Alterations for size or styling to shop bought or vintage wedding dresses are important to make a dress look like it belongs to you and give you confidence on your big day. Very few people are a standard dress size so most dresses need adjustment to the bodice, hem length and straps. Changes to the style; adding straps, changing necklines or lace applique can transform an off the peg dress into something uniquely special.
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I have worked in bridal alterations for more than 15 years and there is very little I cannot manage. If you are unsure your dress can be altered the way you would like I can offer advice at a free fitting consultation.
How long do wedding dress alterations take?
I recommend alteration work is started 3-6 weeks before your wedding day to allow for any weight change. Most good seamstresses will get very busy, especially in the summer months so pre-booking your sewing slot in advance is essential.
Check my availability for sewing slots suitable to your wedding date by submitting an enquiry here.
How many fittings will I need?
Two is usual, one to pin the changes and another to check everything is perfect before you take the dress away. Occasionally a third fitting is needed, if a further tweak is needed. My suggested timeframe of starting 3-6 weeks before your wedding allows plenty of time for fittings.
I take a limited number of alteration bookings per month and am usually fully booked 3-4 months in advance, possibly even sooner for busy summer months. Please enquire in good time to avoid disappointment.
A booking-in deposit of £40 secures a sewing slot for you in my schedule. This is deductible from your final bill. Weekday fittings are free, evening and weekend appointments are charged at £10 each.
You are welcome to bring the dress in for an early assessment and firm quote, before booking-in. Or you can book your ideal sewing slot without visiting and I will see the dress for the first time at the fitting appointment. I have altered more than a thousand dresses in my time so unless your alterations are very out of the ordinary an early assessment would be for your peace of mind rather than my benefit.
How much do wedding dress alterations cost?
A typical wedding dress alteration cost is £100-£300
I charge £40/h for sewing work. Costs will differ from dress to dress depending on how each dress is constructed. Fuller skirts, multiple layers, lace edges, beading detail or delicate fabrics are all elements likely to increase the cost of your alterations. Very occasionally work might take longer than a seamstress expected at the outset. My breadth of experience at cost estimation means I very rarely have to charge more than my original quote.
Can you give me a quote by email?
No. I only give firm quotes in person. But if you send me pictures of your dress I can let you know if there is anything about your dress style that might take us outside the usual costs outlined below.
I can give a firm cost estimate/quote at a pre-fitting consultation or at your first official fitting as best suits you.
All prices are a guide only, costs are as individual as each brides’ requirements.
Common Size Alterations
Take in dress at sides
Bust only £40-£100
Bust and Waist £50-£120
Bust, waist and hip £60-£180
(may include multiple layers of skirt)
Front only, tapered into train from sides
Prices from: £40 hemmed layers
£15 cut edge layers (tulle and net)
£60 lace edge layers
Double the cost for hems all round, taking up the train as well
Usually free with other alterations
for simple “button and loop”, over or under bustles.
From £5-£15 if no other work required
or for more complicated bustle arrangements
Other sizing alterations such as reducing bodice cup size, narrowing or shortening sleeves, removing trains etc can be quoted for at a consultation.
Common Style alterations:
Add straps from £40-£120 depending on style and materials required
Add sleeves from £100 + materials
Change back fastening to:
Lace up with eyelets from £70
Lace up with loops and flat lacing from £80
Buttons and loops from £80
Add buttons next to zip from £50
Other style alterations such as adding lace applique or beaded detail, changing the neckline front or back, adding a sash or beaded belt or narrowing a skirt shape can be quoted for at a consultation.
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