How much did your alterations cost?

Hello Brides!

So, I found my dress! Hooray!

I'm now looking at a seamstress to have it altered. I bought it as a sample dress and it needs to be taken in by approx two sizes, shortened, and preferably have a sweet heart neckline added (it's currently straight across).

The seamstress they recommended looks amazing but she has estimated it will approximately £400 to do the alterations! Does this sound expensive to you?? The dress is lace and quite intricate, but a fairly standard fishtail / strapless design.

Failing that, can anyone recommend a London seamstress??

Thank you! :-)










  • elsyelsy Posts: 533

    Firstly, congratulations on finding your dress!

    It's hard to tell as I didn't have mine taken in at all but I paid £175 for mine to be shortened and to have the neckline adjusted. It didn't sit flush so she had to fiddle around with it. My dress was lace and like yours, quite intricate. I went to one of my fittings and all of the lace along the bottom one my dress had been cut off and was just attached at the back so that she could alter the length properly. 

    I don't know whether lace dresses cost more to alter giving the intricacy of them but I like to tell myself that they do. 

    Just to add, I'm not London based. Mine was all sorted just outside of Lincoln. 

  • MrsE2016MrsE2016 Posts: 1,209 New bride

    Wow London is expensive! 

    I bought a sample had my dress taken in at least two sizes, length shortened, neckline changed from straight to sweetheart, had the shape changed slightly & made the lace sleeves removable. I paid less than a third of what you've been quoted. My dress was a lace Pronovias dress & I had 7 fittings 😳

    The seamstress did an incredible job & I feel like I should have paid a lot more! 

  • It doesn't sound horrific for London but on the edge of a bit much. I've been quoted about £200 to bring my ballgown in a a size (or 2 depending on how the diet goes) and shorten is a fair bit (I'm only 5'3). And my seams would be a lot shorter than on a fishtail gown, so I would expect yours to be more than that just because you've got 3 times the length of seam to alter. Plus a bit more for the neckline. So I don't think it sounds outrageous. Unfortunately, London is just painfully expensive! You might be better to find somewhere that offers an alterations package, so you can get it all done for less? It always seems more when they add each thing individually. 

  • bella2015bella2015 Posts: 1,903 New bride

    Sounds expensive to me!! I had a lot of alterations done to my dress (was 2 sizes too big) so needed bust, hips, waist taken in, the illusion neckline lowering, the sleeves moved, a huge amount cut off the hem and also I had the train shortened and a diamante belt added. I had 3 fittings and all of this was under £100. My dress was lace and tulle, by Pronovias.

    I would say to look for a few more quotes before you commit.

  • HailsHails Posts: 2,455

    Whereabouts in London are you? I'm north east and know a good seamstress with lots of experience in bridal.

  • ClipClopClipClop Posts: 36

    Thank you so much for your responses, Ladies :-)

    Funnily enough, my dress is also Pronovias! (Sorry, I probably should have said that to start with). It's a relief to hear that you paid less for it, although I agree for London I'm going to be paying extra. 

    It's just such a risk as I obviously don't want it to be badly done, but I think I'm definitely going to look around a little.

    Hails - I'm in North London and happy to travel, I would be very grateful if you could message me your recommendation :-)

    Thanks so much again, and I'm delighted to hear that all your alterations went well and you'll be feeling beautiful!






  • ClipClop Hi!

    Where was that 1st recommendation for? I'm also in North London and struggling to find somewhere and I only have 8 weeks left!

    Any London recommendation welcome! I don't really have time to travel too far so anywhere I can get to on a tube (anywhere in London!)

    Thank you! x

  • HailsHails Posts: 2,455

    Hi I recommend sue's sewing in Chingford.


  • Jenni8Jenni8 Posts: 3,201

    Just to give an alternative viewpoint - my alterations are costing £470. I admit that the work that needs doing is different from you, but just wanted to let you know that sometimes they are more - though I 100% agree you should shop around, hopefully Hails' recommendation will work out!

