Standard Measurements for Kids Clothes

**Update: There is now a printable for sizes 3t – 12.**
Ta Da! I’m finally ready (maybe) to get things started on a series that I’m really excited about. I know most of you who make clothes for your children already know how to trace an existing piece of clothing to make a pattern. The problem is that not every size 3 is actually the same size, and most of the time I imagine you would want to make a copy of something because your kid has outgrown the garment. Then knowing how much to add to make a new one can be a pain in the tush.
So, for anyone who is interested, I’m going to show you how to draft patterns to specifically fit your child. You can use the standard measurements from the chart below, or take your child’s measurements and plug them into the table. Once you have the 3 basic patterns adjusted to fit your little one, then I’ll show you how to customize them for almost any style pattern you can imagine!
Here’s an example:
Once you have a pattern for this…
You can very easily make any of these…
I know it may sound a bit difficult, but it’s really not! To me it’s kind of like putting a piece of Ikea furniture together. There are a lot of connect A-B and E-G type of instructions, but with a ruler and pencil instead of wood and screws.
Here’s the chart I’ll be working from. Feel free to copy and print out the image. It will make following along a bit easier later if you don’t have to flip back and forth between different pages. I wish I had enough info to give you the 2T numbers, but I really can’t find them anywhere! Sorry. If you are trying to make clothes for someone that is size 2T/24 months you can either take the measurements for that child, or make a 3T pattern and shrink it down when we get to the fitting stage. That is up to you. Before you start anything though, I would check at least the chest, waist, and hip measurements on the chart to make sure that they are close to your child’s size.
So grab a tape measure and sharpen your pencils. By the time this is over, you should be able to make a pattern for almost any kids outfit you can come up with! (Or knock-off that outfit you’ve been drooling over, but know you’d never really spend that much on ; )
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20 thoughts on “Standard Measurements for Kids Clothes

  1. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I don't have children but I make items to sell in a craft co-op. I've done mostly up-cycled children's clothes so far. Denim skirts from the thrift stores. I add a machine embroidery and a ribbon belt. They sell very well but I'm interested in expanding my line. Your chart will make this sooooooo much easier.

    1. Kinda hard to reply to an Anonymous so I hope you check back…

      The chart above is a mash-up from a set of handouts I received in college. I can't say where exactly it came from, since we had similar charts from different retailers, designers, and fashion text books. If you are looking for more information of this type, I'd suggest looking for a Fashion Design: Pattern Making text book.

  2. I have a really important question… can you get this chart made up for more sizes! I am making clothes from newborn to five years of age to sell at my local market but every size chart is inconsistant with patterns I have and measurements I have taken this one seems to match but the age is higher than I need. I am having so much fun designing my own patterns though!

  3. Consider yourself hugged! Squeezed within an inch of your life.

    most useful set of measurements I've come across in years of searching. Thank You!

    1. Hi Miranda, You're so lucky your daughter still enjoys wearing things that you make for her! I'm pretty sure I have a 7-14 chart somewhere, but I'll have to go dig it out from the files. (aka that giant box of papers in the closet!) It might take me a week or so, but I'll definitely add it to my to do list.

  4. For us novice sewers, would it be possible to have a graphic that points out what length of dimension on the body each term refers to? I have no idea what the difference is between center and full length or length and slop of shoulder, etc. It would be helpful to have a graphic for this purpose. Thanks!

  5. Thanks for the chart, I am making clothes for African children so needed some measurements. The only thing I need to ask is what are your sizes as regards to ages? just approximately. They are probably different than here in the UK

  6. I have sewn clothes for my children, family and friends all my life (without any formal training) while working full time. I recently retired and would like to make children’s dresses and crafts for sale. I would like a chart that shows basic measurements for children from birth to about 10yrs. The chart is a bit too complicated. Thank you. Buchi

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