A - Chest
Measure with your bra on and place the tape measure around your bust line. Make sure that the tape is around the widest part of the back, and straight fullest part of your bust. Do not put the measuring tape under the bust line.
B - Under Bust
Measure your ribcage immediately under your bust, making sure the tape feels firm.
C - Waist
Measure your natural waistline at its smallest point, usually above the belly button. Do not suck-in your stomach. Your waist should be approx about 5-6 inches from bottom of bust.
D - Hips
Stand up straight again and with your feet together and flat on the floor. Measure your hips at the largest part (usually at the level of the hip bone). It's usually six or seven inches below your natural waist. Hip measurement is irrelevant for dresses with a full skirt.
Tips for Alterations
What is the best way to measure myself for fitting.
It is always best to have an alterations expert, seamstress or someone else take your measurements using a soft cloth measuring tape. It is not good to pull the measuring tape taut, instead make sure that it loose by at least one finger, this will ensure the best fit for you.
Most of the dresses can be altered down one size & let out one size. It depends on seam allowances. Most of the manufactures provide 1-2 cm of additional fabric in the side seam and at the waist to allow for minor alternations to be made easily. However, please note that transparent corset and sheer design on the top part of the dress has NO additional fabric in the seams to let out, so this kind of dress can only be altered down.
-Bust & waist are usually altered for best fit.
-It's very difficult to extend the length, unless there is extra fabric tacked down.