    So I have a dropped waist ball gown and am getting the bust taken in (significantly), waist and hips out marginally. Hem taking up, godets in the skirt to allow for a wider underskirt to make it fuller. Then a crinoline ribbon put in around the train as the material is chiffon and gathers but I want it to hold some shape when I walk around, and as it is a sample some repairs (x1 button missing and x1 hole). I am getting this work done at the bridal store I bought my dress, which is a very high-end store in one of the most expensive areas in London. I did take the dress to 3 places nearer to where I am getting married and for the same work got quotes of £300-350, but two of them I wouldn't have trusted as they didn't give a great impression, and one of them I would have but hers was the highest quote and my mother persuaded me that for the sake of £120 I should stick with the shop I am 5 mins drive from, and very confident will do a great job and not rest until it is perfect.

    I agree with the above point that as your fitted portion of the dress is a lot longer than a ball gown, this will inevitably take more time and cost more, and also if there is heavy beading or lacing. I hope you get some luck shopping around.

  • ClipClopClipClop Posts: 36

    Thank you so much, Hails! And Rosie - i've just sent you a message :-)

    Thanks also Jenni for your very fair input. It does make sense that it would take so much work and time, and I know exactly what you mean about spending extra for someone you trust - it's just not worth thinking about what could go wrong! Your dress sounds amazing by the way!



  • August18August18 Posts: 247

    I just got my dress, when purchasing i was given a sheet for alterations...  ouch!!!! im in Essex and my whole wedding appears to be based on London prices! I don't need much alterations just taken in slightly shorted 3ish inches and maybe a bra sewed in I think it's about 360... which on top of he price of the dress is crazy imo! I mean come on I don't even get my high street stuff altered here I am buying a dress I'm not allowed to take a photo of, I am unable to try on in my correct size before buying and then having to pay for alterations and wait 9 months just for it to arrive!!! Lol 



  • ClipClopClipClop Posts: 36

    Hi August, I know, I feel your frustrations completely. I'm sure there are some good reasons behind it but there's also a lot of bull**** in this industry!! I think that's why I'm trying to rebel a little and not buy into all the bells and whistles too much. At the end of the day, we'll hopefully be married by the end of the wedding regardless of whether I have spent my life-savings on extras or not :-).


  • Rosegold017Rosegold017 Posts: 476

    August18 I agree Essex does seem to be taken under the wing of London in terms of prices. Mine was £290 and I thought mine would be relatively easy. It was shortened a little but it is a tulle skirt so there was no intricate lace to get around. It was taken in a bit and a bustle added, and a belt fixed on. It does look so much better now though!

  • Emma681Emma681 Posts: 218 New bride

    I'm sorry to say this but I had my first fitting on Friday, and my alterations (whole mermaid gown taken in 2 dress sizes, stitch in the sweetheart to make it sit right, and bustling loop and button) are £85 by an experienced bridal seamstress. I am in Edinburgh... so I guess the problem is  The "London effect". It's really frustrating! Is there no chance of traveling just a bit out of London to get the work done? xx

  • Victoria197Victoria197 Posts: 722 New bride

    I live in the Cotswolds nowhere near London and we get stung on London pricing all the time. I am dreading how much mine will cos, will know next week.

  • A few ladies mentioned that they did alterations for much cheaper. Were those done in London or outside of London? I am based in London but willing to travel to wherever I can have my dress altered nicely at a reasonable costs. I was also quoted around £300-£400 in London! 

  • Hi, I know prices can be scary. I got a few quotes that made my hair fall out. Luckily my friend recommended Alterations Boutique in London. There based at 14 New Quebec Street W1H 7RS. I thought their fancy post code would mean the alterations would cost a fortune but surprisingly their prices were quite modest compared to a few quotes I got.

    Give them a try!

    Here is a link to their page.


  • I live in Manchester and bought a second hand dress. I had it taken in at the shoulders, bust & waist and up at the bottom. It was beaded tulle at the top with asilk chiffon layered skirt. This cost £140 and I was really happy with the work. I then had it specially dry cleaned for another £100 

  • MissSMissS Posts: 267 New bride

    Oh my gosh- I've got my first dress fitting on Saturday ( my wedding is in 3 WEEKS!) I wasn't expecting it to be anywhere near that! Fingers crossed I don't need a lot doing!

  • I am also looking for a seamstress and am going to use GoldenStitch in Golders Green I think.  

    Beware of Alterations Boutique in Marylebone - I went to see them a few weeks ago and had a really disappointing experience. They were rude and didn't instil confidence AT ALL. I would keep looking if I were you.  

