A case for finding a forever seamstress

I always read the reviews before making an online purchase, especially if it's a place I haven't ordered from before and I'm unsure of their sizing.  The number one reason for negative reviews and returns is poor fit.  However, sometimes the only way to find the right fit is to have a professional nip and tuck it in all the right places, perfectly fitting to your unique body.

No two bodies are 100% the same.  We should never expect that every item of clothing in our size is going to fit perfectly.  And don't even get me started on how sizing is dramatically different depending on the brand.  I'll save that for another day.  My goal with this post is to convince you to stop returning clothing you love and find a tailor who will give you your best fit.  Celebrate your unique shape and size with clothing that just fits. 

Consider the price of altering pre-purchase.  Is it worth it?


If you're spending a lot of money of something quality, you should get a perfect fit! On the other hand, consider the alteration costs in the total price to decide if it's worth it.  I'm a sucker for a deep discount like this floral dress, but it was final sale.  I knew I was getting a quality piece for a fraction of the original price so I didn't mind paying the extra money to have it tailored, especially because I couldn't return it.  This dress was a bit big in the bust and the waist, but I was hellbent on wearing it on my Punta Can trip.  There was no time to tailor it, so I added a belt for better waist definition and tightened the adjustable straps to mask the ill-fit.  This worked for as a short-term plan, but the best-possible fit meant taking this to a tailor for a little taking in.   

Wear the right bra

My strapless bra fits differently than my everyday bra.  A strapless bra just can't offer the same level of support, but if you find one with a thick band and a good fit, you can still feel contained and supported.  For dresses that require a strapless bra, I wear it for the fitting to get the best sizing and altering.  When I'm getting ready to wear this for real, there won't be any surprises on how it fits since I'm wearing all the same undergarments during alterations.


Bring the right shoes

Always bring the exact footwear you plan to wear with the items your having altered.  While I plan to wear these pants with multiple pairs of shoes, they will all be with heels of a similar height, so I brought this brown pair for the fitting (of course I already had the outfit planned ahed of time!). It's rare I find a pair of pants that aren't too long on me.  When the butt and hips fit well and the length is the only issue, they are a perfect candidate for tailoring.  Even in heels, a good five inches were taken off these pants.  They went from cleaning the floor to my perfect length with just a simple and inexpensive hem.


Leave the tags on

If you’re unsure if an item is tailor-able, leave the tags on when you take it to the seamstress. Have a conversation and get a price estimate to decide if it’s worth it. You can still decide to take it back if it's not! That was the case for this magenta jumpsuit. The bottom fit well but he top was very baggy and gapping in the back because I’m so short-waisted. I'm no expert, but I thought this was a complex piece that would require a lot of work to fit properly.  Turns out, it was a simple move of a closure on the back to get the fit I was looking for. The piece I thought was the biggest fix ending up costing less than both the dress and pant alterations!  Tags off! This is a keeper.

magenta jumpsuit back view edited.jpg

These easy tip and tricks can turn a meh alteration into a great one.  However, not all tailors do top-quality work.  When you find one that does, stick with them! I've gotten to the point where my seamstress asks about weddings I've attended, ensuring I was happy with a past dress she altered.  Finding your forever tailor is so worth it to look your best and feel you comfiest in your clothes.  No more disapointing returns; only perfect fits! 

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