Wedding Gowns + Alterations

So I was recently talking to one of my brides about alterations for her dress and the standard timeline for when to do it. When is the right time, too soon and too late? She had no idea, obviously, and that is what I am here for... but not all of you have me! :) So here are a few tips on when to begin alterations and how to prepare. Oh - and grab a glass of champagne and your best girl friend. You are getting custom fitted for the perfect gown to wear on your perfect day when you marry your {mostly ;) } perfect fiancé. Celebrate!

  1. Schedule your first fitting appointment three months before your wedding. Plan on having two to four fittings before your wedding (talk to your tailor. It all depends on your dress and which pieces and sections you have to alter). Remember, if you anticipate weight gain or loss before your wedding, don’t have your dress fitted too early.
  2. Wedding gowns are intricate and highly structured. If your bridal salon or boutique doesn’t offer fittings on site, be sure to go to a professional seamstress with experience working with wedding dresses. Your wedding's fashion should always be in the hands of the pros.
  3. Remind your attendants to schedule alterations for their wedding bridesmaid dresses. Bridesmaid dresses aren’t as complicated as wedding gowns, but often require minor adjustments at the bodice and hemline.
  4. Bring your lingerie and shoes to all of your fittings. Your tailor needs to know exactly how high your heels are in order to ensure that your dress’s hemline sweeps the floor properly. Some dresses can have a bra pad sewn into them while others require a specialized bra.
  5. If your dress has a complicated bustle, bring one of your attendants to your fittings. Your tailor will show your attendant—generally your maid of honor—how to fasten the bustle properly. (I once had a bride with 37 bustle points! :) It took us several minutes to tie it up.)
  6. Even if you do NOT need alterations, you will most likely need a bustle sewn into your dress. Dresses do not arrive with bustles already designed and ready to go. :)

Happy Planning!

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