  • Hi, That's interesting. You went all the way to Golders Green instead of Marylebone. Long way to go! If you are still searching for a seamstress why are you telling us you are going to Golden Stitch in Golders Green? It Sounds like a bit of promotion to me. Not suggesting you are a pretending to be a bride so you can promote a company but it does certainly sound that way.

    I am visiting Alterations Boutique based on a recommendation from Golden Sash Bridal. I purchased my dress from them and they sent me to them. I had a wonderful experience there and the staff were polite and professional with me. Seems a completely different experience to the one you had. 

    I suppose people should visit each business and see which they prefer. In my case I am glad I listened to the recommendation and visited Alterations Boutique.

    Here is a link to their site

    0207 724 4147



  • Em-Em- Posts: 2

    I can whole heartedly recommend the tailor that I used in Battersea. His name is Ameer and he runs Violet Dry cleaners on Queenstown Road. He is a very humble guy and a trained master tailor. I asked him to change the neckline on my wedding dress, which he did beautifully for under. A week later, while trying the dress on by myself at home (not a recommended activity!), I managed to get my zip stuck in the lace and ended up cutting the zip open with a pair of scissors. It was an absolute mess. I took it back to Ameer and he took the whole dress apart, in order to remove the zip, and replaced it before stitching the dress back together. It looked absolutely seamless, as though nothing had ever happened to the zip.

    All in all, he charged me under 100 pounds for the alterations, which I thought was incredibly reasonable. 

    Details below your reference:

    Violet Drycleaners

    57 Queenstown Road

    SW8 3RG


  • Harriet72 - I am definitely not promoting Golden Stitch, I live in North London so its just as convenient if not more so than Marylebone for me. 

    Alterations Boutique have done loads of fake comments on this board, its pretty transparent once you look at them. I would even hazard a guess that your own comment is such given its tone.

    I've just given my personal experience, they were very rude and I would never recommend them. 

    Anyway as it transpires, I am not completely happy with my experience so far at Golden Stitch either though they are 10000% more personable than the lady I dealt with at Alterations Boutique.

    For me, the search continues for the perfect London alterations.... has anyone used Elitealterations? They come out to do fittings at your home. I've put in an enquiry and they were recommended on LoveMyDress but interested if anyone has firsthand experience?

  • Julia83Julia83 Posts: 2


    Alterations Boutique were recommend to me by Golden Sash Bridal and I have had a wonderful experience with them. My Wedding Dress was altered to perfection and they were kind and helpful throughout.

    Julia x




  • Considering the cost of bridal gowns purchased from a specialist shop I find it offensive to have to pay through the nose (or purse) for alterations

    Just saying

  • I have been charged £150 and I haven’t even got my dress yet! They added the cost of alterations to the dress price and then charged 50% of the whole lot as deposit - is that normal?

  • I am in Hampshire and have paid just £60, to have the shoulders taken in, the corset taken out a bit (as was too tight) and a bustle (sp?) added to the train... my Seamstress is experienced and has done a fantastic job... maybe try looking a little outside London (we are only 40 mins away by train) x

  • Hello! Please could you share the details? Thank you!!
    Anxiousbride2 wrote (see post):

    I am in Hampshire and have paid just £60, to have the shoulders taken in, the corset taken out a bit (as was too tight) and a bustle (sp?) added to the train... my Seamstress is experienced and has done a fantastic job... maybe try looking a little outside London (we are only 40 mins away by train) x


  • OmRumOmRum Posts: 933 New bride
    Hails wrote (see post):

    Hi I recommend sue's sewing in Chingford.


    I know people who have used this alterations service and they have recommended her to me. She brought in my friend's wedding dress which apparently had corseting with lace all over it, so she sounds very competent! Unfortunately, her quote to me was too expensive (almost as much as the dress itself!), so I have gone for a place out of London.

  • LDCRFLDCRF Posts: 48

    I would try outside of the bridal seamstresses. I had mine taken up ALOT (I am only 5 foot!) all all the lace had to be handpicked and handsewn back on. I also had capped sleeves added. I had 3/4 fittings and it cost me £30. There wasn't the whole "experience" with champagne etc but I didn't mind for that price! I was quoted over £200 for the same thing at my bridal shop.

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