When it comes to wedding dress alterations, we’re no strangers to basic design changes and moving a dress down a size or two—in fact, sometimes we think we’ve done any alteration you can imagine! But every once in a while, we get to take on a challenge we haven’t seen before. 

In June, we resized a wedding gown all the way down from a size 30 to a size 16. It was quite an assignment! 

Our bride, Callie, lived in California, but planned to buy a dress in Wichita while she was home visiting family. She prescheduled an alterations appointment with us for that same weekend because we’ve done formal alterations for her several times before. Her plan was to leave the dress with us, but she wasn’t going to be able to try it on again until she was in town the week of her Wichita wedding. We assured her when she booked that would not be a problem, and that we would do any last minute adjustments during her wedding week. Everything was supposed to go smoothly, but Callie fell in love with a wedding dress that the boutique she visited only had in a size 30. The dress would need to be taken in more than 10 sizes to fit her perfectly, but Callie didn’t know exactly how extensive the alterations would be when she bought the dress.

When Callie came to us for her alterations appointment the day after buying her dress, she was shocked to see how big the dress really was without it being clipped to her size. There was more than a foot of extra fabric around her waist and bust, so she was quite concerned about whether the lace design and proportions would be right after sizing it down so much.

As stressful as the whole situation was for Callie...

... I was personally excited by the challenge. The most I had taken in a dress prior to this one was two sizes, and even Alicia had never sized a dress down more than eight to ten inches. After thinking through how I was going to make it happen, I was eager to get started.

When doing bridal alterations, our goal is always to make the dress look like it was custom from the start. This means separating the layers of the dress and altering each one individually before putting the dress back together. In Callie’s case, I had to cut fabric out of each seam before rebuilding the dress. And let me tell you, cutting fabric out of a wedding dress felt SO wrong! After doing the size alterations, I started replacing the lace to really make all the changes unnoticeable.

To help ease her fears about the alterations, we set up a virtual checkpoint via FaceTime so she could see how her dress was progressing. She was so happy after seeing her dress during our video call that she couldn’t stop smiling!

Callie had already placed a lot of trust in us when she only planned for two total fittings before her wedding, and it took extra confidence to stick with her plan when she realized how intense the alterations would really be. After all of the alterations were complete, Callie’s dress ended up being 18 inches too big for her. We made her wedding gown 18 inches smaller and it was all worth it, because her dress turned out so beautiful. 

So, future brides

Let this adventure show you that we can handle whatever alterations you need! Nothing is too big for us to handle, and nothing is more exciting than a challenge. 

January 05, 2023