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Standard Color and Size Codes

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The NRF Standard Color and Size Codes give retailers, vendors and manufacturers a common language for product color and size identification for EDI purposes that supplements the information conveyed by UPC codes.

The color and size codes are only available electronically, either for purchase from the NRF website, or through our partners GXS, InterTrade and SPS Commerce.  NRF members may purchase them for $200, nonmembers for $235.  To purchase the codes, create an account and log in to add them to your cart.

For more information about NRF Color and Size Codes, please contact Crystal Peace at peacec@nrf.com.

General Background Information

What is the NRF Standard Color and Size Code System?

The NRF Standard Color and Size Codes give retailers, vendors and manufacturers a common language for product color and size identification for EDI purposes that supplements the information conveyed by UPC codes.

For products that have a color and/or size, an NRF Color Code and/or an NRF Size Code are required Minimum Data Elements for implementation of the EDI Price Sales Catalog Transaction Set (832).  Visit the GS1 website to learn more about EDI.

What are the benefits of using the NRF Standard Color and Size Codes?

In addition to cost savings related to improved inventory management, fewer errors due to manual entry and reduced time for new item set up and maintenance, use of the codes allows retailers and their vendor partners to do automated analysis for sales trends by sizes and colors, and helps guide merchandise assortment planning. 

This helps ensure that the right merchandise is in the right place at the right time, benefiting not just retailers and vendors, but consumers, too.

Are the NRF Standard Color and Size Codes Part of the UPC?

The NRF Standard Color and Size Codes are not part of the UPC.  A UPC is a 12-digit code that includes the 6-to-10-digit vendor id number assigned by GS1, the 3-to-5-digit product id assigned by the manufacturer, and a final check digit. 

For more information on assigning UPCs, please visit Get Started With UPC Barcodes.

How can my company access the Codes?

The NRF Standard Color and Size codes are only available electronically, either from our partners GXS, InterTrade or SPS Commerce, or by purchasing them from NRF in Microsoft Access 2013 format.  

Do I have to be a member of NRF to obtain the Codes?

NRF membership is not required to obtain the NRF Standard Color and Size Codes.  The codes may be obtained from our Partners listed above.

What if I can’t find the NRF Code I need?

Select a code that best describes your item from the tables (it doesn't have to be an exact match).   New color codes can not be requested, but if you are looking for a size code and can’t find one that describes your item, please submit a request for a new size code through the New Code Request utility on the website through which you are accessing the codes.

What if I am having problems locating codes?

Please contact your provider directly: 

If you are accessing the codes through GXS Catalogue, please call 1.877.446.6847 or email cshelp@gxs.com.

If you are accessing the codes through InterTrade ecCatalogue, please contact InterTrade support directly by calling 1.800.873.7803 option #3 or by sending an email to customerservice@intertrade.com.

SPS Commerce clients using Universal Catalog Service should call 1.888.739.3232 or send an email to customersupport@spscommerce.com.

How Do I Select a Color Code?

A color is "Compared" or "Uncompared"

A color is “Uncompared” when a vendor offers only one shade of a color group for a specific Product ID/Style.  If a vendor offers multiple shades of a color group within one Product ID/Style (for example three kinds of dark brown), then the color is “Compared.”  The lowest number in a color group is for the “Uncompared” color.  For example, the NRF Color Code for "Uncompared Red" is 600.

Colors are arranged in Color Groups

The Color groups are: black, grey, white, brown, beige, green, blue, purple, red, pink, yellow, orange, miscellaneous (overflow codes).

Within a group, the colors range in intensity from darker to lighter

  • The lower the number, the darker the color.  For example, the blue group ranges from sub-groups Dark Blue (401-409) to Navy (410-419) to Medium Blue (420-429), etc., to the sub-group Light Pastel Blue (450-459).
  • Select the color code from the appropriate shade group within the color group to represent each of the color designations in a product line.  For example, the colors coffee, carob and chocolate fall into the dark brown shade group, 201-209.  
  • Assign each color variation within a particular Product ID a unique NRF color code.  The first code in the color group is the “uncompared” color code designation.  Use this code whenever color shades such as dark brown, rust/copper brown or light/pastel brown are not used for a vendor Product ID/Style.
  • You can use the same NRF Color Code to represent an entirely different shade for another product with a different Product ID/Style.

What do I do for multi-packs and assortments?

For assortments, such as three-packs of socks where the pairs are of different colors, use NRF Color Code 999, which is reserved for assortments. 

So what if I run out of colors?

No new color codes will be assigned.  Please reassign and re-use color codes according to the color code guidelines.  NRF recommends that you not assign NRF Standard Color Codes in your internal systems.

How Do I Select a Size Code?

