Saturday, 19 January 2013

Sussing out the sizes and (no) snow day

I tend to do a lot of Internet shopping as it suits my lifestyle, but recently I've become a bit disheartened in it. Almost all of my recent orders have been sent back, for sizing reasons. I think it's getting increasingly harder to shop online, this may be something to do with the differences between the standard sizes in shops. Apparently there is no standard size guidelines in the UK so each store just sets their own sizes. Now this would be easy enough if all you had to do was figure out your size in each shop and simply buy that size when ordering online, but I have found that sizes vary within shops also, which is a bit of a nightmare. My recent Mango order all went back apart from the contrast sleeve jacket, which fitted fine but this was the only item that was sized using small, medium, large method. I found the rest of the Mango order far too big but an ASOS order I received the same day with the same size jeans were far too small. This really annoyed me as none of the three pairs of jeans I ordered fitted, I would have put it down to either loosing weight or piling on a few Christmas pounds if all the items were either too small or too big, but because it was a mixture I think it's just a case of different standards of size. I kind of fall between two sizes, so I have to take a bit of a chance with which one to pick each time.

I have clothes in my wardrobe ranging from size 6 - 12 all fitting me at the minute. So from my experiences here's my interpretation of the sizing in the main high street stores I would shop in.

Topshop: I think Topshop runs a little small, I'm definitely the bigger of my two sizes in jeans here, but usually the smaller size in tops.

ASOS: this is a tricky one as they stock own brand items as well as most of the major high street shops, but I find ASOS brand clothes slightly small on the bottom half but they can also be very gapey on the top half which is a bit of a nightmare when buying dresses.

Reiss: they have generous sizing or 'vanity sizing' in my opinion, I'm definitely the smaller of my two sizes and can even go down another size sometimes when I'm having a particularly good day.

H&M: while I buy a lot in H&M it really annoys me as their sizing is a bit all over the place, especially with trousers and jeans so I rarely buy these items over the Internet as it seems to really depend on the cut, I have the exact same trousers from H&M that I bought the same day in two difference sizes, so figure that one out!

Warehouse & Oasis: I find warehouse and Oasis true to size, this is probably because their clothes are aimed at an older demographic so they are more inclined to have a bit of a curvier shape with hips and boobs, rather than the teenage girl type shape.

Zara: Zara probably runs quite small, but I have had instances in the past where I have ordered two pairs of jeans the same size and one are perfect and one didn’t even go past my calf. Now they were different cuts of jean to be honest, one being skinny jeans and one being straight cut, but I don’t think there should be that much of a difference between them. In my experience their tops are true to size.

Mango: After my recent order I would say Mango have big sizing, which I was shocked at. I assumed because they were a European retailer that they would have quite a small fit. I could have went down a size in the jeans and possibly two sizes in the tops.

New Look: I find New Look pretty much true to size and could probably shop online here pretty easy.

Next: Next has probably the biggest sizing on the high street that I have ever come across, I sometimes find even their smallest size can be too big for me here, it was great when I was pregnant though as I was only really wearing my own size or up one size here so that made me feel like less of a heffalump!

Dorothy Perkins: I find trousers true to size but I find their tops a very generous fit.

Now I'm sure most people have had completely different experiences in these same shops, as obviously no two of us are the same size, but these are generally the rules I run with. For the minute I think I'll stick to good ole fashioned walking into a shop, lifting something and heading to the changing room - I think my postman will be best pleased!! 

Here's today's outfit, I had to do a bit of updating as the day went on as it was baltic and I was outside for a while with my wee man.
H&M navy jumper
H&M navy blazer
Topshop baxter skinnies
Navy Converse
Navy Hunter wellies
Dunnes fur hat
(Ignore the grubby little hand prints everywhere)

High fashion I think you'll agree.

