Wedding Gown Alteration Advice

It’s one of the most important times of your life. You’ve planned everything out from the moment you meet your fiancé and are now at the final stage of choosing the perfect dress. So, how do you choose the perfect dress? The first decision to be made is whether to keep it as is or make some alterations. As we all know, wedding gowns can be very costly. So, it’s worth considering if it’s worth it to spend up to £2000 on a dress to make some minor alterations.

It is very common for brides to want to make alterations to the wedding gown. Most bridal gowns need some adjustment and may need bustles sewn in the back to add fullness and comfort if your dress does not have a train. Be prepared to pay more for your wedding gown as the average bride spends between £50 and £200 on alterations.

If you already know what alterations need to be done on your gown then call around and get some telephone bids. You don’t have to use the bridal shop’s alterations services but it is best not to cut corners which you may regret later. An experienced seamstress would do a much better job than your average tailor at your local dry-cleaner.

Can Every Bridal Dress be Altered?

Just remember that not every gown can be altered to fit you perfectly. Remember these two rules:

  1. It is easier to make a gown fit than to make it bigger. If you’re wearing your mother’s gown then it would be worth it to get the gown to fit. However, if your buying a new gown then make sure it fits you well. Making bridal gowns bigger is difficult and you may not like the shape of the gown afterwards.
  2. Make sure you buy a gown that is not more than one size larger than your own size. Proportionally, larger gowns are designed larger all over the dress. If only the side seams are taken in, the gown may not fit right. However, some dresses are designed to fit many sizes with a corset back which ties instead of zips. Try to stay as close to the right size for you to get the best fit.
Wedding Gown Alteration
Cutting should be a last resort

Could the Alterations Be Done By Myself?

If you or any of your family members or friends are able to make alterations to your dress then that could save you a lot of money. For example, a hem from a professional seamstress could cost you from £40 for a basic hem to £150 for multiple layers. For someone who knows their way around a sewing room, creating a basic hem or multiple hem layers would drive down the costs of the alteration. It’s all dependent on how your dress is designed. If your gown has lace at the hemline then it could require some extensive work.

Some alterations should just be left for someone who knows what they are doing. However, most gowns and created to be altered in order to make the adjustments easier to fix. Make sure you view the interior design of your dress before you take it on to see whether it would be difficult to make easy adjustments. And rule of thumb, what you cut cannot be easily put back so do so as a last resort.

Timeline of Alterations

If you can, order your gown at least 12 weeks from your wedding day so that you give the seamstress or tailor enough time to make the right adjustments. Make sure to plan your last fitting many weeks before your wedding in order to make last-minute adjustments. You could have lost or gained some weight during the stressful period of organising your big day.

Alterations Tips

It would be best to try on your wedding gown without make-up as you don’t want to get the wedding dress dirty. Also, wear your most comfortable and nicest underclothes as it may be likely that you would be partially dressed throughout your fitting.

Make that you wear the same bra and shoes that you would be wearing at your wedding. Buy the right shoes with heels before your dress is altered (before they are hemmed).