What are Extended Sizes?

All Sizes Welcomed

If you are around 5'5", wear a size 6, and a size 7 shoe then you may have never come across extended sizes within a store or catalog. I use these numbers because they fall pretty much in the middle of what is considered average or standard sizes in many stores. If you happen to be petite, tall, or wear a size 12+ (size 28+ for plus size stores), or size 12+ shoe then you may fall into the extended size category. 

In a nutshell, an extended size is any size or size range that falls outside of a retailer's core size offering. Many stores have made the good judgment call to limit their use of the term “extended sizes” and just have sections devoted to petite sizes, tall sizes, and plus sizes. However, if a store doesn't necessarily want to have a plus size department but chooses to extend its size offerings beyond a size 10 then they call the size range from 12 to 18, extended sizes. This happens in reverse in some stores to accommodate those who are very thin where extended sizes may be for those who wear sizes between 000 to 4 as is the case with the store, Chico’s.

What is considered an extended size depends on the retailer and what they choose as their standard size offering. It will differ from market to market. Using the Chico’s example in some cases, a size 4 is considered an extended size, where at Macy's it is a standard size. So do not become offended if your dress size is marked as an extended size at a particular retailer. They are not doing anything wrong; it is just based off how their size chart is designed for their core offerings. Don't take it personal, just look for that cute dress in your size and rock the heck out of it! 

Image Credit: Screenshot of Chico's extended size notice for information purposes/fair use.

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