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Can you alter a wedding dress by two sizes?

Are you in love with a wedding dress, but it just doesn’t quite fit you properly? The good news is that dress alterations can save the day! Whether you’re buying a sample dress off the rack, inheriting your grandma’s vintage gown, or you’ve lost a bit of weight since ordering your dress, alterations can make your perfect wedding dress fit your body like a glove. But can you alter a wedding dress by two sizes? Let’s dive into the details.

What Kind of Alterations Can Be Made to a Wedding Dress?

Wedding dress alterations can range from minor tweaks to major modifications. Here are some common types of alterations that can be made to a wedding dress:

Size Alterations:

Size alterations, as the name suggests, are adjustments to the dress’s size. They can be as simple as taking in the seams on the bodice or letting out the waistband. Bridal shop seamstresses usually recommend ordering a dress that fits the largest part of your body to ensure that there’s enough fabric to make alterations if needed.

Length Alterations:

Sometimes, a wedding dress is just too long or too short for your height. Length alterations can fix that, whether it’s hemming the dress’s bottom or altering the length of the sleeves or straps.

Design Alterations:

Design alterations are more complex and usually require extensive work to the dress’s structure or embellishments. They can include changing the neckline, adding sleeves, or removing intricate beading.

Can You Alter a Wedding Dress by Two Sizes?

The short answer is usually yes, you can alter a wedding dress by two sizes. Depending on the cut of the dress, the fabric, and the type of alteration needed, your tailor can take in or let out seams to adjust the dress’s size.

However, there are some factors to consider before assuming that you can alter a wedding dress by two sizes:

Type of Dress

Some dresses are easier to alter than others. A simple A-line dress is much easier to alter than a ball gown with intricate beading or lace details. Here are some types of wedding dresses and their alterability:

  • Simple, structured dresses: These dresses are usually the easiest to alter, as they have minimal embellishments or complex structures.
  • Stretchy dresses: Dresses made of stretchy fabric like jersey or spandex are also relatively easy to alter, as the stretchy material can accommodate some size adjustments.
  • Complex dresses: Dresses with intricate beading, lace, or boning can be difficult to alter without compromising the dress’s integrity.

Amount of Alterations Needed

Brides who need to go up two sizes are usually not as lucky as those looking to go down two sizes. Taking a dress out can result in seams that appear stretched or holes in the fabric if the seam binding has to be removed. If you want to go up two sizes, it’s best to order a new dress that’s in the size range you need.

Timing and Budget

Alterations can take time and money, so it’s essential to plan for them in advance. Alterations can take several fitting appointments, and the total cost can range from a few hundred to over a thousand dollars, depending on the type of work needed.

Tips for Altering a Wedding Dress

Here are some tips to consider when altering your wedding dress:

  • Work with an experienced seamstress who specializes in wedding dresses
  • Bring the shoes and undergarments you plan to wear on your wedding day to the fitting appointments
  • Alterations can take weeks or months, so plan accordingly and start early
  • Be realistic about the amount of alteration that can be made to your dress without compromising its integrity
  • Communicate your desired alterations clearly to your tailor and bring pictures if necessary
  • Be prepared to pay for alterations and include them in your wedding dress budget
  • Try on your wedding dress after alterations to ensure that it fits correctly and feels comfortable


In conclusion, you can usually alter a wedding dress by two sizes, but it depends on several factors like the type of dress, amount of alteration needed, and timing and budget. It’s essential to work with an experienced seamstress who specializes in wedding dresses and to plan for alterations in advance. With the right alterations, your wedding dress can fit perfectly and make you feel like a beautiful bride on your special day.


What is a size 12 wedding dress equivalent to?

When it comes to wedding dress sizes, it can be a bit tricky to determine what a size 12 is equivalent to in regular clothing sizes. Wedding dresses typically use a different sizing system than everyday clothing, with sizes ranging from 0 to 28 or beyond, depending on the designer.

