Measuring Guide for Flower Girls & Communion
How to Measure your Child
When measuring, it is best to use a soft tape measure. If you only have a retractable measure, use a bit of string and measure this against the straight rule.
Communion dress measurements are not standard across all designers and each has their own measurements that their dresses are designed to. We would therefore never recommend to make a best guess and to check the sizing chart before ordering.
Generally speaking, First Communion dresses are designed to be fairly tight fitting. Measurements should be taken close to the skin, but not so tight that they cannot breathe! The child needs to be comfortable on their special day, so taking measurements that are too tight will probably result in the size being too small. Also please note below our advice on buying in advance.
The images below show where measurements should be taken. Please refer to the information below for more information and guidelines on getting the best fit.
To determine the correct size dress, you should first measure the length of your child, from the nape of the neck to where the hem will finish. To do this, measure the little one from the back, from the nape (bottom) of the neck all the way down.
First Communion dresses are typically available in two lengths, either full or tea (also termed ‘ballerina’). Full length should come to just above the ground and tea/ballerina length should come to around mid calf to ankle, depending on the style.
(a) Full Length
Measure from nape of neck to just above the ground.
(b) Tea Length
Measure from nape of neck to ankle. Depending on the dress style, some designs may finish higher up the leg.
Once you have determined the correct dress length from the designer’s sizing chart, you should then move on to the chest and waist measurements.
Measure just under the arms, all the way round, around the fullest part. As our designer’s sizing charts are actual garment measurements, for your daughter to be comfortable, you should allow 2-4cm extra for room.
Measure all the way around the waist. As our designer’s sizing charts are actual garment measurements, for your daughter to be comfortable, you should allow 2-4cm extra for room. Most designs tend to be fitted and have a smaller waist measurement than chest.
Points to Note
For chest and waist measurements, please bear in mind that some of our designers have a seem allowance for final fitting, so the dress can be taken in or out by a tailor. Please refer to the specific designer’s sizing chart on our Sizing Chart Page to check whether or not a seam allowance is included in your chosen design as this could mean that a standard size dress that would otherwise be too big or small may still be suitable for the child, with final fitting adjustments.
If you are intending on having an underskirt beneath the dress, depending on the fullness of the underskirt, it can raise the dress length substantially and should be considered when selecting the best size according to length measurement.
Buying in Advance
As a general rule most children grow between 5-10cm in height per year and between 1 and 3cm around the chest and waist per year, so for example if you are buying six months in advance of the Communion date, you should allow for half of these measurements when ordering. Of course, it is tricky to know exactly how much a child will grow but these should give some general guidelines of the averages! If in doubt, it is always better to size up rather than down on measurements, particularly if the dress can be altered to a perfect fit just before the Communion date.