Standard sizes take into account the combinations of body measurements of the general population specifically the horizontal torso, vertical torso and sleeves measurement. However, not all measurements are taken into consideration because of the differences in the drape and ease of the fabric.
If you're in the United States, Japan, UK and Ireland, you're probably looking for plus size dresses if you wanted sizes greater than size 20. In France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Scandinavia and Italy, this is not the case because their clothes sizes usually start at 32 for women's dresses.
Because of the diverse standards or measurements used for clothing sizes, even the International Organization for Standardization (or widely known as ISO) have various ISO standards that are related to clothes sizes such as:
- ISO 3635:1981 Size designation of clothes - definitions and body measurement procedure
- ISO 4416:1981 Size designation of clothes - women's and girls' underwear, nightwear, foundation garments and shirts
- ISO 5971:1981 Size designation of clothes - pantyhose
- ISO 8559:1989 Garment construction and anthropometric surveys - body dimensions
- ISO/TR 10652:1991 Standard sizing systems for clothes
Because of the differences in the clothing sizes, whenever you shop for clothes, try it on first as much as possible or see the manufacturer's catalogue as to how they determine the clothing sizes. Do you agree?