Much like at-home hair color, unless you have some sort of training, it’s best to leave altering your clothes to the professionals. Take the washing instructions “handle with care” to the next level and hand your garments over to a talented tailor for everything from alterations to transformations. Not convinced? Here are 5 reasons to befriend your local alterations specialist.
1. Something is Only as Nice as it Looks on You
A garment may look beautiful on the hanger, but resemble a potato sack on you. Consider bringing it to your tailor to see if there is a way to “make it work.” Changing a hem or letting out a seam might make all the difference. The more familiar you get with your tailor, the more you’ll know what can and cannot be done, as well as how much certain alterations will cost. Remember, even the best alterations specialists aren’t magicians; they can only work with what is there.
2. Fashion isn’t Forever
Trends come and go, but that doesn’t mean you have to say goodbye; your tailor’s expertise will allow them to see what can be done to change a garment. Whether it’s new buttons or removing sleeves, you have options. Share what you like about the garment, and why, and see how they can update it.
3. You Sometimes Leave Things to the Last Minute
This isn't a promise on behalf of your tailor, but once you’ve established a relationship, they may be willing to do you the occasional favor. While it’s best not to make on-the-spot alterations a habit (it might cost extra for a rush job), being a loyal customer can have its rewards.
4. Rescue and Repair
There are some items that we just can’t bear to part with, no matter how badly worn. Rather than retiring one of your favorites, see if it can be saved. Worn elbows can be patched, lining can be replaced, and a stain may even be hidden by a dye job. Whatever you need, your tailor will likely have access to the supplies and the know-how to complete the repair.
5. Measure for Measure
Online shopping is convenient, but return policies can be strict, so know your proper measurements. Have your tailor measure your bust, waist, hips, and inseam, then keep those measurements on hand. Knowing measurements can also make it easier when ordering bridesmaid dresses, which always seem to be a size (or four) too large, even if you had your measurements taken on the spot. Besides, while a good tailor will make the dress fit, a great tailor will make the dress look like it was made for you.