Introduction:

One of the first types of vocabulary that you'll have learnt in English is that of clothes. I am sure that you already know the names in English for the different types of clothes that people wear (e.g. t-shirt, trousers, shoes etc...). But do you know what the names in English are for the different parts of clothes of these (e.g. the part of a pair of trousers that you can put money or your hand in) or the types of patterns (the shapes, lines, squares on the fabric/material of the clothing) that clothes have on them?

This is what you'll learn here.

In this online exercise on clothing vocabulary, you'll learn and remember the English names for the different parts of clothes and commonly worn patterns which learners of English often don't know. Knowing this type of vocabulary is very useful when either buying or talking about clothes.

To learn the English vocabulary you need to buy clothes in a shop/store, do our online exercises on 'Shopping for clothes vocabulary & phrases'.

Click here to see more online exercises on social English vocabulary


Exercise: Parts and patterns of clothing

Below you will find a description and an example(s) of 12 different parts or patterns of clothing. The name of the part or pattern is highlighted in each description in bold.

Read the description and example(s) and decide what the part or pattern is in your own language. Then do the quiz at the end to check if you are right.

1. Collar: It is a part of a jacket, shirt, jersey or coat that is at the top and goes around/touches a person's neck.

2. Sleeve: It is a part of a jacket, shirt, jersey or coat that covers a person's arm.

3. Patterned: A pattern/design on a piece of clothing that has shapes or images (e.g. triangles, flowers etc...) that cover the fabric/material.

4. Plain: When a piece of clothing has no patten/design (no repeated shapes or images on it) on the fabric/material. It is normally just one colour.

5. Zip: It is a metal (and sometimes plastic) part of a piece of clothing (normally on trousers or coats) that is used to open or close something very quickly.

6. Lace: Is the long and thin part of a shoe and a trainer/sneaker that is used to make sure that the shoe or trainer don't fall off/come off a person's foot.

7. Pocket: It is a part of a piece of clothing (normally on trousers, jackets or coats) where a person can put small ojects/things into (e.g. a wallet, money, mobile/cell phone etc...).

8. Button: Is a plastic, metal or wood round/circular part of a piece of clothing (normally on shirts, jackets, coats and sometimes on trousers) that is used to open or close something.

9. Checked: A pattern/design on a piece of clothing that has lots of small squares that cover the fabric/material.

10. Hood: It is a part of a piece of clothing (normally on coats) that is used to cover the head when it is raining or cold.

11. Striped: A pattern/design on a piece of clothing (normally on shirts) that has white or coloured vertical lines that cover the fabric/material.

12. Belt: It is a part (often made of leather) of a piece of clothing that is used to make sure that a pair of trousers or a skirt don't fall off/come off the person wearing them.



Quiz: English vocabulary for describing clothes

Below is a photo/picture of each of the words in bold from the above text. Now choose the word from the question's selection box which you believe matches the photo/picture. Only use one word once. Click on the "Check answers" button at the bottom of the quiz to check your answers.

When the answer is correct, two icons will appear next to the question. The first is an Additional Information Icon "". Click on this for extra information on the word/phrase and for a translation. The second is a Pronunciation Icon "". Click on this to listen to the pronunciation of the word/phrase and to do a pronunciation speaking test.

1. clothing exercise photoEach of these is called a              

Button:
(noun) 'buttons' are normally used to join together/fasten two parts of a piece of clothing (e.g. a coat). It can also be used as a verb 'to button', which means to join together/fasten two parts of a piece of clothing with 'buttons', e.g. 'button your coat it's cold outside'. In Spanish: "botón".

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Button:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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2. clothing exercise photoThis is called a              

Hood:
(noun) A 'hood' is a part of a coat which is used to cover the head. You can also find 'hoods' on other types of the clothes. The most common is on sweatshirt (a jumper/jersey/sweater which is often worn by sportsmen). When a sweatshirt has a 'hood', it is called a 'hooded sweatshirt' or a 'hoodie'. In Spanish: "capucha".

