A lot of you ask why Felix & Kitty clothing doesn’t use the standard fashion sizing system. You come in thinking that you’re a size “Large” and find that you’re an “Extra-Small,” and you probably think we’re employing vanity sizing.
The fact is that the fashion industry’s so-called “standard sizing” is 1) not remotely standard and 2) not even sizing, at least until quite recently.
Catalogues from just decades ago say things like “This item available in size 12, 14, and 16 years” (emphasis added), meaning they were meant to represent average ages. Adult items were usually sized by actual body measurements (“fits up to a size 42 inch bust” and so forth).
Even today, no two clothing companies have a standardized agreement about what “size 18” or “Size Medium” actually means. Kitty has worn everything from a “size 8” to a “size 28” on the same day depending on the item and where it came from. Imagine if sneaker sizes ran like this: “I have size 5 feet in Nike and size 14 feet in Adidas” — you’d think it was batty! But then nobody can agree on how medium a potato or a button really is, so how do we decide how medium a human being might be?
So here’s a proposal for a sane and sensible sizing system, which is the one Kitty has used from the first day she started designing clothes. Medium is statistical medium, something close to the actual average size for a woman (or man or swamp monster or whatever) in your intended demographic.
That means that if you are a North American woman, you are 5 feet 3 ¾ inches (1.62m) tall and have a waist measurement of about 38 ¼ inches (98cm). If you read stats that tell you smaller numbers, you should know that popular clothing and pattern companies use numbers that haven’t been fully updated since the 1960s. People have changed since then, and whether that’s good or bad or healthy or not is not the point here. It just is.
This, in short, is our “size medium.” Kitty takes this and grades up or down from here, adding wearing ease (room so you can breathe and move in your clothes) and design ease (extra material that’s added for the look of a particular design). If you’re a bit smaller than this, you’re a small. If you’re a bit bigger, you’re a large. And so forth.
Yes, things get more complicated when trying to make each size available in different shapes for people who have a DDD cup or arms like a basketball player or no bum, but at least the sizing is simple and consistent.
Kittens, take this from your old Aunt Kitty – 85% of you can’t actually be above average. That means if 85% of people are bigger than a “medium,” it’s time to redefine “medium.” Now go forth and spread the good word. Demand that corporations start using sizes that are based on reality and are at least somewhat consistent with each other. Or if you prefer, continue to enjoy size roulette every time you shop for clothes and denounce Kitty as a dangerous radical; no judgments here.
Either way, remember that what fits you best looks best, whether the tag says “XXS” or “BX9!4” or “Gigantosaurus.”