Knowing What Size Is Youth Large Shirt

youth large shirt

If you’re in the world of crafting and screen printing, you might have encountered the challenge of sizing your designs to fit a variety of t-shirt sizes. 

Whether you’re creating custom shirts for a family reunion, vacation, or any other occasion, it’s essential to understand how to scale your designs to accommodate different shirt sizes. 

In this article, we will delve into the process of sizing your designs, particularly focusing on Youth Large shirts, and optimizing them for screen printing.

Youth Large Shirt Sizing Considerations

what size is youth large shirt

The key to efficient screen printing on different-sized shirts is to minimize the number of screens you need. This requires careful planning and consideration of the screen and squeegee sizes you have at your disposal. Jennifer uses 10 by 14-inch frames for toddler and onesie sizes and 16 by 20-inch frames for adult sizes.

Screen Printing for All Sizes

Jennifer, the creative mind behind Pigskins and Pigtails, is here to guide us through this process. She specializes in teaching crafters how to use vinyl cutters for screen printing shirts at home. One common question she often encounters is how to size designs for screen printing on various-sized t-shirts.

Jennifer’s approach to screen printing involves using Bella Canvas shirts, which come in a wide range of sizes and colors. With sizes ranging from 5T to 3XL, she has her work cut out for her. Let’s explore her process step by step.

Design Size for Adult Shirts

For adult-sized shirts, Jennifer recommends using an 8 to 10-inch wide design, which works well for sizes ranging from small to 3XL or 4XL. Surprisingly, using the same design for both small and 4XL shirts creates a consistent and appealing look, particularly for group photos. It also allows her to use a single piece of vinyl for horizontal designs, optimizing efficiency.

Design Size for Youth and Toddler Shirts

When it comes to youth and toddler sizes, Jennifer scales down the design to 6 to 8 inches wide. This ensures a better fit on smaller shirts and maintains a harmonious look across all sizes. She uses an 8-inch wide design for youth shirts to achieve this balance.

Vertical Designs and Special Cases

For vertical designs, Jennifer advises being mindful of the height rather than the width. Scaling down to around 10 inches in height is recommended. Circular or square designs can be scaled to 10 by 10 inches, but she suggests considering a slightly smaller size for an aesthetically pleasing result.

The Screen Printing Process

what size is youth large shirt

Design Preparation:

  • Begin by creating or obtaining the design you want to print on your shirts. The design can be digital or hand-drawn, but it needs to be converted into a stencil or screen-ready format.

Screen Setup:

  • Select a screen printing frame that matches the size of your design. Frames can vary in size, so choose one that suits your project.
  • Attach a fine mesh screen to the frame. The mesh’s density will depend on the complexity of your design. Coarser meshes allow more ink to pass through, while finer meshes are ideal for intricate designs.

Emulsion Coating:

  • Apply a light-sensitive emulsion to the mesh screen, ensuring even coverage. This emulsion will harden when exposed to light, creating a stencil for your design.
  • Allow the emulsion to dry in a dark room.

Creating the Stencil:

  • Place your design (printed on transparency film or drawn on a clear acetate sheet) on top of the emulsion-coated screen.
  • Expose the screen to ultraviolet (UV) light. The light will harden the emulsion everywhere except where your design is placed, creating a stencil on the screen.
  • After exposure, wash the screen with water to reveal your design’s stencil.

Ink Preparation:

  • Choose the ink colors you want to use for your design. Screen printing inks come in various types, including water-based, plastisol, and discharge inks.
  • Mix and prepare the ink to achieve the desired color and consistency.

Printing Setup:

  • Place the fabric or item you want to print on a flat surface, such as a printing press or table.
  • Position the prepared screen with the stencil over the fabric, ensuring accurate alignment.


  • Apply a generous amount of ink onto the screen’s stencil area.
  • Use a squeegee to evenly spread the ink over the stencil, pushing it through the mesh onto the fabric below.
  • Lift the screen carefully to reveal the printed design on the fabric.


  • Allow the freshly printed fabric to air dry or use a heat source (such as a conveyor dryer) to cure the ink. The curing process ensures that the ink adheres permanently to the fabric.


  • If you have multiple shirts or items to print, repeat the printing process with the same screen or prepare additional screens for different designs or colors.


  • Clean the screen thoroughly to remove any remaining ink and emulsion. Proper screen maintenance prolongs its lifespan.

Final Inspection:

  • Inspect the printed items for quality, ensuring that the design is clear, vibrant, and free from imperfections.

