Tips And Tricks: Travel Size Retractable Tape Measures

These are so cool! I recently bought this one at The Container Store (the smaller blue one), and am so excited to use it!

Shopping for petite women often involves grabbing a hand full of items, dragging them to the fitting room, trying them all on, only to have none of them fit. Disappointing right? I’m betting this handy little device will help days like these.

I want to use it to measure hard to fit areas like pant rises, that always give me trouble. Usually, I hold up an item of clothing, estimate the fit by eye, and am usually disappointed in the dressing room. Instead, I want to whip out my little measuring tape, measure the pant rise, and know before hand if it’s going to end up past my belly button. No need to schlep piles on pants into the dressing room anymore! Only the ones that measure up will make the cut.

I can also see this coming in handy for things like waist, shoulder, and arm hole opening measurements, which are usually hard to estimate by eye on a garment.

These things are also fantastically cheap, with lots under $5. Other options include this keychain one from CB2this one on Amazon, and this one from Joann Fabrics.

Anyone use these to make shopping easier?


Join the Conversation


  1. says: Zoe the Short

    These are the bee's knees for thrifting, since not all stores let you try stuff on. Measure some garments that fit you well, keep those numbers in your purse, and snap up those bargains! :)
    (also works for shopping eBay auctions)

  2. says: PetiteAsianGirl

    These are a great idea. I don't even own a single measuring tape (have to use string and a ruler – it's sad).

    I also like the spruced up template…everything looks so much more clear! I also like your new petite ad units : )

  3. says: Alterations Needed

    Zoe the Short – Great idea to use them for thrifting. They would definitely make shopping easier.

    PAG – Get yourself a measuring tape girl! I can't believe you've been blogging this long without one!

    Thanks! The template is a constant tweaking process for me. Don't be surprised if it changes again soon. =)

  4. says: diaryofashopper

    I would like a little purse-sized tape measure- I will have to check those out at container store. :) There are times when I really wish I had one with me.

  5. says: Nancy

    I have a couple of retractable measuring tapes and I actually have one in my purse at all times because I can never judge how long, wide, high something is. Never actually thought to use it for clothing!

  6. says: Zoe the Short

    Oooh, and if you go to fabric stores you can get ones that attach to your keychain! A cardinal rule, though, is that you will lose them, so get several.

  7. says: PetiteXXS

    I've never thought of doing that! I usually just eyeball it too… I wonder if I'll be too embarrassed to whip out a tape measure around other people though :)

  8. says: Alterations Needed

    PetiteXXS – If anyone asks, just say you're a personal shopper…isn't that kinda what fashion blogging is anyways? =)

  9. says: Ms. Shopportunity

    I have one of these already, but I never once thought to take it shopping. Great idea!! Will have to do this!

  10. says: HM63

    I've had a mini measuring tape in my purse for years! It always comes in handy. I've measured all manner of things. I even measured a kids head once because his mom didn't know what size bike helment to buy. :)

  11. says: Twenty Two Flamboyant Street

    Great post. I keep one just like those in my bag with my body measurements at all times. Amazing how much time it saves when shopping in a hurry.

  12. says: Anonymous

    Did you know that there are tape measures that have a little plastic tab on the end of the tape so you can easily wrap it around something? Basically it allows you to loop the measuring tape around your chest thigh, etc. Just press the button and it tightens, allowing you to get an accurate reading w/o strugging to hold up the tape.

  13. says: Alterations Needed

    Anonymous – I've never seen or heard of that before. If you can find a webpage for one, I'd love to see it!

Leave a comment
Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *