Post # 1
So I ordered my dress and it’s in and ready to start alterations http://www.maggiesottero.com/dress.aspx?style=19503 I am so excited! I am 5 ft 10 and the sample (a size bigger) had the perfect length. When mine came in, it was 2 in too long (HUH?? can they order different lengths, and did I get screwed somehow) so I was advised to either get heels or pay to have it shortened. I dont want to do heels since my fiance and I are already the same height and I simply hate towering over others.
The seamstress at the shop I purchased it at said it’d be ‘terribly expensive” since it’s such a complex bottom. Please look at this bottom and tell me how it’s complex? Aside from layers, there is no design to impact. I am no expert but need advice on how hard and how expensive it should be to shorten it about 1 1/2 in.
Along with length, I need some on the sides, which I was expecting and I am not worried about.
What did you pay to have your dress altered? I will have to pay to have it shortened, taken in on the side a little, and sew in a belt. What do you think I should expect to pay?
Post # 2
I think a lot of it depends on where you live. I was quoted $745 from the salon that I bought my dress at!!! YIKES! Now, admittedly, I did have quite a bit done to my dress. I had the sides taken in both at the waist and the hips to give it more of a trumpet silhouette, I had the zipper back removed and replaced with a corset back. I also had two types of bustles put on, one for the under skirt and one for the over layer. I didn’t have any length taken off as I am wearing very high heels, but all of the layers of the dress contributed to the high price quote at the salon. The seamstress that I ended up using said she had to hand sew all of the beading and lace back on. Having said all that, I did find an amazing seamstress that works out of her house and caps all “basic” alterations at $250. She added an extra $100 for the corset. So, all in, I’ve paid $350. I think you need to shop around. Look at local reviews.
Post # 4
I think I paid $300. I had a cathedral length train and I didn’t cut it back so the seamstress had to hem the entire thing. I had 14 bustles and some minor repairs to beading on the bodice (tightening).
Post # 5
KayKPhillips: i paid a lot. $450.
my dress was a lace ‘modified a-line’ (i.e. a soft trumpet). i had a hem, a bustle (a five-point french bustle, which is where most of the cost was allocated) and cups put in.
but, i live in a very expensive area and got my dress at a boutique, so that hiked the costs up significantly.
Post # 6
I paid $475 for a bustle, dress shortened, and the sides taken in at the top. I would get quotes from more than one seamstress if the one at the shop is expensive.
Post # 7
I paid $360. I had a double bustle put in (one for when I wear my heels, one for when I’m in flats later in the evening), cups sewn in, the neckline of my dress taken in, and a hem.
I was quoted upwards of $500 from a different shop, so definitely do your research!
Post # 8
KayKPhillips: Where do you live? I’d expect Kansas City to have a different cost than Manhattan.
It’s about porportions and you have lots of layers = complex. The design impact is to replace the lace bits so that it’s accurate to the design of the dress. Removing and resewing lace is not simple. If you don’t care, that’s fine, but be aware that the overall effect might be different since the lace bits, if they aren’t moved, will be placed differently relative to the new hem / length.
I have a simple lace sheath (2 layers + 1 layer lace overlay, no bits — solid lace) and I’m paying $400 in SF to have it shortened and a sweep train shaped in, bodice re-proportioned, sewn in belt and bustled.
You just need to get quotes from different seamstresses. My cousin in Manhattan had to buy a different dress because she took her original dress to a little-known seamstress in the neighborhood who ruined her dress. She didn’t have to pay for the alterations, but her contract disclaimed liability on the seamstress’ part, so she was out of a dress. The $100 all up alterations ended up costing her the price of her wedding dress instead. Not worth it, imho.
Post # 9
All great input, thanks! I live in a suburb of Seattle. pretty high cost of living, sadly! 🙂
Is the bottom a tough fix? It’s not lace or anything… :/
Post # 10
KayKPhillips: It is if they hem each layer by layer + re-place the lace bits… are you on the East Side? I used to live in Seattle, so I totally get it!
Post # 11
- Wedding: April 2013 - Valparaiso, IN
A lady from my church is a seamstress and she did my dress. She charges $10/hr and it took her 10 hours. So it ended up being $100. My sister went with someone local. Her dress was a few sizes too big (it was a 10. She wears a 2). And she paid $75 for it. You could ask around. Just make sure you talk to them before prom season. Haha.
Post # 12
bitsybee: Bellevue!! eek! Got my dress in Bellingham though. Happy to drive a bit for a great seamstress at a good price.
Post # 13
I was lucky. I gained some weight and so I didn’t need any fit alterations at all. I put in a tack to raise the v-neck a bit, myself. So the only alterations I paid for was having the train removed (it was the correct length in the front). I found a seamstress that works from her home who charges $20 per hour and it ended up costing $60. I went out and gave her the dress and she got the length where she thought it should be. A week later I went back out to check the level because she had pinned it all the way around and in both layers. Then I went back to pick it up a week or two after that. It was pretty easy. I don’t think your skirt looks terribly complicated, but maybe it has to do with the number of layers/fabric? I’d definnitely get some price estimates from a seamstress who works from her home – they’re generally much cheaper since they don’t have to pay for a storefront.
Post # 14
- Wedding: June 2014 - Fourth Presbyterian Church, Chicago, IL & Cheney Mansion, Oak Park, IL
My seamstress said she charges $30/hr and the cost typically ranges between $400-$600. I didn’t feel like I needed much done but she laid it all out for me and I guess I do (It fits me fine, so unlikely to need to be taken in–just the bustle, hem and slight change to the neckline.) I was surprised it was so much, but $30/hr sounds like a fair price to me…
Post # 15
I paid $350. That was to take 4 in. off my dress (which was really two dresses), completely remove the lace appliques and put them back on, fix the entire top since it was way too big, and the bustle.