We were supposed to get snow today, but not even so much as a flake appeared, I was a bit disappointed as I was planning on building snow men with the wee man (or no-men as he call them!). We had a little snow yesterday but it was coming down horizontal so we couldn't get outside to enjoy it. Speaking of snow I just remembered about these pic's, they're from 'the big freeze' two years ago. Not content with just building a snowman, the Engineer in me wanted to build an igloo. It was a design and build job, in that I designed the construction method it and built it (well most of it). It was -11 degrees while building this and I was nearly 4 months pregnant, needless to say it took me a few days to get over it!

a work in progress


  1. Hi there-what an awesome igloo, it sure beats a snowman!! Regarding sizing issues I find that it's easier to shop for jeans instore as the sizing of them really varies from brand to brand. I also agree that Next and I've also noticed M&S sizes are the largest on the High Street and H&M are frustratingly all over the place!

    1. Yes I think I'll be hitting the shops in future for jeans, Next is so bad but it's great for a little confidence boost!

  2. Hi there. My daughter and her pal also built an igloo the year of the Big Snow. The pal's dad helped them and it was incredibly impressive when finished. Totally agree regarding sizing in shops, which is why I'm always a little cautious about buying online. To be honest, I also love the whole shopping experience, the wandering around, touching, feeling, seeing the clothes and of course the obligatory latte :)

    1. It beat's a snowman anyday Helen! I usually try to stay away from shops as I tend to spend a lot more and do more impulse buying that way but I think I'm slowly being drawn back.

  3. This website tells you what size you would be in different stores dependent on your measurements.

  4. Thanks Kirsty, will check that out I think I may have been on that before and still kind of though the sizes didn't match up, but must take another look.

  5. It was baltic and you went out in a blazer - you mad woman. I've just been out with the boys and I refused to go until I had my fleece lined tights on under my jeans and my furry trapper hat and three layers and ski gloves. Not trendy but warm! Anyway, mom duties done and having a few minutes to go through my blogs now! I was reading through your appraisal of the sizes and then started to think - I don't shop at half of the shops you mentioned - where do I shop?? However, I think I am usually a size 10 across the board. In skinny jeans - I sometimes go up to a 12 if they are very very skinny fit because I don't like looking and feelling like a bandaged sausage. There are some shops I have never bought from but would like to like Cos and Massimo Dutti but don't really know what their sizing is like - will have to bite the bullet to put my mind to rest and give me more shopping options. As for the igloo - brill. Come and build one for my boys will you?

    1. Ah Sue I may have thrown on an old ski jacket too but it wasn't very blog photo worthy! Have been meaning to try out those shops too actually, I'm limited in local shops as I live in the country and while I work in Belfast I dont get a lot of opportunities to shop in it. Do let us know if purchase there!
      I'll put u on the waiting list for an igloo shall
      I, I'm waiting for the patent to come through for my snowbrick*
      *might be a lie

  6. WELL impressed with that igloo! Well done you! Also, loved the sizing advice. Great to have on hand. And loving your trapper hat. You and Susan really suit them! Avrilx

    1. Aw thanks Avril I'm very proud of it lol!! The hat is amazingly warm I have hardly had it off since. Hope your enjoying the snow in the big smoke.

  7. OMG, I LOVE the igloo! The name of my business is Hot Igloo, so now I really, really want a REAL igloo in the garden - just don't think we have enough snow!

    I totally share your frustration with sizing: I do most of my shopping online, and lately I've been ordering a lot of stuff in two different sizes, and then sending one back, just to save me the hassle of ordering one, then having to return it and order another one. (This is one of the reasons I've been shopping a lot from H&M lately - their sizing really is crazy, but you don't have to pay unless you decide to keep the item, so you can order a couple of different sizes and only pay for the one that fits!) It's so annoying - I used to be able to pretty reliably know what my size would be in most places, but although my measurements haven't changed, I now don't have a clue a lot of the time!

    1. You'll have to get wishing for more Amber, I'll even let you use my snow brick method.

      Yeah it's really annoying as I don't have a lot of time to actually go shopping so end up in the post office far more than I would like to be.

  8. I liked your blog post until I saw the fur hat.


Thanks for your comments it's always nice to hear your thoughts.