BBC online interview

More consideration seems to be being given to the problem of sizing in clothing; a subject of my own research that is close to my heart.

The BBC reported that H&M have announced they will be changing their sizing in the UK. I was asked by teh BBC to add some background to the story about the history of clothing sizing systems and how these have been implemented.

Read the article here:

BBC news H&M female clothes sizes bigger

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According to the article, H&M offered the follwoing as an example of what they plan to do, ‘…the previous measurements and fit of a size 12 would now be the measurements of a size 10’.  I am trying to get my head around that. So does that mean they will in effect re-label a size 12 as a size 10? Does that actually address the issue that has been brought to light?

One of the major changes in women’s size found by the 2002 national sizing survey Size UK was that of relative proportions. Women’s waists are much larger in proportion to their bust and hips than they were 50 years ago. The historically desirable female ‘hour-glass’ figure, achieved largely through the constriction of corsetry (latterly those ghastly panty girdles), is no longer a realistic shape for the average woman. So shouldn’t this be reflected by making waists larger rather than than just up-size all over?

If you want to read more about the social history of corsetry I recommend ‘Bound to Please, A History of the Victorian Corset‘, by Leigh Summers. Its easy to read and very informative.

Bloomsbury publishing link to Bound to Please

 

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On becoming a Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Framework Knitters

I was admitted to this company last month in an ancient ceremony at Goldsmith’s Hall in London. The Worshipful Company is one of the 108 Livery Companies of the City of London which evolved from the medieval trade Guilds which came about through the natural inclination of men in the same trades and occupations to join together for friendship, support and protection.

The website explains the history in full, but this quote explains some of this:

“The Worshipful Company of Framework Knitters had its origins in 1589 when William Lee of Calverton in Nottinghamshire is credited with the invention of a machine for knitting mechanically. It was incorporated by Oliver Cromwell, Lord Protector of the Commonwealth, on 13th June 1657 and was re-incorporated and its privileges extended by Letters Patent of His Majesty King Charles II on 19th August 1663 with the style, “The Master, Wardens, Assistants and Society of the Art or Mystery of Framework Knitters of the Cities of London and Westminster and the Kingdom of England and the Dominion of Wales”. Image

me outside the Goldsmith’s Hall

Waiting in the Goldsmith's Hall
Waiting in the Goldsmith’s Hall

 

See http://www.frameworkknitters.co.uk/ for more info