Altering a corset back to a zipper back with buttons…

posted 3 months ago in Dress
Post # 2
3118 posts
Sugar bee

I don’t think there is nearly enough fabric in the back to do it.

Post # 4
130 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2019 - Beverly Hills, CA

Not realistic unless you’re planning on losing a significant amount of weight, mostly from your bust, in order to take in enough to accommodate the zipper, which I also think is unrealistic in a three month period.

Post # 6
142 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: City, State

If you see the conversion from zipper to corset back you’ll see that it is very doable (remove the loops, find zipper with right length and color, sew to sides, put a top hook closure so zip doesn’t slip). 

However, I would just have same worry as other bees. You’ll lose the inches sure, but you also lose the stretch factor and forgiveness in terms of being able to adjust for the different parts of your waist/bust, so just know additional alterations could be needed to give you an inch more here, and inch more there that aren’t necessary with the corset back (it’s why you see most conversions going from zip to corset). 

The edges also have to meet to hide the zipper teeth and for you to have room to breathe and move, so plan on an extra half inch – this is from my personal experience, if you only just are able to zip it, what tends to happen is that the zipper bulges out and is exposed because the edges can’t lie flat to cover it.

You can try measuring yourself to give yourself an idea of what will need to change (whether it’s more aggressive diet or budget in more alterations money). Make sure to overlap the open sides of the back by 0.5 inches to account for what measurement you really need to get in the dress (I made the same mistakes). Take the bust, waist and hip measurements and compare to where you are currently.

Remember to lose about one inch in waist or a dress size it’s 10-15lbs, but depends on where you tend to lose weight. If you don’t lose it in the bust you may need to have a strip of fabric added at back or side like this (and the beading replicated to cover it which tends to be expensive).


Good luck! I had two inches added to my dress at waist (lace covered where it met bodice) and then lost 15 pounds/1 dress size. My dress is so much more comfortable now, but when I hadn’t hit my weight goal I was seriously considering getting another dress.

Post # 8
142 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: City, State

Chelsea928 :  Awesome!! Sorry I wasn’t clear this isn’t my dress (stole it as good example of adding a gusset and then hiding it) but I’m glad it helps. Anything can be altered, just have to find a good seamstress and have the stomach for some extra $$$ spent!

Post # 9
3846 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

I did this, for one thing because I don’t love the look of corsets, and also because the size the dress shop recommended for me ended up HUGE and the edges of the corset touched easily. Pics of model vs my dress back below. I think a zip looks so much neater and daintier and it was certainly easier to do up! No regrets there. I love buttons too, I thought of getting them on mine but in the end couldn’t be botjered haha. I may have had more leeway because my dress was only fitted to the waistline so fitting to hips wasn’t an issue.

Obviously it all depends on whether you can pull it tight enough to get rid of the corset… your tailor can advise on whether there is anything in the seams to take out or do a gusset as above. Those would be expensive option I imagine due to the beading. If you are wearing a bra in the picture, try taking it off, that could give you an extra half inch or so up top!


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