Let's say you are a shoe seller. One day, a buyer approached you and told you that she wanted to buy her daughter a new shoes.

You then asked her this:

Shoe seller: What is her shoe size?


What shoe size does she take?

Do both of them of the same meaning? Because I think sentence1 is a bit off and unconventional...


Both are okay; it's just a style a particular register takes.

In the UK, it's common to say:

take: wear or require (a particular size of garment or type of complementary article): he takes size 5 boots.

Nevertheless, I've heard this common:

What's her shoe size?


What shoe size does she have? (InE)

| improve this answer | |
  • Agree, also add that "What shoe size does she need?" is another phrasing you might hear from a shoe seller, and that "shoe size" can be replaced with just "size" in all cases where the context is sufficiently clear. – the-baby-is-you Dec 23 '19 at 9:04
  • need would add am ambiguity. It may be replied: she needs a size 9...a size bigger as she's growing. – Maulik V Dec 23 '19 at 9:15
  • But wouldn't that be the answer the shoe seller is looking for? – the-baby-is-you Dec 23 '19 at 9:16
  • That's what I said..it'd add ambiguity. It can be said like that though. @the-baby-is-you – Maulik V Dec 23 '19 at 9:19
  • That's all I said; that you might hear it and it would be idiomatic. I'd also argue that it removes ambiguity if that's actually the answer you're seeking. – the-baby-is-you Dec 23 '19 at 9:22

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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