(Closed) What is the average sample dress size?

posted 5 years ago in Dress
Post # 2
1051 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

IveBeenDreaming:  I only went shopping in one store and the samples were all sizes 4 and 12. These dresses all ran pretty close to street size so I’m not sure how much help this will be. Keep in mind that even if the sample is too big or too small, they will be able to use clips to give you a better idea of how the dress will fit in your size.

Post # 3
2878 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

IveBeenDreaming: they kept putting me in bridal size 10, which is street size 6, but keep in mind that samples get stretched out. 

I ended up buying a bridal size 8 which needs to be taken in, since I’m not a street size 2. 

Post # 5
2271 posts
Buzzing bee


At the store I work at it’s anywhere from a bridal size 10-16, we try not to stock anything smaller because it really limits who can try things on. And yes bridal runs small usually you have to go up one or two sizes from you street pants size. However I have heard thats some high-end boutiques can be notorious for carrying small samples that’s why it is always good to call ahead and inquire about appointments, budget, and sample sizes. 

Post # 6
653 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

I didn’t try on too many dresses, but in my experience, there were mainly sizes centered around 10-14. I was super paranoid they would be too small.

I wouldn’t worry too much about the dresses being too big. I tried a dress at DB that was sample size 18 (I’m a busty street size 8) and it looked so great clipped, I almost bought it instantly. 

Post # 7
46 posts

I think all of the dresses I tried were 8-14.  most of the samples I tried on were a 12 – which was what I ended up purchasing, so many of the dresses fit me very well, a couple of size 8s (which were a bit of a squeeze), a few 10s that didn’t feel too small, and some 14’s that needed to be clipped.  I’m a street size 8-10, sometimes a 6

Post # 8
904 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

I’m a street size 12, and from how the sample dresses (didn’t) fit, I think they were mostly street-size 8 or so.  I had to be clipped into all of them because they wouldn’t fasten – EXCEPT the dress I ended up buying, which was a bridal size 14 but actually fit without any clips!

Post # 9
164 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

I only went to a few stores but most of the samples were sizes 10-14. I’m not sure how true to size they run because they were big on me. I usually wear a street size 4-6 and I ordered my dress in a size 8. Haven’t gotten to try the actual dress on yet though. 

Post # 10
338 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

I’m a street size 4, sometimes 6, and I bought a sample gown that’s a size 8 and fits near perfectly.  The store I went to was pretty high end, and the samples were mainly 10s, with a few 8s and 12s thrown in. 

Post # 11
3697 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

It depends on the store.  I went to a couple stores that most of the samples were 8-12’s.  The place I bought my dress from carried mostly 14’s and 16’s as samples.  She correctly understood that most women were an 8 or bigger, and said she’d rather clip it on than have someone not be able to get into it, because you’re much more likely to buy a dress you can actually see on you.  The sample for mine was a 16 – I ordered an 18 but could have worn the sample if I had to, which made me feel better about it.

Post # 12
2013 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

Most of the dresses I tried on were in the 8-14 range. My dress was a size 10, and I’m a street size 6. I didn’t need any alterations on my dress.

Post # 13
493 posts
Helper bee

It depends on the store’s typical clients too as they will try to be in the general size of the community.  I tried on dresses from 8-18!  (I am a street 2.)  One store I went to only had 8-10s, and they did not go much higher than that, which I thought would be really inconvenient for most people.  I also am not a fan of places that don’t allow you to take pictures or pressure you to buy on your first time in their store.

You should focus on a size that is healthy for you, not the one that the bridal shops tell you that you should be.  

Post # 14
519 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

At most of the places where I went, the samples were size 10 and fit me fine. I’m actually a street size 10 for bottoms. I think, though, it’s because I was trying on mostly ballgowns where there is more room for my hips, and my top is actually probably smaller than a street size 10. I ended up ordering a 12 based on my measurements and then had to have it taken in on the top. 

Post # 15
3758 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 2014

I think it depends on your location and how high end of a shop it is. The boutique I went in mostly had sizes 8-14. My dress was a size 12 (which is also my street size thanks to my hips). I only had to have it taken in under my arms. 

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