How Many Sizes Can a Dress Be Taken In


We answer: how many sizes can a dress be taken in? Whether it's wedding dress alterations, evening dress alterations or little black dress alterations.

How Many Sizes Can a Dress Be Taken In

In the past bespoke clothing was the best way to get perfectly fitting garments. That's where tailors and seamstresses came in.

Now fashion designers create amazing clothes that are re-imagined season after season. This is how ready-to-wear collections became the go-to choice.

Ready-to-wear, however, by definition needs to fit as many body types as possible. This, however, doesn't have to stop you buying that dress that's not in your size.

There are many different types of dress alterations and tailoring that can give you the perfect fit. So we're here to answer: how many sizes can a dress be taken in?

A dress can be taken in a maximum of two sizes (8cm) and likewise it can be taken out by two sizes. This includes the bust, waist and hips and keeping the original cut. See this size guide for dimensions.


Dress Alterations

London Fitting Rooms complete dress alterations so the appearance is as original (unless the client specifies otherwise). This means matching the pattern and placement of the dress.

Dress alterations can include taking in the bust, waist and hips. It can also mean reducing sleeves and straps. We also shorten hems and take in the back, narrow shoulders and widen all of the above.

We can then go beyond alterations by looking into the pattern and re-thinking the garment entirely. We also determine how to keep the balance of the clothing.

London Fitting Rooms can achieve this as a couture alterations specialists in high end bespoke alterations. We assess on a case by case basis to fulfil our clients needs.

For example, for one client we took two small Jasper Conran dresses and recreated the pattern. That way we could make a bigger one.

A unique clothing alterations opportunity involved a beaded Valentino evening gown with a fitted top to be taken out 40cm. The voluminous layered skirt allowed us to achieve this wonderful challenge.

One size is 4cm so we cut panels from the many layers for the extra fabric. We created two triangles that we inserted at the back of the top on both sides of the zip and reapplied the beading.

We finally stitched them back together which had less volume but left our work invisible. When we do big changes like this it requires four to five fittings. Considering wedding dress alterations are usually three, this is a lot. Yet, the end result is worth it.

Here's some of the dress alterations currently taking place in our studio.

Rachel Gilbert Gown

This gorgeous Rachel Gilbert gown has had its straps shortened into the waist at the back. The hem has also been shortened from the waist.

Jenny Packham Dress

This Jenny Packham floral dress has beautiful blue petals that require special attention during tailoring and alterations. The final effect will leave our work invisible.

We lifted the shoulders and took in the side seams. We're now shortening the hem all around and the lining according to the original.

Dior Dress

We let out the bust of this Dior little black dress with a tack fitting. This allows the client to choose whether to keep or reverse any changes.

We also lifted the shoulders and shortened the straps, took in the outer-body and the tulle at the waist. Then we took in the centre-back through the embellishments.

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