How Much to Alter a Wedding Dress?

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A wedding is probably the most memorable day in one's life and you will want to look the best on this day. You will obviously look for the best wedding dress. But finding the best bridal dress and the process is not that much easy. Alteration of the dress is probably the scariest part of wedding dress shopping. How much to alter the wedding dress, how long it takes, will it ruin the dress and so much confusion will occur.

The most common question that everyone faces while wedding dress shopping is how much will it take to alter the dress. It actually varies in many aspects. Most of the bridal dress designers follow a size chart to make the wedding dress. So alteration is a must if it doesn't fit you perfectly. 

Wedding Dress and Alteration

It is no wonder that you will want to look flawless on the most memorable day in your life. Buying the perfect wedding dress will seem tough to you as you are new to this. Many brides spend months hovering shop to shop to find the best dress. 

Purchasing the wedding will be a new experience for any bride as many of them are not familiar with this. There are many things and perspectives that may be unknown to you about the wedding dress. 

You may just think that it is pretty simple to buy a wedding dress. Just go to the shop and grab the one you like. In reality, it is not that easy. Yes, you can grab the dress you like and take it home for the occasion. But most of the shops will suggest you alter the dress. Because that is the only way to make the dress perfectly fit.

Why is Alteration Necessary? 

To make the best of your wedding day you will always want to look the best version of yourself. Every woman dreams of this day wearing a beautiful wedding dress. Undoubtedly you will want the best wedding dress for yourself. The dress needs to be precise on each detail. Alteration is one of the key factors that can make your dress the best. 

As we mentioned before, the dress may not always be of your size. Designers make wedding dresses according to specific size charts. The size chart may vary from place to place, brand to brand, and designer to designer. Size chart concludes bust size, waist size, and hips size. So a dress perfect for your size is pretty hard to find as size differs from person to person. 

So after choosing the dress you like, the sales associate will take your measures. After that, they will process your dress according to your measurements. 

You may ask why designers do not make dresses according to your size. Well, this will not allow them to produce a mass amount of gowns. Following a specific size chart enables them to produce mass dresses. So a wedding dress may not match your size. You should go for an expert seamstress. They are masters in alteration and will alter your dress as per your measurements. After all the process they will call you to say that your dress is ready. 

How Much To Alter a Wedding Dress?

When it comes to altering the wedding gown there are many options. There are many types of alteration you may go for. Also, how much the alteration will cost varies in what type of alteration you are doing. Let us have a glimpse at them:

Hemming (The Bottom Part) 

The length of your wedding dress needs to be as per your height. So you may need to hem the bottom part of your gown. You will not probably want your dress to be bigger than your size or even smaller. So hemming the dress will bring perfection to your dress. Hemming a wedding dress usually costs $150-$200 on average. 

Adjusting the Sides of the Dress

How width your dress will depend on your measurements. A seamstress will adjust the sides of your dress evaluating your size. This will add an extra $50-$100 to your cost. 

Adding Bra Cups

In terms of wedding dress, almost every bride wants bra cups to be added. This will pull out an extra $20-$40 from your pocket. 

The Bustle

If your wedding dress contains long and wide trains, it will require many bustle points. This will make the gown be able to lift off the ground. It is an important part of alteration in a wedding dress. You will have to pay $50-$150 for bustling your dress. It may vary depending on how many bustle points you want. 

Additional Works of Alteration and Their Costs 

  1. Adding Straps: $50-$250 (Depends on the complexity of the work)
  2. Shortening the Sleeves: $40-$80 per sleeve 
  3. Adding Sleeves: $200-$300
  4. Changing Neckline: $250-$400 (Depends on designs)
  5. Shortening the Train: around $250 
  6. Changing the Zipper into Corset: at least $150.

Alteration price may vary from shop to shop. It also depends on what type of alteration you are doing. For primary alteration, you will have to pay about $300-$600. The cost may increase if you are willing to do some additional work. This will then take the cost up to $1000 or more. 

Tips for Wedding Dress Alteration 

Maintain Schedule for Fitting 

You should intend to buy your wedding dress at least 8-10 months before the wedding day because it takes time to process the dress.  

Bring Necessary Accessories to Every Fitting 

It is important for you to bring necessary accessories like shoes, undergarments, etc to every fitting. 

Don't Worry About Too Many Alterations 

Some think the more you alter the dress the more it will ruin it. But it is not true. Alteration is a part of wedding gowns and there are professional seamstresses for this. Their expertise in work is unquestionable. 

FAQ about Wedding Dress Alteration 

How Many Fittings Should I Schedule? 

You may not remain the same in size till the wedding day. At Least 2-3 fitting schedules are a must to get the perfect dress.

How Much Should I Budget for Alteration? 

Generally, you should at least keep in mind a budget of around $500-$700 for standard wedding dress alterations. Some tailors offer a flat fee of around $600 or more for any changes you want to make. 

When Should I Go for the Last Fitting Appointment?

It is better if you schedule the last fitting at least 2 or 3 weeks before the wedding day. It will allow the seamstress to work with last moment details. 


Expert seamstresses will give their best so that you are looking the best in your wedding dress. Now you know how much to alter the wedding dress. We hope that this article will provide you clear thoughts about wedding dress alteration and price.