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Have clothes sizes changed over the years?

#1
Have been sorting through all the clothes that no longer fit me and have made quite a mountain on my bedroom floor.

Got out boxes of clothes from the loft the majority of which are 17 years old (had them on my honey moon!) and some are 19 years old. When I looked at them (all sizes 14 from various stores, M&S, Next etc) they looked really tiny and I couldn't believe that I used to fit in them. So I got my daughter (she is the perfect 12) to try them on. They all fitted her perfectly, dresses, skirts etc even some bodies (remember them!).

I measured them all against her current size 12s and they are the same size.

When I used to wear these 14s I always felt overweight because of their size - now it seems because of the changes in womens sizes over the years, they have moved the goal posts and the old 14s are now the 12s.

I got a bit giddy, thinking that one day I will get back into them and will have a lovely figure like my daughter (although she hasn't got the stretch marks and flabby skin!)
 
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#2
They probably have changed. The average size for a woman in the UK now is a 16 (it was a 14 before). I think they change the sizes to make us feel better.

Anyway, hopefully you will fit back in those 14's or should I say 12's one day- good luck x
 

Lily

Gold Member
#3
I'm glad it's not just me who thinks so. I can fit into a size 18 even at 14 stones - and I remember quite clearly getting to 13 stones years ago (on the way up in weight rather than down :() and having to go for a size 20. Like you, I suspect that a current size 14 would've been more like a size 16 fifteen years ago.

Still, that would explain why being a size 6 is much more common than it was years ago - LOL, size 6... In my dreams... :D

I'd be perfectly happy to be an all-over size 14 now though, even if that would've been a size 16 in 'old money'...
 

Jaycey

Post-Menopausal Maniac!
#4
The problem is that standard clothes sizes haven't changed since the 1950s (when everyone seemed to have a teeny-weeny waist and matching bust and hip measurements). Because of this, different manufacturers have decided to adjust changing measurements themselves, which is why you will find yourself fitting into one size in one shop and a different size in another (or even a size and a half in Wallis, which has always been my experience!). It's even more complicated, now that so many clothes are made abroad.

There's only one answer - try it on! (Or make it yourself!)

People are growing bigger and bigger in this country, due to improved nutrition since the war, also hormones in meat (which we can't help eating if we eat meat - look at the huge gangly schoolkids you see now, they weren't like that when I was at school!). So a size 16 probably is the most common size for women now. (And Dawn French says that 47% of women in the UK are size 18 or over - which is why she's called her clothes shop 1847.)
 
#5
Nothing more likely to depress you than trying on clothes in different shops and having a huge variation in sizes to contend with. I know logic says it doesn't matter what the size is as long as it fits well and looks nice but it bugs the hell outta ME! :-(
 

Lostris

Serena's title didn't fit
#6
Hiya

They may have changed but what could've happend too is that pants these days are all stretch. They seem a smaller size but when you put them on they stretch out and fit just fine. Here most pants are skinny jeans too which are impossible to get on if you have big calves but you can get into any size if you have slim calves. (I could get into size 8-12 but 8 didn't fit at the top, neither did 10 so I bought it in 12 (was pink, I had to have it!!)) They were fine on my legs though.

Eh, hope that makes sense? :')

I do sometimes have to put on size 14 clothes which really bugs me however silly that seems. Usually coz it's a bit too tight around my tum... bah! I always refuse to buy size 14s now... no matter how nice they are hahaha!!!!!!!

xxx
 
#7
I think there definately is a lot of vanity sizing going on in shops nowadays, more shops making a size 12, 14, 16 etc bigger to make us feel slightly better about the self! My mum is a size 12 now and was a size 12 when she was in her 20's but all the size 12s from years ago are far too tight for her! So in today's sizes she was probably a size 10 years ago. I know this because we were having a talk about what size I want to be and she thought 10 was too small until I pointed out that she was the equivalent of a 10 at my age!
 

eyeontheprize

can see the end in sight!
#8
it really winds me up! they should have one standard sizing, it would make life hell of a lot easier for us.

Jaycey - i LOVE dawn french.
 
#9
They certainly have changed over the years. From my teens to thirties I weighed 8 stone and was size 12....I now weigh 9st 7lbs and size 10. :confused:
 

Jaycey

Post-Menopausal Maniac!
#10
it really winds me up! they should have one standard sizing, it would make life hell of a lot easier for us.

Jaycey - i LOVE dawn french.
'They' are always talking about standardising sizes, but 'they' never get round to it!

(I love her too - and my mum says she has the most beautiful face on TV. :queen:)
 
#11
Thanks for the replies on this.

Just to add further. Over the past few years I used to trawl the success stories in magazines and on the internet etc., for women the same height as me who had lost weight. It used to niggle me that all the women who had got down to 10 stone were a size 12, but when I was 10 stone (17 years ago) I was always a size 14!

Off now to laugh at my daughter dancing all over the bedroom trying to button up one of my 17 year old bodies for the first time - ah what we used to go through for the sake of fashion!
 
#12
Thanks for the replies on this.

Just to add further. Over the past few years I used to trawl the success stories in magazines and on the internet etc., for women the same height as me who had lost weight. It used to niggle me that all the women who had got down to 10 stone were a size 12, but when I was 10 stone (17 years ago) I was always a size 14!

Off now to laugh at my daughter dancing all over the bedroom trying to button up one of my 17 year old bodies for the first time - ah what we used to go through for the sake of fashion!
lol at the bodies, because I saw them for sale in Dotty p's this week!!! so your back in fashion;) heehee
 

Katycakes

Stubborn tortoise
#13
Whoa... I was 9st 7lbs for years and yet always a 14. But last week I tried on a 14 in Laura Ashley & couldn't work out what was wrong with the top of it... realised it was too big!!! (Sadly the bottom half was not!!!) SOOOOO... that will be why. And if that's so, then my well-worn mantra, 'I'll never be less than a 14' may not be true after all. One day... maybe... I could be a 12! YAYYYYYYY!!!!!!

xxx
 

Jaycey

Post-Menopausal Maniac!
#14
Whoa... I was 9st 7lbs for years and yet always a 14. But last week I tried on a 14 in Laura Ashley & couldn't work out what was wrong with the top of it... realised it was too big!!! (Sadly the bottom half was not!!!) SOOOOO... that will be why. And if that's so, then my well-worn mantra, 'I'll never be less than a 14' may not be true after all. One day... maybe... I could be a 12! YAYYYYYYY!!!!!!

xxx
It's so close you could taste it, isn't it? Yet I've never been a 12 in my life, but here I am actually discussing the prospect! (Never on any other diet have I been able to do that.)

Perhaps we ought to do a 'Gok' with our clothes - have you seen his latest show? He hangs contents of people's wardrobes on huge washing lines, and then walks along going "does it fit?" to every item. The person has one second to say yes or no, if no it gets binned! (To be fair, this is for people with huge amounts of clothes they never wear, but it could equally apply to us too - it's one way of blowing away the wardrobe cobwebs!) :D
 
#15
lol at the bodies, because I saw them for sale in Dotty p's this week!!! so your back in fashion;) heehee
ha, ha, not quite yet - hopefully by mid October; but they will probably have gone out of style again by then.

I am determined to wear all my old clothes at least once though when they finally fit me - even if it's behind closed doors - my daughter would disown me if she saw me in them outside!
 
#16
I could cry when i think of the lovely clothes i have binned over the years that have come back in fashion....apart from bodies!! How weird, i haven't thought of them for years till i read Julie W's post. Bloody things, used to get myself in a right pickle trying to do it back up again after having been to the toilet and had a few sherbets lol!
 


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