- When buying a pattern for an upper-body garment (jacket, dress, shirt, blouse, or coat), choose the size that fits your shoulders and neckline
- When buying a lower-body pattern (pants or skirt), choose a size that fits your waist and upper hip. Shoulders/necklines and waists/upper hips on patterns are very difficult to alter, so it’s easiest to start off with the closest possible fit right from the pattern envelope.
- When you choose tops, use your chest measurement (above the bust, as high as possible under your arms, and over your shoulder blades—don’t worry if the tape isn’t perfectly horizontal at all points) and alter for the bust if there’s more than a 2-in. difference between your chest and bust measurements. It’s always much easier to make a pattern larger than smaller.
(source: Threads Magazine)