You’ve got the gown, but now you need to make sure it fits perfectly. After all, you want to look your best, right? We sat down with the ultimate expert, Julie Sabatino, aka The Bridal Stylist, to get her take on wedding dress alterations and everything you need to know.
IN-HOUSE TAILORING PREFERRED
First off, Julie strongly suggests getting your gown from a salon that provides the tailoring. Salons and their staff know their own product best and understand how to make the proper adjustments. “Additionally, you have recourse if it’s not done correctly.” But if you get your gown elsewhere, most likely, the salon will have a go-to alteration specialist they can refer you to, who they have been using for a while.
TIMELINE & NUMBER OF APPOINTMENTS
“In general, allow 2 months for wedding dress alterations. You can allow a bit more time, maybe 10 weeks, should you be using an outside alterations person, but 2 months is a good estimate.” Julie also advises brides to be at their “wedding weight” at their 1st fitting, because drops in weight definitely affect tailoring. Many brides tend to lose weight right before the wedding, and this doesn’t help when it comes to ensuring your gown will fit perfectly.
Also, note that “It’s hard to envision what your gown will look like on you until the 2nd fitting. Only then do you start to see how it will really look like on you,” Julie says. So be patient, and note that it will come together. “Most people have 3 appointments, occasionally 4, and the final fitting is usually about 10 days before the wedding.”
WHAT TO BRING
Of course, you’ll want to bring the right undergarments and shoes. But how do you know which ones? “Talk to your salon or seamstress, whoever is doing your alterations, as they usually know the right type of corset, strapless bra, or Spanx to recommend,” Julie advises. “Touch base with your fitter in advance of your alteration appointment because they tend to have preferred brands or styles.”
If you don’t know exactly which shoes you’ll be wearing by your 1st wedding dress alterations fitting, “at least commit to the heel height, so hems can be adjusted correctly. Whatever you do, don’t suddenly change from a high heel to a platform, because that will change everything with alterations,” warns Julie.
For more on what to bring, Julie has a list of wedding fashion fitting essentials that you can find on Amazon, here.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU DON’T LIKE SOMETHING
Don’t be shy. You want to make sure you’re not a Bridezilla, but you should speak up if something’s bothering you at a fitting. You want to feel your best, and look your best, so if something just isn’t sitting well, let the fitter know. And the sooner you bring it up, the better.
For more tips on Everything to Expect at your 1st Fitting, check out Julie’s Podcast, with an episode that breaks it all down here.
THE SAMPLE SIZE SOLUTION
Julie also just released “The Sample Size Solution“, which is “a solution to modify a wedding dress sample so that any bride, regardless of their shape or size, can try it on.” So if you’re a curvy bride, have a tiny figure, or a salon doesn’t offer a sample in your size, this will help you see yourself in your dream dress!
About Julie Sabatino
Julie Sabatino has been styling brides since 2004. Her sense of style, knowledge of the market, contacts in the industry and overall kind demeanor and expertise have been pleasing brides all over the world as she helps them express themselves through their fashion and accessories choices.