Are You Confused by the Way Suppliers Size Their Clothes? This Will Explain Everything.

baby clothes kids clothing swimwear for toddlers

Do you go by age?

It's always a problem knowing what size to order when buying clothes for your kids. Sizes are normally quoted in terms of age, and as everyone knows, children develop at different rates, so one 18-month child can be a toddler whereas another may still be crawling.

What's the difference between months and years?

So how do you know what is right for your child? Generally, this can be a matter of trial and error but as a guide:

  • Baby clothes are made to fit the upper range, so 6M - 12M would be up to 12 months old
  • The suffix T stands for toddler (although I have seen sizes go up to 12T), so 2T is a 2-year-old toddler going on for 3 (note this is different from the first rule).
  • The difference between 24M and 2T is largely one of style. Clothes measured in months are usually for babies who still require nappies, and therefore clothes need space for these. Clothes measured in years tend to be more grown up in style.
  • You may also see sizes as numbers like 70, 80, 90.  This refers to height in cm, which roughly correlates to 6M, 9M, and 12M.  See the chart below for more.

What about weight?

Just recently I found some items of clothing (it was swimwear for kids to be precise) which was measured in weight! When you think about it, the weight of a child can have a significant bearing on the size of the clothes he or she needs.

To try and correlate weight with age, I did a bit of research and found several sources from which I developed this chart.

Chart showing sizes of clothes related to weight

This is of course based upon averages, so if your baby or toddler is higher or lower than these heights and weights, don't be alarmed. It's only for guidance for buying clothes if you don't know the weight (which as a parent is highly unlikely).

However, this chart is interesting in that it shows how weight increases rapidly in the first few months (a baby typically doubles in weight after 5 months) and then slows down. It also shows that the difference between girls and boys reduces as they get older. 

Does it matter what country you are from?

Yes, it does. Many products sold online are made in China, where children are typically smaller. This applies to adult clothes too, although they do try to account for this when tailoring clothes to a particular market. But as baby clothes are sized with the upper end in mind, it shouldn't really matter for clothing measured in months or years. 

Look at the features of each product on the Baby Knows Best store. If it says 'fits true to size, take your normal size', it means the difference has been accounted for.


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