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...


1 Answer 1


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)

  • 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. Dec 23, 2019 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, 2019 at 9:15
  • But wouldn't that be the answer the shoe seller is looking for? Dec 23, 2019 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, 2019 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. Dec 23, 2019 at 9:22

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