English Language Learners Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for speakers of other languages learning English. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I know the meaning of one size fits all, but this is the first time I've come across the expression one size bigger. By using Google I know that you could say one size smaller.

But I don't know exactly the function of one in "one size". For example, can I say:"Do you have these shoes two/three size bigger?"

I think I don't have to make size plural if two/three is added, don't I?

share|improve this question
The answer can be found in special usage of certain adjectives. He is 12 years old. We are two players short. These pants are two sizes too big. – JayHook Dec 29 '13 at 17:16
up vote 10 down vote accepted

The "one" in "one size bigger" refers to the number of sizes bigger, in this case one. If you're holding a pair of size 11 shoes and you ask for the shoes "one size bigger", I would bring you a pair of size 12 shoes (11 + 1 = 12).

You can certainly say "two/three sizes bigger", in which cases "sizes" should be plural, since you're counting the number of sizes.

Since we're talking shoes, you can also say, "half a size bigger".

share|improve this answer
Also, let's not forget about how the Grinch's heart grew three sizes that day. – J.R. Dec 29 '13 at 21:22
"And what happened then? Well, in Whoville they say that the Grinch's small heart grew three sizes that day." Thanks @J.R. for the memory retention technique. – learner Dec 30 '13 at 0:33

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.