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chapter

31

Introduction to Childrenswear
Childrenswear Challenges . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .691 Color and Functional Clothing . . . . . . . . . . . .691 Representative Sizes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .691 Size Grouping . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .691 Observable Differences . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .691 SIZE CATEGORIES FOR CHILDRENSWEAR . . . . . . . . .692 Infants or Babies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .692 Toddlers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .692 Children . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .692 Boys and Girls (Preteen) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .692 Young Juniors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .692 Juniors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .692 SIZING METHODS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .692 Alternate Sizing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .693 SOURCES OF INSPIRATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .693 Children’s Fashion References . . . . . . . . . . . . .693

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Size Grouping Sizes for children’s clothing are grouped according to body circumference and proportion. Representative Sizes The discussion of the sizes and shapes of children in this text includes infants. children never are. 6. 12. 5. . 4. almost to the same degree that those with the 7 to 14 sizes overlap on the upper end with junior sizing. although prints. stimulating clothes. toddlers. with 6X for girls only). 4T) to children’s (3. young juniors. preteens. proportion. when physical shapes begin to diverge. and juniors. To successfully accomplish the many activities on which learning hinges. Comfort. and 14). 18. only sizes 3 to 6X and 7 to 14 (boys’ and girls’) are represented in the patternmaking illustrations. plaids. 9. 12. Size groupings reflect changes in the proportions of children as they pass from infant (3. However. Fibers and fabric types for childrenswear are not much different from those found in clothes for comparable uses among adults and teens. (Size 16 is used for larger boys’ pants. Although many differences can be observed in styling and color between boys’ and girls’ clothing from infant through sizes 6 and 6X. children. and function. 8. at the same time. through toddlers’ (2T. must be functional.) Observable Differences Body shapes from infants’ through children’s size ranges are indistinguishable between boys’ and girls’. is nowhere more important than in the creation of childrenswear. Color and Functional Clothing One of the most stimulating aspects of children’s clothes is the primary palette that remains the favorite of children every season. which reflects good fit. Overlap between toddlers’ and children’s sizes occurs as proportions and heights vary within the age range. 10. and into boys’ and girls’ sizes (7. The business of children is to learn. differences necessitated by form only become a reality at size 7.INTRODUCTION TO CHILDRENSWEAR 691 Childrenswear Challenges Creating childrenswear offers some new challenges to the designer and patternmaker. too. Fabric. and stripes are proportioned for the smaller body. boys’ and girls’. 3T. children require unencumbering and. While adults are sometimes willing to sacrifice comfort for aesthetics. and parents frequently demand material that requires only limited maintenance. or 24 months).

3T. this is an interim period when the figure matures at varying stages. a natural waistline appears. Major changes are taking place. 5. Garments within this upper size range do not always fit the figure well. In young men. Physical observations: Figures diverge when boys and girls reach age seven. with boys’ pants fitting better in a size 16. the figure is developed almost to maturity. Boys have slim hips. and the waistline. and Slim. and designers to decide which set of measurements best represents their consumers. Physical observations: Newborn to children beginning to crawl. Boys and Girls (Preteen) Sizes: 7 to 10. The measurement chart offered in this text is one of many such attempts to establish a good set of working measurements for the industry. and Huskys are labels for boys’ pants. Physical observations: There is a jump in growth and the figure is more defined. It is difficult for manufacturers. Sample size: 12 months or Medium. and from which to base the pattern grade. Outward thrust of tummy is a prominent feature. Head seems to sit on shoulder. as yet. The anatomical changes that take place in children between ages six and seven tend to interrupt the regular sequence of graded sizes. fashion is unisex. The measurement differences will be noticed in some of the graded areas of the chart. and bust and hips start to take shape in girls. A better fit may be found in the junior department. A measurement recording chart is placed at the back of the text for use in recording the measurements taken from the measurement chart or those taken from personal model measurements. Sample size: 10. Muscle is more defined and hips are slim. They are either sized 3 to 6X (X meaning larger than size 6) for both boys and girls or sized 4 to 6X for girls. 6 months. Young Juniors Sizes: 10 to 14. high. Boys and girls have similar shapes at this age. have defined curves. and 4 to 7 for boys. is not defined. Physical observations: There is rapid growth through this period. Regular. as yet. blending with the waistline. 12 months. Boys’ and girls’ sizes are indistinguishable. Large (L). but the legs grow longer. and except for color difference and dresses. and 4T (1T may also be considered in this size range). Boys and girls begin to diverge at age seven. The teenager is now ready to wear garments in the junior size range. For both boys and girls. Medium (M). boys 8 to 20 classified as elementary to junior high school (with chest measurements used for sizing). 7. Shoulders are rounded and have almost no width. 9. Another method for sizing this group is girls 7 to 14 classified as elementary to junior high school. Proportions differ greatly as the torso remains about the same length. Slim and Regular sizes are separate labels for girls. rounded breast. Baby fat is replaced with muscle tissue. Physical observations: Child is walking by this time. Children Sizes: Sizing for children within this group is mixed. Sample size: 9. This labeling indicates special fits for other figure types. with size 3 labeled for toddlers.692 Chapter 31 SIZE CATEGORIES FOR CHILDRENSWEAR Infants or Babies Sizes: 3 months. 3. Sizes may also be labeled as Small (S). and 13. SIZING METHODS Measurement charts for children’s sizes 3 to 6X and 7 to 14 are found in Chapter 32. 18 months. . neck is not developed. Juniors Sizes: 1. but the figure does not. and Extra Large (XL). They may use age or height and weight as the standard upon which to determine the sample size. The chart may be removed and reproduced for future use. blending into the waistline. Toddlers Sizes: 2T. patternmakers. 11. Sample size: 5. and 24 months. Sample size: 3T. Slimming and lengthening of the torso and limbs occur. and shapely hips. Physical observations: The young woman’s figure is developed to almost adult maturity with a defined waistline. The protrusion of the stomach is reduced. The torso is longer.

