Finding the perfect wedding dress may be hard enough. Even once you do locate the dream dress, there's still work to be done. In nearly every case, wedding gowns need some form of alteration. Depending on where the purchase is made and the number of changes that you need, the process can take some time and money. With a little investment, however, you'll have a dress that perfectly complements your figure. Here are tips on what to expect in the dress alteration process.
Put the alteration off as much as possible
While you may be tempted to get the alteration done early, and cross the item off your list, it isn't the best way to go. Since wedding dresses tend to be skin hugging designs, bringing a dress in too early can result in a fit that's less than perfect, since you may put on or lose weight.
Bringing your dress in too close to the day of the wedding isn't a good idea either, because there may not be enough time to do all the alterations you need. Since detailed alterations can take four or five fittings, and often run into months, it's ideal to allow three months for the process, just to err on the side of caution.
Choose a true professional
If you're getting the wedding dress at a salon, chances are that they have their own in-house seamstresses for the perfect fit. Not all salons employ such experts, however. If you're at such a place, or if you're buying your dress online or at a wholesale outlet, you'll need to make arrangements for the alterations on your own. The number one rule is to go with a professional who specializes in wedding dress fittings. Even if you always got all your alterations done at the local dry cleaners, it isn't a good idea to trust them with intricate work, such as bustles, boning and hemlines.
Go exactly the way you will at the wedding
It's important when you head in for your alteration sessions that you go dressed in the exact same undergarments that you plan to wear on your wedding day. It wouldn't be a bad idea to bring your shoes and other accessories as well to ensure correct length. Additionally, not only is the alteration session about fitting, it's also about creating an overall look. It's only possible to alter for that when the entire ensemble is in place.
(Photography by AlexanderLipko / Shutterstock)
Bring another set of eyes
It's important to not go alone. Not only will you need additional perspective from someone close to you, you'll need to bring the person who will do the bustle on the day. Usually, that's the maid of honor. They will need to learn how to do it.
While calling the fitting session an alteration process may make it sound as if it only involves minor adjustments, the idea is to use professional tailors and seamstresses to practically re-create the dress. The process can be particularly detailed if you're using an older dress from your mother or another relative. It's important to allow enough time for the process, and to approach it with the care that it deserves.