Difference Between Youth Large Shirts vs. Adult Small Shirts

what size is youth large shirt

Size and Fit:

  • Youth Large Shirt: A Youth Large shirt is designed for older children, typically in the age range of 12-14 years. It has a slimmer and shorter fit, tailored to the proportions of a growing child. The chest width of a Youth Large shirt is approximately 18-19 inches, and the length is around 24-25 inches.
  • Adult Small Shirt: An Adult Small shirt, on the other hand, is intended for adults and has a more generous fit. It is larger and longer compared to a Youth Large shirt. The chest width of an Adult Small shirt varies but is generally around 18-20 inches, and the length is typically 27-28 inches.

Sleeve Length:

  • Youth Large Shirt: Youth shirts often have shorter sleeve lengths to suit the proportions of younger wearers.
  • Adult Small Shirt: Adult shirts tend to have longer sleeves that cover more of the arm.


  • Youth Large Shirt: Youth shirts may have narrower necklines to match the style preferences of younger individuals.
  • Adult Small Shirt: Adult shirts usually have wider necklines, providing more room and comfort around the neck area.

Design Proportions:

When designing graphics or screen prints for these two sizes, it’s crucial to consider the differences in dimensions. Designing for a Youth Large shirt requires a smaller and more compact design, while an Adult Small shirt can accommodate a larger design.

Occasion and Intended Audience:

Youth Large shirts are typically suitable for pre-teen and early teenage wear, making them ideal for youth events, school activities, and sports teams.

Adult Small shirts are intended for adult wearers and are commonly chosen for various occasions, including casual wear, promotional events, and corporate functions.

Fabric and Material:

The choice of fabric and material can also differ between youth and adult shirts, depending on the brand and intended use. 

Youth shirts may use lighter and softer materials to cater to the comfort needs of children, while adult shirts can vary in terms of fabric weight and texture.

Youth Shirt Size Chart

what size is youth large shirt

Youth XS (Extra Small):

  • Chest Width: 14-16 inches (35.6-40.6 cm)
  • Length: 18-20 inches (45.7-50.8 cm)
  • Typically fits children aged 3-4 years old.

Youth S (Small):

  • Chest Width: 16-17 inches (40.6-43.2 cm)
  • Length: 20-22 inches (50.8-55.9 cm)
  • Generally suitable for children aged 6-8 years old.

Youth M (Medium):

  • Chest Width: 18-19 inches (45.7-48.3 cm)
  • Length: 22-24 inches (55.9-61 cm)
  • Fits children aged 10-12 years old.

Youth L (Large):

  • Chest Width: 19-20 inches (48.3-50.8 cm)
  • Length: 24-25 inches (61-63.5 cm)
  • Designed for kids aged 12-14 years old.

Youth XL (Extra Large):

  • Chest Width: 20-21 inches (50.8-53.3 cm)
  • Length: 25-26 inches (63.5-66 cm)
  • Typically worn by teenagers aged 14-16 years old.

How Do I Know My Body Dimensions?

what size is youth large shirt

Use the Right Tools:

  • To measure your body accurately, you’ll need a few tools:
  • A flexible measuring tape
  • A full-length mirror (optional)
  • A notepad and pen to record measurements

Wear Fitted Clothing:

For precise measurements, wear fitted clothing or undergarments that don’t add bulk.

Find a Clear Space:

Stand in front of a full-length mirror or in a well-lit area where you can see yourself clearly.

Measure Your Height:

  • Stand with your back straight and your feet together.
  • Place the measuring tape at the base of your feet and extend it all the way to the top of your head. This measurement will give you your height in inches or centimeters.

Measure Your Chest or Bust:

  • For chest measurements, wrap the tape measure around the fullest part of your chest, usually right under your armpits. Ensure the tape is parallel to the ground and snug but not tight.
  • For bust measurements (for women), measure around the fullest part of your bust.

Measure Your Waist:

  • To measure your waist, find the narrowest part of your torso, typically above your belly button but below your ribcage. Wrap the measuring tape around this area.
  • For accurate results, breathe normally and keep the tape snug but not too tight.

Measure Your Hips:

Stand with your feet together and measure around the widest part of your hips and buttocks.

Measure Your Inseam (for Pants):

For the inseam measurement, stand with your feet slightly apart. Measure from your inner thigh down to your ankle, following the natural curve of your leg.

Measure Your Arm Length:

To measure your arm length, extend one arm out to the side, parallel to the floor. Measure from the top of your shoulder down to your wrist.

Record and Compare:

Write down each measurement and compare it to sizing charts provided by clothing brands. These charts will help you determine your size for various garments.

Consider Fit Preferences:

Keep in mind that clothing preferences vary. Some people prefer a looser fit, while others prefer a more tailored look. Use your measurements as a starting point and adjust based on your personal style.


In conclusion, understanding the size of a Youth Large shirt is essential when you’re looking for the perfect fit for children in the age range of 12-14 years. When selecting a Youth Large shirt, keep in mind the intended wearer’s age and body proportions. These shirts often have shorter sleeves and narrower necklines to match youthful style preferences.

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