Will altering this wedding dress destroy it?

AndagainSalvage

Team Haverchuck
Aug 1, 2010
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1
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Hubby and I have not been able to have an "official" wedding (a lot came up!) and we are planning one for Spring 2014. I found my dream dress, and it's actually a relatively inexpensive dress to begin with (Maggie Sottero), but I found one REALLY cheap on this recycled bride website but it's a size 16. I am about a size 8....

If I was to purchase the dress in a 16 and have it hemmed to fit me, would detail get lost? Anybody have experience with this?
 

Sternchen

O.G.
May 16, 2006
24,737
27
35
Bavaria, Germany
From a 16 to an 8? Absolutely. The whole dress would likely have to be remade, as shoulder width would have to be adjusted and that would just screw everything up.

Seamstreses can do a lot, but I don't think basically halving the size is possible.
 

newmommy_va

....................
Feb 11, 2011
1,993
36
USA
There have been threads on this in the wardrobe forum - describing great success - with the assistance of excellent tailors.

It is absolutely doable with the right tailor!! :smile: If you include the cost of tailoring to the price of the new dress - and you still love it - then, why not? Otherwise, I'm confused as to why you're torn between the "really cheap" dress and the one that you've described as your "dream dress", which is as you've described, already relatively inexpensive.

Good luck on your decision and congrats in advance for your "official" wedding! :smile:

Hubby and I have not been able to have an "official" wedding (a lot came up!) and we are planning one for Spring 2014. I found my dream dress, and it's actually a relatively inexpensive dress to begin with (Maggie Sottero), but I found one REALLY cheap on this recycled bride website but it's a size 16. I am about a size 8....

If I was to purchase the dress in a 16 and have it hemmed to fit me, would detail get lost? Anybody have experience with this?
 

momhappy

Member
Jan 23, 2013
135
1
Going from a 16 to an 8 is probably something that an expert tailor could do, but it's not something that I'd be willing to risk. You said yourself that your dream dress is relatively inexpensive, so go with the one that doesn't need major alterations and save yourself one less hassle when it comes to your wedding planning...
 

AndagainSalvage

Team Haverchuck
Aug 1, 2010
983
1
39
Thanks! Relatively inexpensive is around $900 retail on the site I found it, in comparison to the $150 that the girl wants for this one lol - so it's a tough decision because I keep thinking what I could use the rest of the money towards in the wedding! That's why I'm having such a tough decision.

I also worry that this could possibly be fake. Or even the website I found it for $900 may be fake. I just don't know how to tell. I'm great at deciphering fake purses and denim, but wedding dresses? No idea. I've scouted out bridal shops and can't find the dress anywhere since it's an older style. But I've had my sights set on it for several years. I have shopped and tried on many others, but nothing compares to how I feel when I see this dress.

I'll post a stock photo:



the back:

 

Hessefan

O.G.
Sep 14, 2009
2,417
517
Generally tailors don't recommend altering anything more than two sizes down. People often imagine that you just take all the seams in by several inches, but that's not how it works. All the pattern pieces are proportioned differently for different sizes.
The other problem with the dress you've posted is the beading. Depending on how it is attached, taking it apart may ruin it all. Also, the bust inserts would be much too big and would have to be replaced.
 

AndagainSalvage

Team Haverchuck
Aug 1, 2010
983
1
39
I think you're right :/ - I don't know what kind of mess that could create if the beading has to be touched. I think I am going to pass. I have a bad feeling about the dress the more I take the time to think about it. And I keep questioning why it's priced so inexpensively. I wish there was just one place that had a sample of it so I could try it on. I'm going to keep calling around!

Thanks everyone for helping me not think too impulsively (which I'm often guilty of)

Generally tailors don't recommend altering anything more than two sizes down. People often imagine that you just take all the seams in by several inches, but that's not how it works. All the pattern pieces are proportioned differently for different sizes.
The other problem with the dress you've posted is the beading. Depending on how it is attached, taking it apart may ruin it all. Also, the bust inserts would be much too big and would have to be replaced.
 

AndagainSalvage

Team Haverchuck
Aug 1, 2010
983
1
39
I spoke too soon, because its too late! I showed mom and asked for her opinion and she wanted to do something nice for me, and bought it. She said it's not a big deal and won't be much of a loss since it was so inexpensive. I will let you know how it works out!!
 

renza

O.G.
Jan 3, 2009
3,767
27
Generally tailors don't recommend altering anything more than two sizes down. People often imagine that you just take all the seams in by several inches, but that's not how it works. All the pattern pieces are proportioned differently for different sizes.
The other problem with the dress you've posted is the beading. Depending on how it is attached, taking it apart may ruin it all. Also, the bust inserts would be much too big and would have to be replaced.
Yes, people really need to keep these sorts of things in mind before they claim that an "expert" tailor can alter a beaded dress down 4 sizes. A really good tailor/seamstress would be responsible and tell you NOT to make such drastic alterations because the dress will not have the correct proportions unless they basically remake the entire thing.
 

CEC.LV4eva

O.G.
Jun 4, 2006
16,953
1,010
Absolutely no.

Is it doable though? YES! but will require an extraordinary amount of labor which in and of itself going to cost you at least 300$+++ if you find an "excellent taylor" who most likely decline doing this type of work anyhow. My thinking is more of around 500$ so if you add this to a 150$ dress... it doesn't make sense that alterations cost more so than the dress itself.
I'll give you some perspective - my seamstress/tailor is excellent and extremely professional and I have her do all my designer dresses (and other clothing) which are ALREADY in my size but I like things tighter sometimes by half a size smaller or shorten the hem cuz I'm not model-like tall. A "simple" hemming at the skirt, nipping in the waist, and shoulders are already 100$. Of course, my dresses tend to be very complicated on their own (Roland Mouret is notoriously known for being extremely intricate in their cuts and very difficult to alter), but even so, I can't imagine a seamstress working on a size 16 dress and having to do so many alterations. You'll definitely need at least 3 fittings to get the proportions right.
 

d-girl1011

super stylin' nerd
Mar 2, 2009
1,096
4
Great White North
It will not look the same after altering it that many sizes and it will cost a fortune to do. Save your money and buy something that fits to begin with