure directly after a big meal.


On a child or woman: Measure directly on the body. Place the tape measure around the body at hip level, where the child/yourself is widest.

On a grown woman the hip is often located about 20 cm below the waist


On a child or woman: Measure from the crotch down to the floor.

If you're taking your own measurement it's often easier to take the inside leg measurement on a pair of pants that have a good length.


On a child: Let the child/yourself stand with the back against a wall. The feet should be touching each other and the heels should touch the wall. Stand relaxed and look straight ahead. Use a book or similar to measure straight from the wall to the top of the head.


Bring the tape measure around the head, from the forehead to the neck, where that measurement is largest.


Each pattern from Threads by Caroline includes a size guide. You can find it in the including tutorial and on our website. If you for example look at the sewing pattern Victoria you will find the size guide among the pictures on that page.

Pictured here is the size chart from Victoria.

In a coming blog post we'll describe for you how to mix sizes. If the child's chest measurement points to one size, but her length to another, you can blend between sizes. This is one of the many benefits of sewing vs. buying ready to wear garments.