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Hood:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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3. clothing exercise photoThis is called a              

Belt:
(noun) A 'belt' has many different meaning. For clothes it is a long thin piece of material (normally leather) that is worn with trousers or a skirt. It is worn around the waist and is fastened/joined together with a 'buckle'. In Spanish: "cintúron".

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Belt:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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4. clothing exercise photoThis pattern is called              

Checked:
(adjective) This is a pattern/design on clothes and other things where there are lots of squares joined together. It is very common on shirts. This pattern is also called 'check' and in North America it is normally called 'plaid'. All three of the names for this pattern/design are normally used in front of the name of the piece of clothing, e.g. 'a checked shirt', 'a plaid jacket' or 'a check jersey'. In Spanish: "de cuadros".

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Checked:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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5. clothing exercise photoThis is called a              

Pocket:
(noun) A 'pocket' means a part of a piece of clothing which is used to store/keep small objects/things, e.g. 'where are my keys?' 'they are in your pocket'. Most pairs of trousers, jackets, coats have 'pockets'. In Spanish: "bolsillo/bolsa".

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Pocket:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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6. clothing exercise photoThis is called a              

Lace:
(noun) 'laces' are also called 'shoelaces'. They are used to stop shoes or trainers falling off people's feet. 'laces' are normally used with the verb 'to tie', which means to join the two ends of a 'lace' together, e.g. 'I couldn't tie my laces until I was 7 years old'. In Spanish: "cordón".

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Lace:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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7. clothing exercise photoThis pattern is called              

Striped:
(adjective) This is a pattern/design on clothes and other things where there are vertical lines. It is very common on shirts. 'striped' is normally used in front of the name of the piece of clothing, e.g. 'I like your striped shirt'. The noun is 'stripe', e.g. 'the stripes on your shirt are too thin'. If the 'stripes' are horizontal on a piece of clothing, you would say 'it's a shirt with horizontal stripes' and not 'it's a striped shirt'. In Spanish: "de rayas".

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Striped:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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8. clothing exercise photoThis is called a              

Collar:
(noun) It is the part of a shirt, blouse, dress, jersey etc... that surrounds/goes around the neck of a person. There are lots of different styles of 'collars', e.g. 'V neck collar', 'shirt collar', 'round collar' etc... In Spanish: "cuello".

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Collar:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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9. clothing exercise photoThis is called a              

Sleeve:
(noun) 'sleeves' are the parts of a piece of clothing that covers the arms. There are two main types of 'sleeves': 'long-sleeved' means that the 'sleeves' cover the whole arm (e.g. 'this is a long-sleeved shirt'), 'short-sleeved' means that only the top part of the arm is covered by the 'sleeves' (e.g. 'I like to wear short-sleeved shirts in summer'). A t-shirt, jersey without 'sleeves' is called 'sleeveless'. In Spanish: "manga".

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Sleeve:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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10. clothing exercise photoThis pattern is called              

Patterned:
(adjective) This is a pattern/design on clothes and other things where there are lots of shapes (e.g. triangles etc...) or images (e.g. flowers) which are repeated over the fabric/material. 'patterned' is normally used in front of the name of the piece of clothing, e.g. 'I like your patterned shirt'. The noun is 'pattern', e.g. 'I like the pattern on our dress'. In Spanish: "estampado".

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Patterned:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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11. clothing exercise photoThis is called a              

Zip:
(noun) A 'zip' is also called a 'zipper'. It is normally made of metal (but also can be made of plastic). It can also be used as a phrasal verb, 'to zip up'. This means to close a 'zip' on a piece of clothing, e.g. 'it's cold outside, zip up your coat'. In Spanish: "cremallera".

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Zip:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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12. clothing exercise photoThis pattern is called              

Plain:
(adjective) This is a type of pattern/design on clothes and other things where there is no pattern/design (no repeated shapes, images, lines, checks etc...) on the fabric/material. Normally, when you are describing a piece of clothing as 'plain', you say what colour it is, e.g. 'I am looking for a plain yellow skirt'. A 'plain' piece of clothing can have a company logo on it (e.g. Nike etc...). In Spanish: "liso".

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Plain:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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Practice

Now that you understand the new vocabulary, practise it by creating your own sentences with the new words/phrases.