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How long does it take to alter a bridesmaid dress?

If you’re a bridesmaid who’s been tasked with finding and altering your own dress for the wedding day, you might be wondering how long the alteration process will take. Alterations are an important part of ensuring that your dress fits you perfectly, so it’s important to factor in the time needed for alterations when planning your outfit. In this guide, we’ll discuss how long it typically takes to alter a bridesmaid dress and provide some tips for ensuring that your alterations are completed on time.

Factors That Determine Alteration Time

The amount of time required for alterations can vary depending on several factors, including:

1. The timing of your alteration appointment

The earlier you book your alteration appointment, the more likely you are to receive your dress on time. Ideally, you should schedule your alteration appointment at least two months in advance of the wedding to allow enough time for multiple fittings.

2. The complexity of the alterations

The more complex the alterations required, the longer it will take for your dress to be altered. For example, shortening a hemline or taking in a waistline can be completed relatively quickly, while reworking the entire bodice of a dress can take several weeks.

3. The availability of the seamstress or tailor

The availability of the seamstress or tailor can also impact how long it takes to alter your bridesmaid dress. If your chosen seamstress is busy during the wedding season, they may require more time to complete your alterations.

Typical Alteration Timeframes

On average, bridesmaid dress alterations typically take between two to four weeks to complete. However, the timing can vary based on the factors outlined above. Here’s a breakdown of the typical timeframe for various types of bridesmaid dress alterations:

Shortening a Hemline

If you need to shorten the hemline of your dress, this alteration can typically be completed in just a few days to a week.

Adjusting the Straps

Adjusting the straps of a dress can also be completed in just a few days to a week, assuming the seamstress or tailor has availability.

Taking in the Waistline

Taking in the waistline of a dress typically takes about a week to complete.

Altering the Bodice or Sleeves

If you need significant alterations to the bodice or sleeves of your dress, this can take several weeks to complete. Plan to schedule your appointments well in advance to ensure that your dress is ready on time.

Tips for Ensuring Timely Alterations

To ensure that your bridesmaid dress alterations are completed on time, follow these tips:

1. Book Your Alteration Appointment Early

As mentioned earlier, booking your alteration appointment as early as possible will help ensure that your dress is ready on time. Aim to schedule your appointment at least two months in advance of the wedding.

2. Choose the Right Seamstress or Tailor

Choosing a seamstress or tailor with plenty of experience in wedding dress alterations is key to getting your dress altered correctly and on time. Do your research and choose someone with a good reputation in your area.

3. Attend All of Your Fittings

Attending all of your scheduled fittings is important for ensuring that the alterations are progressing as planned. Try to be flexible with scheduling and attend all fittings promptly.

4. Communicate Clearly with Your Seamstress or Tailor

Clear communication is essential for ensuring that your dress alterations are completed to your liking. Be specific about what alterations you need, and communicate any changes or concerns throughout the process.


In summary, bridesmaid dress alterations can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks to complete, depending on the complexity of the alterations and the availability of the seamstress or tailor. To ensure that your alterations are completed on time, book your appointment early, choose the right seamstress or tailor, attend all fittings, and communicate clearly throughout the process. By doing so, you can ensure that your bridesmaid dress fits perfectly on the big day.


Do bridesmaids pay for their own dress alterations?

When it comes to wedding planning, there are many expenses to consider. The bride and groom often have to make tough decisions regarding what aspects of the wedding they can afford and what will have to wait. One question that often arises is whether the bridesmaids are responsible for paying for their own dress alterations.

Traditionally, it has been expected that bridesmaids will cover the cost of their own dress alterations . This includes any changes that need to be made to ensure that the dress fits properly and is comfortable for the bridesmaid to wear throughout the wedding ceremony and reception.

It is important to note that the cost of bridesmaid dress alterations can vary greatly depending on the nature of the alterations needed. Some alterations, such as hemming a dress or taking it in at the waist, can be relatively simple. Others, such as adding sleeves or adjusting the neckline, can be much more complex and costly.

The expense of bridesmaid dress alterations is often included in the overall cost of being a bridesmaid. This can include the cost of the dress itself, as well as any additional expenses such as shoes or accessories. It is important for brides-to-be to communicate clearly with their bridesmaids about what to expect in terms of expenses and to be mindful of the financial burdens their wedding may place on their friends and loved ones.

The decision of whether or not bridesmaids should pay for their own dress alterations is up to the bride and groom. Some couples are happy to cover these costs as a way of showing appreciation for their bridal party, while others may not have the budget to do so. Whatever the case, it is important for everyone involved to be transparent and upfront about their expectations to avoid any confusion or misunderstandings.

Is 6 weeks enough for wedding dress alterations?

When it comes to shopping for a wedding dress, there are few things more important than the fit. Regardless of how beautiful and expensive your dress may be, if it doesn’t fit you well, you won’t be feeling your best on the big day. Luckily, wedding dress alterations can solve many problems with fit and create the perfect look for your wedding. However, the process of alterations can be somewhat daunting, and many brides struggle to figure out how much time they need to allow for the process. So, is 6 weeks enough for wedding dress alterations?

In general, most bridal boutiques and alteration services recommend allowing around 6-8 weeks for your wedding dress alterations. This time frame gives you enough time to schedule your fittings, make any necessary changes and adjustments, and have your dress ready to go for your big day.

It is essential to understand that every bride’s timeline and dress fitting needs will be different. Some brides may require more extensive alterations, while others may need only minor adjustments. Therefore, it is crucial to book your first fitting appointment as soon as possible after purchasing the dress, as this will give you a better idea of how much time you may need to allow for the alterations.

Another factor that can affect the alteration process is the time of year. Wedding season can be quite busy, and sometimes, it can be challenging to schedule fittings at the perfect time. There may also be delays in shipping, which can impact your timeline. It is therefore advisable to plan ahead, allowing for any unforeseen circumstances.

6 weeks can be sufficient time for wedding dress alterations, but ultimately, it depends on the extent of the alterations required, the time of year and any unforeseen circumstances. It is best to be proactive and schedule your fittings as soon as possible to ensure that you have plenty of time to make any necessary changes and have your dress ready for your big day.

Can a size 14 dress be altered to a size 6?

The answer to the question of whether a size 14 dress can be altered to a size 6 is not a straightforward one. The success of such alterations depends on several factors, including the design of the dress, the materials used, and the specific measurements of the individual.

In general, it is easier to take in a dress than to let it out. Typically, a dress can be altered two sizes down and one size up without any significant problems. This means that if you have a size 14 dress and you want to alter it to fit a size 6, the alteration is quite drastic and complex.

If you need to take more than three sizes in or out, then the dress will need to be recut. This requires significant technical expertise and experience, and not all tailors would feel comfortable undertaking such a task.

Another aspect to consider is the design of the dress. Some dresses have complicated designs that may not lend themselves to alterations. For example, if the dress has a lot of beadwork or lace, it may be challenging to take it in or let it out without affecting the design and overall look.

Finally, it’s essential to consider the specific measurements of the individual. A size 6 person will have a significantly different body shape and dimensions than a size 14 person. Altering a dress meant for a size 14 person to fit a size 6 person may be challenging if the dress was designed to fit a different body type.

While it is possible to alter a size 14 dress to a size 6, it is a complex and challenging customization that requires the skills and expertise of an experienced tailor. The process may also be influenced by the design of the dress, the materials used, and the unique measurements of the individual. It’s crucial to consider all of these factors before deciding to alter a dress drastically.