Market Specific Sizing

Our ethos is that one size will not fit all, and therefore no one sizing system will be suitable for all our clients.

We believe the most successful route to market acquisition for clothing brands is to research and target a specific customer base in order to guarantee their satisfaction and, by extension their repeat business.

We invest time and our knowledge of 15 years in industry to enable our clients to expand beyond standard grading rules and into a more profitable sizing system designed specifically for them and their target demographic.

We can do this for young start-ups by discussing your researched consumer profile (gender, age range, garment usage, and their preferences in style and vanity) as well as for already established brands by analysing data on your current customer base.

The main markets we currently consult on are listed on the right, however we are confident we can tackle further niche markets so feel free to book a consultation and challenge us to yours today.

Womenswear Grading

For ladieswear when designing a bespoke grading rule system the main aspects to take into account are the consumer profile (age range, garment usage and style preferences) and the place your brand sits in the current market.

Selecting and manipulating the size range is also particularly important for graders of womenswear as it can dramatically effect on the perception of the brand and therefore the amount of sales. For example selecting a size range that skews smaller or larger can be advantageous in different market sectors. Additionally the trend for vanity sizing amongst competing brands can be particularly profitable if executed within a bespoke grading system.

Menswear Grading

For menswear the sizes used are 34, 36, 38, 40, 42, 44… 60 or S, M, L… XXXL this will be determined by the type of garment. The identity of the customer and where the brand is placed in the market are contributing factors for deciding the measurements used in the base size pattern. The two measurements graders pay particular attention to are stature (ratio between chest and waist) and the height (short, regular or long).

Another feature of menswear grading is the research that indicates that men are less likely to try on garments before purchasing them. Bespoke grading means that you can design increments to maximise your exposure across the sizing spectrum and secondly you could closely align yourself to the sizes used by your competitors so that your consumer will be able to successfully select a size that fits and therefore reduce your amount of returns.

Childrenswear Grading

For childrenswear we recommend that age be used for sizing increments instead of height as market research suggests that height is confusing for consumers. Childrenswear can either be graded as single sizes or dual sizes, this will be determined by the type of garment and market sector. We will then consider which age group the range can be broken into, eg. babywear (0-2) kidswear (3-11) or teenwear (12-16). As you cross over into an older sector an additional base size pattern is recommended due to differences in growth between genders.

Bespoke grading is commonly used in childrenswear as it is more location targeted than other market types and garments will be sized differently in the UK compared to European or US standards.

We would also like to take this chance to reinforce the importance of adhering to each countries rules and regulations for components and fabrics when designing childrenswear. Further information on British garment manufacturing regulations can be obtained here.

Sportswear Grading

For sportswear the base size pattern will already contain enough allowances to allow ease of movement during the activity the garment is used for. It is the type of activity and garment type that will impact the design of the grading system. The core consumer of each of these garments are different, the fitted lyrca top is more likely to be consumed by a person concerned with high impact sports compared to a person who is new to sports who would be more likely to consume a regular t-shirt. Therefore you may consider sizing each of these slightly differently to meet the demands of each consumer.

We would also recommend using a single size system (eg. 8, 10, 12, 14, 16) not only because the fitting would be more comfortable but also as this would allow a customer to move down the range as physical fitness increases. This would enable the customer to see a more encouraging change and make them more likely to complete the purchase compared to a dual size system
(eg. S, M, L).

Plus Size Grading

The industry consider true plus size to be sizes above a UK size 18. One of the most important things we will consider for grading plus size is what type of body shape will the clients be as there is much greater variety in plus size bodies. There are also many opportunities for expansion in this market sector as different lines can target more niche body shapes such as plus size tall garments.

If you are planning to extend a previously established line above this threshold we would recommend creating an additional base size pattern in order to account for the different allowances needed in various parts of the garment. For example special attention needs to be paid to the measurements of the armhole, shoulder length, across back, bust waist and hips ratio.

If you are starting a new line devoted just to plus size clothing and need advice on standard grade rules for plus size we would recommend creating a base size pattern in sizes 18 or 22.

Maternity Grading

For maternity clothing the sizing is typically arranged as a normal UK size eg. 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16 and then sometimes broken down further by trimester or month of pregnancy. The base pattern is typically aimed at a woman in the second to third trimester as normal clothing can fit some women for the first trimester. Trousers are sized using a waist size eg. 26, 28, 30, 32 and remains the same waist size as the woman would wear pre-pregnancy but accounts for extra growth in the stomach and additional areas in the base size pattern.

Bespoke grading is specifically useful in this market as woman’s bodies can change in different parts during pregnancy, so targeting a specific niche could be particularly profitable if done successfully.