The NRF Size Code category types:

  • Size Table 1 – Adult Male & Unisex Clothing and Furnishings
  • Size Table 2 – Boys & Unisex Student Clothing and Furnishings
  • Size Table 3 – Juniors, Misses, & Women’s Clothing and Furnishings
  • Size Table 4 – Infants, Toddlers, Girls and Children’s Clothing
  • Size Table 5 – Footwear
  • Size Table 6 – Linens, Domestics and Related Textiles
  • Size Table 7 – Home Furnishings, China Dinnerware and Accessories; Miscellaneous, Linear, Volume and Weight Measurements

NRF Size Code Basics

  1. Sizes within a category may be used assigned to any item within that category.  For example, size Small may be used to describe a shirt, a bag, pants, belt, etc.
  2. When selecting codes for bags, such as gym bags, use the One Size Fits All code, or use the Small, Medium or Large codes as appropriate.
  3. Size names are generally spelled out: Large instead of L, Medium instead of M, S for Small, XLarge for XL, etc.

Size codes have fields for Primary and Secondary sizes

  1. For apparel, the Primary Size refers to body size; the Secondary Size describes a Proportion, such as a waist or neck size, trouser rise, a cup size, or a general body proportion such as Petite. For example, to find the code for the men’s size 42 Short; search on Primary Size 42, Secondary Size Short (10651).  For the boy’s size 14 (no Secondary Size), search for size 14, no secondary size (20140).  For women’s size 36C, search for Primary size 36, Secondary size C (30745), and so on.
  2. What about Shoes?  For Shoes, the Primary Size refers to foot size; the Secondary Size describes the width which is generally spelled out.  For example, 8W is Primary Size 8, Secondary Size Wide (50437).  8WW is Primary Size 8, Secondary Size Wide Wide (50438). Use the Footwear table to select codes for all footwear (except socks) regardless of gender.  There are subcategories for Brazilian, European, Mondopoint, UK and US sizes.
  3. Jewelry: For necklaces and bracelets, use the Linear Measurements table to assign codes; for rings, use the Jewelry table to assign a code according to ring size; for earrings, pins and other jewelry accessories, use the One Size Fits All code in the appropriate category (Menswear, Womenswear, etc.).
  4. Linens: For Window Treatments, the Primary Size describes the most significant style characteristic and the Secondary Size describes the length in inches.  For example, under Valances and Window Accessories, the Primary Size may be Pouf or Ruffled or Tailored and the Secondary Size is the width in ranges of inches, such as 1-50, 51-100, 101-150, etc. For Bed Coverings, the Primary Size is typically a standard bed size such as Full, Queen, Crib, Basinet or California King.  The Secondary size will indicate if the item is Open Stock, Sets, or Total Bed.  In the case of Sheet, Quilt or Blanket sets, the Primary Size is the standard bed size, and the Secondary size describes the items in the set, for example “Flat, Fitted, 2 Pillowcases, 2 Euro Shams.”
  5. Sometimes, secondary sizes contain item descriptions.  In the Linens and Domestics table, for example, a Queen pillowcase will be Primary size Queen, Secondary size Pillowcase (60685).   A beach towel will be Primary size Towel, Secondary size Beach (60694).

Are size codes for socks in the Footwear tables?

Socks are considered to be apparel accessories, so men’s socks are in the Menswear tables, boys’ socks in the Boys Apparel tables, women’s socks in the Womenswear category, etc.

What do the Linear Measurements Describe?

Use the linear measurements table for the following categories: Art, Bracelets, Boxes, Candles, Carpets, Clocks, Frames, Luggage, Mirrors, Necklaces, Rugs, Vases, and all other items with a linear measurement of Length and Width.

For linear measurements, the Primary Size equals Length, while the Secondary Size equals Width. The larger size is always listed first in codes for linear measurements.  Linear sizes do not describe orientation (eg portrait vs. landscape).  Other tables describing length and width, such as Table Linens or Bath Rugs, follow this same principle of organization.

What is the difference between Pre-Packs, Set-Packs and Multi-Packs?

  1. A Pre-Pack, or standard assortment, is a collection of similar merchandise items that are sold and shipped together, for example, an assortment of men’s shirts that vary in color and size. Each item has its own UPC for scanning at the point of sale and the Pre-Pack is not sold as a single item to a consumer.
  2. A Set-Pack is a group of items ordered and shipped together, but can be sold either individually or as a set, for example a cookware set. Each item has its own UPC and can be sold as an individual item or the consumer may purchase the entire set.
  3. A Multi-Pack is a group of items which are intended to be sold as a single consumer unit at the point-of-sale, such as a 3-Pack of men’s white t-shirts or a 12 piece set of glassware.  A Multi-Pack is not intended to broken apart and sold as individual items. Generally, Multi-Pack items are not assigned an individual UPC code.
Contact Information for our Partners

GXS Catalogue

If you are accessing the codes through GXS Catalogue, please call 1.877.446.6847 or email cataloguesupport@gxs.com

InterTrade Electronic Product Catalogue

If you are accessing the NRF standard color and size codes through the InterTrade Electronic Product Catalogue, please call 1.800.873.7803 option #3 or email customerservice@intertrade.com.

SPS Commerce

SPS Commerce clients using Item Management should call 1.888.739.3232 or send an email to customersupport@spscommerce.com.