(Closed) Wedding gown alteration questions?

posted 8 years ago in Dress
Post # 3
5622 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2014

It just all depends what needs done…

Wedding dresses are made to fit very tall brides, so all shorter brides will most likely need to get it hemmed.

And for alot of brides, they must order a dress that fits their largest measurement – for me, my wasit measured for a size 20 dress, but my hips measured for a size 24… I purchased the 24 and have to alter everything else down to fit.

Also, many brides choose to change their dress in some way or another.. weather it be adding a corset or buttons.. more fabric, an overlay, adding straps, ect.

There’s is alot to be done with a dress, I wouldn’t say its uncommon to spent $600+ on alterations.

Post # 5
8425 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

It really depends on the dress I think. Some just need more detailed tailoring than others, and some are quite complicated in terms of layers, applique, lace, etc. I think just my hem was $150 because I had a multi-layered skirt, and my total was $400ish.

Post # 6
230 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I think it just depends on where you go, the details of the dress, and honestly, how particular you are. 

My dress was $1050. The bridal shop quoted me $600 in alterations so I found an independent seamstress. She charged me $150 to take it up a half inch, take it in about 2 sizes and to do a 1 point bustle. I only had 2 fittings. The first they measured me to take it in and the second they adjusted the hem. The last time I went in, they made sure everything fit and I was happy with it and then I brought it home. 🙂 

Post # 7
98 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Almost all brides need to have their dresses hemmed at the bottom, and many need adjustments in the bust and waist as well.  When you look at dresses, keep in mind that the more detail on the dress (beading, lace, etc…) the more the alterations will likely be.  The seamstress has to keep the look of the dress intact when altering it, so, for example, if you buy a dress with an intricate, scalloped train, instead of just cutting fabric off of the bottom to make it fit you, he/she will actually have to deconstruct the dress and take fabric away from the waistline to bring the whole skirt up.  My personal opinion is that you should buy the dress you want to buy, because it is your wedding gown!  If you think you’re going to go with something very ornate though, consider buying from a seller that has the designer custom-make the dress to fit you rather than someplace like David’s that just sells the gowns straight off the rack.

Post # 9
230 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

@Birdiebaby4:  I know! It’s insane! I couldn’t believe the cost the bridal shop gave me. I felt like the independent seamstress I went to did an awesome job for the price and I liked that I didn’t have to do a million fittings (seriously, who has time for that?!).

One thing the seamstress suggested was not starting your fittings too early. She said the brides that come back the most are the ones who start really early. I started my fittings about 6 weeks before the wedding.

Post # 10
892 posts
Busy bee

We just got back from my daughter’s dress fitting #2.  They had previously measured to take in the bust, add a corset inside, remove the skirt (about 10-12 layers of fabric and tulle) to raise it up on the bodice about 2 inches.  This costs $600.  Today they measured for the bustle and to sew some embelishments back on.  Another $200.  While I think this is a little high, we have already invested so much in the dress.  It would be a shame to not have it fit properly.


People always compare the fit of bridal gowns and off the rack dresses.  If an off the rack dress does not fit properly, most people will find another dress rather than invest in alterations.  You can do that in bridal too, but I think it will take a lot longer to find something that fits properly and makes you fall in love.


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