To complicate matters further, each designer may use a different size chart, so it’s important to check the specific designer’s size chart before making any assumptions about what size you should order. Generally, a size 12 wedding dress from most designers will equate to a size 8 or 10 in street (or ready-to-wear) sizing.

It’s important to note that wedding dresses do tend to run smaller than regular clothing, so you may end up needing a larger size than you would typically wear. Additionally, alterations are almost always required to achieve the perfect fit, so don’t be discouraged if the dress you try on in-store doesn’t fit perfectly right off the rack.

The key to finding the perfect wedding dress size is to try on dresses in person and work with a professional who can help guide you through the sizing and alteration process. With some patience and a willingness to be flexible with sizing, you can find the perfect dress that will make you feel confident and beautiful on your big day.

How do you fix a wedding dress that is too big?

If you’re a bride-to-be, one of the most important things is choosing your dream wedding dress. However, even if you’ve had it fitted to your size, you might find that it’s still a little too big. But fear not, as there are several solutions to help fix this problem and make your dress fit you like a glove.

The first solution is to have your wedding dress altered by a professional. Find a skilled seamstress or tailor who specializes in wedding gowns. They can help take in the dress in all the right places, ensuring that it fits your body like a glove. If the dress is too big in the bust area, they can add cups to fill out the bustline. They can also adjust the waistline to ensure your dress is cinched in all the right places.

However, if you don’t have the budget to hire a professional seamstress or tailor, there are still ways to make your dress fit you perfectly. For instance, you can add a sash or belt to cinch the waistline. This will help adjust the dress to your body shape, making it look more fitted. You can also add straps or sleeves, which can help add structure to a dress that feels too big and creates a more secure and fitted feel.

Similarly, if your wedding dress is too big, you can consider wearing a comfortable corset underneath. A corset can help create a custom size for you and makes the dress feel more fitted. They not only support the bust and improve posture but also cinch the waist creating an hourglass body shape.

Fixing a wedding dress that is too big requires a little bit of patience and creativity. You can either hire a professional seamstress or tailor, add a sash or belt, add straps or sleeves, or wear a corset underneath the dress. The key is to find the right solution that best suit your wedding dress and your body type.

Can you make a dress bigger if its too small?

When shopping for clothing, it can be difficult finding the perfect size, especially since different brands have different size charts. You may find a dress that fits beautifully in one brand, but the same size in another brand may be too small. This can be frustrating, however, there is a solution to the problem. If a dress is too small, you may be able to make it bigger.

When a garment is too small, the first thing you need to do is assess how much extra fabric is available to work with. The extra fabric that extends past the seam is called seam allowance. Seam allowance is the distance between the seam line and the raw edge of the fabric and it indicates whether the garment can get any larger. Clothes are made with varying seam allowances, depending on the style and construction of the garment. If the garment has a generous seam allowance, then there is a good chance that it can be made bigger to fit your body.

Keep in mind that not all garments can be made bigger, especially if they are already at their maximum seam allowance. Also, the type of fabric used can impact the ability to make a dress bigger. For example, some stretch fabrics can be manipulated to fit the body better whereas non-stretch fabrics are more difficult to work with.

If there is extra room in the seam allowance, then the dress can be made bigger. The easiest way to let out a dress is to carefully unpick the stitching at the seam and add extra fabric to expand the size. This can be done by removing the stitches on the dress lining or facing, then on the outside of the dress. Once this is done, you can then add either more fabric or lace to the seam to expand the size.

Another way to make the dress bigger is to add panels of the same or similar fabric. The easiest option is adding panels to the side seams of the dress. This will give more width to the dress and will not disturb the overall look of the dress. This option is ideal when only a small amount of extra room is necessary.

Lastly, if you have some sewing skills, you can also consider resizing the dress by making pattern adjustments. The most common adjustment is adding a dart. A dart is a folded triangular shape that is sewn into the fabric to give shape to a garment. This will make the dress fit your body better while maintaining the original look of the dress.

Whether a dress can be made bigger depends on many factors. It is always best to consult with a professional dressmaker or tailor. They can assess the dress and determine the best method to apply for making it bigger.