How to measure your hips?

Part 1: Getting an Accurate Hip Measurement


To accurately measure your hips, follow these steps:

  1. Find a full-length body mirror: Using a mirror will help you ensure that the tape is not twisted or uneven. Stand in front of the mirror to get a clear view of your hip area.

  2. Take off your clothes: To get the most accurate measurement, remove your outer garments, such as pants and shirts. Wearing thick or bulky clothing can alter the measurement, so it's best to be as bare as possible. However, if you always wear the same type of bulky clothes and you're only measuring to track weight loss progress, you can leave them on. Keep in mind that for pattern-making or selecting the right clothing size, it's important to be as accurate as possible.

  3. Place your feet together: Position your feet close together, ensuring they are touching each other. Having your feet apart can create a measurement that is larger than your actual hip area. For accurate results, it's best to have your feet no wider than your shoulders, but ideally, they should be together.

  4. Know the difference between your waist and hips: Understanding the distinction between your natural waist and hips is essential. Your natural waist is the narrowest part of your torso, where your body curves inward. On the other hand, your hips are located below the waist and are usually wider. When measuring your hips, you should include both your buttocks and the widest part of your hips.

  5. Find the widest point: Your hip measurements should be taken at the widest part of your hips. This area represents the broadest point on your lower body and is crucial for obtaining accurate measurements. Once you have your tape measure in position, you may need to adjust it up or down slightly to identify the widest spot accurately. It's important to remember that everyone's body is unique, so you may need to make a few adjustments to ensure you're measuring the widest area correctly.

Part 2: Using the Cloth Tape

To measure your hips using a cloth tape, follow these steps:

  1. Hold the tape on one hip: Begin by holding one end of the cloth tape against one hip. It doesn't matter which side you start with. You can also pull it slightly towards the middle if that feels more comfortable for you. Make sure to hold onto the end firmly as you bring the other end around your body.

  2. Use a cloth tape measure: Opt for a soft and flexible cloth tape measure, commonly found in sewing kits and craft stores. These tapes are designed specifically for measuring the body. Most cloth measuring tapes go up to 60 inches or so, providing ample length for measuring various body parts accurately. You can also find them in big box stores and drug stores, usually located in the sewing section.

  3. Avoid metal measuring tapes: It's important to note that metal measuring tapes, typically used for DIY projects, are not suitable for measuring the body. They lack the necessary flexibility, which can lead to inaccurate measurements. Stick with a cloth tape measure to ensure precise and reliable results.

  4. Wrap it around the back: With one end secured on your hip, wrap the cloth tape measure around your backside, ensuring it remains parallel to the floor. Be careful not to twist the tape as you bring it around to the other end, measuring the widest part of your hips. Make sure the tape measure encompasses your rear end as well. If you find it challenging to wrap the tape around your back, you can start by holding both ends and step over the tape so that it rests on your backside. This technique can make it easier to wrap the tape measure accurately.

  5. Check in the mirror: Once you have wrapped the tape around your hips, check your reflection in the mirror to ensure it is positioned correctly. The tape should be parallel to the floor all the way around, without any twists or inconsistencies. Take a moment to examine the measurement from various angles, adjusting it if needed to achieve an accurate reading.

  6. Make it snug: When measuring your hips, the tape should be snug but not excessively tight. It should fit comfortably around your body, allowing you to slide one finger underneath it. A tape that is too tight can constrict your hips, leading to an inaccurate measurement.

  7. Read the measurement: Look down or use the mirror to read the number where the end of the tape aligns. This number represents your hip measurement. Ensure that you are reading it correctly to avoid any errors. Take note of the measurement for future reference.

  8. Write down your hip measurement: After determining your hip measurement, it is essential to record it for future use. Additionally, if you are taking measurements for sewing purposes, such as making clothing, you will need other measurements, including your bust, waist, thighs, and inseam, depending on the specific garment you are creating. Having all these measurements readily available will make the sewing process smoother and more accurate.

Part 3: Adding a Few Inches for Clothing

When making clothing, it's important to consider adding a few inches to your measurements for a comfortable fit:

  1. Understand the purpose: Adding inches to your measurements serves two main purposes. Firstly, it allows for ease of movement, ensuring that the garment isn't too tight or restrictive. Secondly, adding inches can accommodate specific design preferences, such as a flowing or voluminous silhouette.

  2. Determine the amount to add: Many sewing patterns provide guidelines for how much ease to include in your measurements. However, if you're creating a custom garment or modifying an existing pattern, you can decide how much to add based on your personal preferences. Typically, adding 2 to 4 inches (5.1 to 10 cm) to your hip measurement should provide a comfortable fit for most clothing styles.

  3. Consider fabric stretch: The amount of stretch in your fabric can also impact the ease you need to add. Stretchy fabrics like knits can often be worn with less added ease, as they naturally conform to the body. Stiffer fabrics may require more ease for comfortable movement.

  4. Adjust for body shape: If you have a curvier figure or prefer more room in certain areas, you may want to add additional inches to your measurements to ensure a better fit. This can help prevent the garment from feeling too tight or restrictive when worn.

By following these guidelines and accurately measuring your hips, you can confidently create clothing that fits your body shape and personal style. Remember to consider the specific requirements of each sewing project and adjust your measurements accordingly. Happy sewing!

See also:

When choosing what sizes of clothing, hip measurement is necessary?

When choosing different clothing sizes, measuring the hips is necessary. Here are a few examples of when hip measurement is essential:

  1. Skirts and pants: Measuring the hips is crucial when selecting the size of skirts, pants, jeans, or other bottoms. Hip measurement is key to ensuring a proper fit around the hip and buttock area. Without considering hip measurement, there is a risk that the skirt or pants will be too tight in that area or not fit properly.

  2. Dresses and blouses: Hip measurement is also important when choosing the size of dresses and blouses. Although it may seem that the hips are not relevant, a well-fitted dress or blouse takes into account body proportions, including the hip area. Hip measurement allows for selecting the right size that will better contour to the figure.

  3. Swimwear: Hip measurement is extremely important when selecting swimwear sizes. Proper fit around the hips is crucial for comfort and providing adequate support while wearing swimwear.

  4. Cycling shorts: In the case of specialized cycling shorts that have contoured padding and fit around the seating area, hip measurement is necessary to choose the right size. This ensures comfort and optimal fit during cycling.

It is important to note that different clothing brands and countries may have variations in size labeling. Therefore, it is always advisable to check the specific measurements in the size charts provided by each brand to select the most appropriate size for your hips and overall silhouette.


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