Finding your dream dress is the ultimate goal, but there’s no point in having the perfect dress if it doesn’t fit you perfectly on the wedding day, right? This is where a dress fitting comes in!

When you go wedding dress shopping, you are heading into those boutiques with an open mind; you enter not quite knowing what you will like, and you emerge in a buzz of excitement at having just chosen THE dress!

However, your dress fitting gives you the opportunity to try on your gown with your head on straight and completely in the zone. It is then that you really begin to picture the dress in the setting – will it trail behind you as you walk up the aisle, will it flow in the breeze as you walk towards the flower-adorned gazebo, will you wear heels or flat shoes with it, what accessories will you wear with it, and so on…

There’s a lot to think about, but there’s also lots that can be done by a professional seamstress if you aren’t 100% satisfied.

To ensure that you get the most out of your fitting, we suggest that you take any accessories with you, along with your wedding shoes (if possible) and a friend or family member who can offer advice, take photos and generally help whilst you get measured up.

Different types of wedding dress alterations

Wedding dress alterations can help to tailor your dress to you but it’s also wise to anticipate any body changes. Remember, though, it is not wise to set yourself an unrealistic goal and struggle to fit into your gown on the day so be sure to talk over any anticipated weight changes at your fitting.

If you are unsure what exactly a seamstress can do with your dress, well here are just a few examples…


Naturally, dressmakers will design their dresses with taller women in mind, in the knowledge that smaller ladies can have theirs shortened (it’s not quite as straightforward to add material as it is to take it away!). Hemming is the process of taking up the length of the dress which is best left to a pro, especially if the dress has a train or lace material.


Most wedding seamstresses will offer detailing if this is something of interest to you. You might like to add sequins, beading or perhaps something sentimental to your bridal gown, like having the date of your wedding sewn into the material.

Taking the dress in/out

All bodies are different, so it is only natural that one dress does not fit all. In fact, most brides will have their dress taken in or out accordingly to suit their shape (this could be to make adjustments around the bust, waist and hip areas).

Expectant brides may need to schedule additional fittings to enable the growing bump to be measured, and likewise, if you are on a weight-loss mission, then an extra fitting might be necessary.

Strap amendments

As before, dressmakers will offer a standard-length strap but this may be too long or short for you. Your wedding seamstress will be able to alter the straps on your dress to make it more comfortable.

Altering the neckline/back

It’s quite common for brides to love a dress, but not like its neckline or back. It is possible to alter the neckline or the back of the dress to create more or less of an impact.

Wedding Dress Alterations FAQs

Do I pay for dress alterations?

Alterations are not normally included when you purchase a bridal gown, however, your bridal boutique may have an in-house seamstress who will perform your fitting. If not, you can head to a professional seamstress for a measure up.

How many wedding dress fittings do I need?

Most brides will have one to two fittings, depending on how far away the wedding day is. A third fitting might be necessary if there are any significant changes, such as weight gain or loss.

When should I go for my wedding dress fitting?

If you only plan to have one fitting, then you are best to arrange this fairly close to the wedding day to ensure that your measurements are as accurate as can be. Of course, your seamstress will need time to make the necessary adjustments so it’s wise to discuss their availability with them and set out a plan of action.

Strap amendments

As before, dressmakers will offer a standard-length strap but this may be too long or short for you. Your wedding seamstress will be able to alter the straps on your dress to make it more comfortable.

What if I don’t know what size I’ll be on my wedding day?

As previously mentioned, if you are expecting your body to change before the big day, then don’t let this put you off your wedding dress and going to fittings. A seamstress can explain to you what type of alterations can be made to suit your changing shape.