Height is perhaps the easiest measurement and the one you are most used to taking. With your child standing against a wall, in bare feet or socks, with their feet flat to the floor and the back of their heels against the skirting board or wall. Making sure they are looking straight ahead, rest a pencil on top of their head and make a light pencil mark on the wall. When they have stepped away from the wall, and whilst keeping the tape measure straight, measure the height from the pencil mark on the wall to the floor.
As with chest measurements, your child’s height can change significantly whilst they progress through school and so it’s always good idea to take it this measurement regularly. It’s also a handy measurement on which you can base many other school uniform purchases.If you are short on time, always focus on the height guidelines as these will help you buy the sizes that are more likely to fit regardless of your child’s age.
Generally, it is only boys’ shirts that are produced and sold by collar size. Depending on your child’s school uniform dress code you might be required to buy ‘formal’ shirts – for example, polo shirts are sold by chest size or age rather than collar size – and so always check the school’s requirements first.
To measure the collar, wrap the tape measure gently around the base of the neck. Whilst doing this, slide two fingers between the tape measure and the skin; this will allow some space for a more comfortable fit.
You can choose boys’ school shirts based on this measurement, however you should also check the chest measurement of the garment as well to be sure that the two measurements both fit. It’s better to have a properly fitted chest with a slightly looser collar than a well-fitted collar and a chest that’s too small.
Your child’s chest measurement will be needed for buying school shirts, blouses, polo shirts, jumpers, sweatshirts and blazers. Boys’ shirts are generally categorised by collar size, but is always useful to have the chest measurement to hand.
The chest and height measurements are very likely to change on a regular basis over your child’s time at school as they begin to hit puberty. Keeping track of these measurements can help you make sure you’re buying the right size shirt, blouse, jumper or blazer for them even if their other measurements haven’t changed much at all.
To take the chest measurement, measure around the fullest part of their chest. For younger children, place the tape measure a few inches below the armpit and measure there. For older children, particularly girls, the fullest part of their chest might be a little lower. Your child should be able to tell you which measurement is most comfortable to them. Be sure not to pull the tape measure too tight as this might lead to ordering a smaller size than is actually required.
You can take the measurement by finding the narrowest part of their torso/middle which is generally around a couple of inches above their hip bone. If your child has no natural narrowing to their torso, you can take the measurement from around halfway between the bottom of their rib cage and the top of their hip bone.
Make sure that pull the tape measure (or string) so that it is snug but not too tight against their waist, making sure that they’re not holding their breath! You won’t need to add any extra to the measurement to allow for comfort, good quality uniform is always designed with a little extra ‘wiggle room’ included!
Measuring for a skirt is generally easier, especially if you have an existing school skirt that they like the length of. Simply take the measurement down from your child’s natural waist to the hem of the skirt, ensuring the tape measure is in a straight line.
Note — You should also make sure to check your school’s uniform requirements and dress code for skirt length to make sure any items you purchase comply with the guidelines.
For the fitting of trousers, the measurement that you need to provide here is actually the inside leg measurement. It’s used to decide between short, regular or long length in trousers.
When taking the inside leg measurement, it is important that your child wears their school shoes and stands as they would normally. Stretch the tape measure from their crotch, down their inner leg to an inch or so above the ground, or where you would like the trousers to finish.
Make sure that the tape measure is in a straight line and not wrapping around the leg, and that it’s not stretched too tightly or the trousers may be too short and uncomfortable.