or rock categories and want to dress like them. and other sports. Children’s fashion magazines are a valuable source of fashion direction. high-style children’s magazine • Child. When possible. and in books. as follows: XXS ϭ size 2/3. and so on) Children’s Fashion References Fashion Magazines and Services Publications • Bimbi Di Elegantissima (twice a year). and Extra Large. zippers. includes all ages up to teens • Earnshaw’s Infants. They want to wear clothing displaying their favorite characters from TV (Sesame Street characters.com. Fairchild Publications. They want their garments to reflect those worn by an older sister or brother or by classmates. and folk costumes often provide themes for designer collections. and the grunge look (over-oversized). The smart designer also shops the market for inspiration. and in the movies. Mickey Mouse and others). XL ϭ size 12. published monthly by Fairchild. to name a few. in Italian. XXL ϭ size 14. Girls and Boyswear Review (monthly) • Kids’ Fashions (monthly). This infatuation creates fads in fashion. L ϭ size 10. cording. Large and oversized garments. covers children’s apparel. merchandising of childrenswear • Moda Bimbi (three times a year). braiding.” select “Babies and Children’s Clothing Designer. fashion magazine for youthwear • Children’s Clothing. the designer should go to Europe and other fashion centers for inspiration and fashion direction. A premium is paid to the creator of cartoon characters that are used on garments.” Boys and girls ages 7 to 14 are influenced by fashions of the junior market. in addition to knowing what the competition is doing. Britney Spears. the Simpsons. Younger children are influenced by what they see on TV. M ϭ size 8. Literature. Designers who want to be up to date with the latest fads should study children at school. 1983 Website • How to become a childrenswear clothing designer: www. a resource for upscale childrenswear from both domestic and foreign designers • Young Fashions (monthly). appliqués. Other sources of inspiration are: • Trims (lace. XS ϭ size 4/5. hockey. or Twilight themes. on TV. lacings. ruffle trims. underwear worn as outerwear. Large.stylecareer. rickrack. pants. Walt Disney movies. They idolize movie stars and music personalities from country. on the playground. forecasts style trends • Vogue Bambini (four times a year). Medium. Older children. and others) • Combinations of fabrics. • Closures of unusual design (buttons. shorts.INTRODUCTION TO CHILDRENSWEAR 693 Alternate Sizing Another method used for sizing garments uses letters rather than numbers. and licensing • Seventeen. while still interested in TV and movie characters.” . Velcro. S ϭ size 6/7. SOURCES OF INSPIRATION Designers of childrenswear gain inspiration from many diverse sources. A manufacturer must be licensed to use characters based on various television shows. bows. clasps. They have heroes—key players from football. including those provided by fashion-minded children. Selma Rosen. clipping services. such as the hip hop influence: bag pant. become more interested in fashions that are part of the “hip hop scene. in Italian. Dora the Explorer. Lei. frogs. Superman. baseball. colors. and tops are commonly labeled Small. ornate metal closures. in Italian • Children’s Business. in movies. and historical books follows. rap. Elle (both domestic and French editions). ties. and textures Clever usage of all that is available to the designer allows for endless creative ideas. A list of magazines. Under “Careers in Fashion. footwear. toys. historical references. and occasional childrenswear issues of Town and Country • Teens and Boys (monthly). basketball.

features sketches of childrenswear around the country References • Complete Book of Fashion Illustration (How to Draw Children) by Sharon Tate and Mona Edwards. published by B. published by Prentice Hall (1995) • Fashion Illustration for Designers by Kathryn Hagen. Elizabeth Ewing. the Advent of Fashion. published by Hobby House Press (1984) • Children’s Clothes 1939–1970. by Patrick John Ireland.patriciabrandtcompany. published by Prentice Hall (2003) • History of Children’s Costumes. Felger. T. by Donna H. published by John Wiley and Sons (1979) • Inside Fashion Design (chapter 8) by Mona Edwards. published by Blandford Press (1978) • The Way We Wore: Fashion Illustrations of Children’s Wear. by Alice Guppy.694 Chapter 31 • Drawing and Designing Children’s and Teenage Fashions. 1870–1970 by Linda Martin. Edited by Sharon Tate. published by Prentice Hall (2004) .com • The Middlemarck Clipping Service. published by Encore Editions (1978) Services • FirstVIEW Girls • FirstVIEW Boys • FirstVIEW Baby • D3—Junior Retail Report The Patricia Brandt Company Phone: (323) 650-1222 www. Batsford (1977) • Boys’ Fashions. 1885 to 1905.