No tailor is going to admit that they do not know the art of alteration. So, the only way you’re going to find out is when the dress comes back looking terrible – not at all like how you imagined it! Often, the dress is beyond rescue and must simply be pushed to the inner recesses of the wardrobe.
A good dress alteration job essentially consists of three components:
- The skill of the tailor doing the job
- Whether the fabric may be subjected to alteration
- A knowledge of how the alteration can impact its overall proportion
The first component – a skilled tailor – is the most important component and will automatically take care of the remaining two components. For, a skilled tailor can give the right advice when it comes to the nature of the fabric and the impact of alteration on its overall proportion. In fact, a good tailor can go one step further and suggest different ways of alteration that can make the dress look just right on the wearer’s figure.
When choosing someone to alter a garment, it is necessary to look for the following:
- Experience: How many years of experience do they have in similar jobs? Altering a wedding gown is different from altering tees or jeans, and requires a different set of skills. Similarly, a tailor who works predominantly with men’s garments may not be the right person for altering women’s garments and vice versa. On the other hand, some tailors have a vast gamut of experience as they work with a large number of clients. Some are even affiliated with retail stores, which is proof enough of their versatility, experience and quality of service.
- Samples: As they say, the proof is in the pudding. Ask for a sample of their work and examine the quality of their work. You can also ask friends and colleagues for references. A great tailor will have a vast number of highly satisfied clients who are eager to vouch for the tailor’s quality of work.
- Cost: Simple alterations are typically inexpensive. These are alterations that you could perform yourself. On the other hand, alterations that require medium to high levels of skill require greater finesse and are therefore more expensive.