Learn More About Your Clothes: Clothing Terminology, Symbols on Tags, International Sizes

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In case you missed it: ever feel like clothing terminology is all gobbledygook?  What do all the technical terms, symbols and numbers mean? Learn a little more about the clothes you own, so you can put a name to your favorite style top, understand how to take care of your best silks, and more.

Clothing Symbol Tips

America, France, the UK, Japan and Italy all use different numbers to identify sizes, and there are three different shoe size charts across the globe.  We posted our own version of the International Size Conversion Chart – simplified.

Need the perfect word to describe your favorite top?  Maybe its a chemise, jewel neck top, surplice top, or tunic.  What’s a column skirt, or a bouffant gown?  Check out our huge glossary of different style tops, and different style bottoms.

Don’t be puzzled by the symbols on your clothing tag: we have a cool link to a guide to common household and drycleaning symbols.

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  • sarai

    Yes, the tag makes a joke around the stereotype of a “traditional mother”.  Anyone with half a grain of sense knows that stereotypes are not realistic, and yet can still find them humorous.  The PC police need to relax and get over it.

  • Jenn_theglamourgirl

    I thought it was hilarious! 
    I wish the tags were easier understand!  Thanks for posting the link.

  • sarahactv

    aww, i thought the tag was really cute!  assuming mostly women read this website, then i think the tag just says that the tag is indecipherable, and that someone wiser knows what to do.  therefore TBF is stepping in and explaining the symbols.

  • velouria73

    I know the tag is supposed to be funny, but does anyone else think it’s kind of offensive to say “Give it to your mom – it’s her job”? Your mom’s job is not to take care of someone else’s clothes. Yes, moms usually do laundry and ironing, but if you’re old enough to think that is funny, you’re probably old enough to do some ironing. I know I’m probably overreacting a little, but I don’t think it’s funny to reinforce old domestic stereotypes that many women are trying to rise above.

    Laundering instructions definitely can be confusing though, so I’m all for making them easier to understand.