For those of you who may find it a bit confusing moving from the ready made clothes world of the mall to the do-it-yourself world of the sewing table, let me give you some advice about the sizing process.
Accurately measure yourself. You cannot go on size on a pattern.
Here's what I mean:
A size 12 in the stores would be a size 18 (roughly) on a Simplicity pattern. The others, like store clothing, are close to the same parameters. Don't be dismayed. Clothing in stores have changed as the human body has changed with better nutrition and healthcare from previous decades. Patterns are standardized on whenever the company started, probably close to a century old. But if you plan to sew for yourself, you should know the difference. Men's patterns (if you can find them) are usually based on waist size though their S-XL tends to be more generous than their female counterparts.
So here it is:
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