Size XL.....what size should I cut my sewing pattern?

I have a new pattern for a tunic I am making for a pastor’s wife whom I’ve never met. I was told by his assistant she is an XL. The pattern gives cut size options 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20.

So what IS an XL??? I need to cut the correct size to fit her.:think:

[INDENT]That’s a hard question to answer. You really have to go by bust size in inches. Some patterns run large like Simplicity. and others run small like Butterwick and Mc Calls. I would suggest you try the new line in Vogue called Todays Fit.(wait for a sale at Joannes). Otherwise I think I would go with the size 20 ; you can always take in the side seams if you need to. Good luck. Ellie

Thanks! If someone who has access to an XL body (get your mind out of the gutter :noway:) can give me some measurements, I’d appreciate it.

I tried measuring by my own size and it seems as if I’M a 16, but I KNOW that’s not right, as evidenced by the fact that I can still fit into my size 10s!!! :roll:

I’m large up top, about a 38 1/2 (I’m on a diet!), and the pattern says 38 bust is size 16! Waist and hips measurements about the same as the size 16 too - somewhere between a 14 & 16 acc. to the pattern.

Sooooooooo…any brave souls out there want to share their measurements??? Maybe we can rename this the diet thread and use our current measurements to
My measurements…keep in mind this is fully clothed in the very BULKY fabric one tends to wear in the hottest part of summer in 100 degree heat and 85% humidity!!!

Bust: 39!!! Yikes!
Waist: 33 1/2
Hips: 43 1/2

[my sister-in-law consoles me by telling me a 10" diff. between hips and waist is a great look, a Marylin Monroe type of body…OK, I’ll buy that…now pass me the chocolates so I can look a little more Monroe-ish! :teehee:

Sewing patterns are much different than clothing sizes. I am about 4 sizes bigger in patterns than in clothes. I think XL can mean so many things I’m not sure how you’d decide what size for someone you don’t know.

XL is a pretty meaningless term. I can wear an XL or a 2X depending on the clothing brand. For number sizes, I am either an 18 or a 20. Sometimes a 22, if the manufacturers are really cruel.:teehee: My bust size is 48".

The pattern envelope should tell you the finished measurement of the garment. That will tell you how close to the body it’s fitted (compared to the bust size listed) and that could give you an idea of whether you want to go up or down a size.

I would probably make an 18.

I’d say at least an 18. I’m a 2X, and I think I make a pattern size 24 or so… You’d be better off to get a bust measurement. Then you’d be sure you’re right.

Thank you all!!!

I didn’t realize that patterns we seem to need larger #s in patterns than our clothing size. I did see the finished garment measurements on the pattern and placed the measuring tape around me in those measurements and noticed they were (even the largest, size 20) FAR too small I’m sure.

I guess knitters just love a challenge…here I am going to make a tunic for a woman I’ve never met, who’s size as told me is ambiguous at best compared to the pattern sizes and who’s only picture available to me is a headshot!:lol:…LOL!

Luckily, what I am making is a tunic, which is SUPPOSED to be extra roomy, so I run less risk of offending her by sending too big a garment. I guess I’ll run to the fabric store and get the next size up patterns tomorrow for her. Meanwhile, I’m going to post this (for me size 16!!! pattern on the fridge to remind myself I REALLY need a diet!)

Vogue patterns are 3.99 at JoAnns now. I bought one today.


Of the sizes you indicate the 20 would be the choice but I agree with another poster that XL can depend on many elements and indeed I’ve found certain XL garments made in specific asian countries a small medium here. A 20 may also not be big enough and that is an issue. Unless the tunic is an absolute surprise gift, I would cut out the pattern first in spare cloth or even properly seamstress paper (don’t know the word) and fit this on here and see if it suits. Just ordinary cheap cotton would be fine for this fitting purpose. Is this a possibility or is it a surprise??

Ok…this page has a useful sizing chart but each pattern company has their own chart. Usually the patterns have them on the back of the pattern pack:

Tunics, because they generally go ‘over’ are supposed to be a little loose rather than form fitting as such I think.

Susan, thanks, and yes, it is a total surprise. However, since she is in a wheelchair I think I am going to assume the larger size of XL due to lack of mobility.

The fact it’s a tunic will help!

Thanks again everyone!!!
Have a very blessed and thoroughly happy weekend!