Thursday, April 5, 2012

It's Time for... ALTERATIONS!!!

As you know, Madeleine's Daughter is considered to be a "full service" bridal salon, which means that the experience doesn't stop when you've purchased your gown. Rather, you are our bride until the end and our alterations staff are committed to making your dress look flawless on your big day.


There's a lot to think about when it comes to alterations, but the first and sometimes most difficult part is scheduling. We have top notch seamstresses scheduled to conduct fittings nearly every day of the week during our peak wedding season. Most seamstresses conduct fittings at least two to three days per week. For example, Kathy does fittings on Mondays from 10-2 and on Thursdays from 4-8. So, if your seamstress is Kathy and you need to schedule a fitting, it's going to be on a Monday or a Thursday.

I know what you're thinking: "That's so rigid! Why can't I come on a Tuesday or a Friday or a Saturday? Why am I restricted to the two days that Kathy does fittings?" The answer is really simple: Kathy needs time to actually SEW the dresses she's pinned. If Kathy (or any seamstress) is asked to do fittings every day, then they simply would not have enough time to sew the dresses, too. In other words, we have to be respectful of the time she needs to complete all the alterations. The bottom line is that when you call to schedule your fittings, have a day and general time in mind for when it would be convenient for you to have those appointments. That way, if anything needs to be rescheduled, it's likely it would be rescheduled to a similar time on that same day of the week.

The next tricky thing about our schedule is that appointments are on a first-come, first-serve basis. So, in order to get the prime appointment times (evenings and weekends), you need to book well in advance. That means calling at least three or four months ahead. In other words, if your wedding is in August, that means your first fitting will be scheduled in May and that means you need to call us no later than February or March.
Once the scheduling is figured out, it should be smooth sailing to the end. You'll have at least three fittings and then a separate scheduled pick-up date. When you call to book your fittings, all the details will be explained to you, but in case you want to plan ahead, here are some do's and don't's :
DO go shoe shopping ahead of time. The heel height you select affects the hem and the bustle. If you don't have your shoes at your first fitting, the seamstress can't pin everything she needs to pin! 
DO make a separate appointment to shop for accessories like a veil or jewelry. Alterations appointments are 45 minutes or less, and we allocate all of that time to your seamstress.  
DO make sure you have the appropriate undergarments at all your fittings. We recommend a long-line bra for nearly all dresses. We also have spanx and petticoats available. When you come in to shop for accessories, your bridal consultant can help you find all the right undergarments, too.  
DO avoid bringing a large entourage to your fittings. Bring your mother and one or two bridesmaids to learn how to dress you and tie your bustle. Any more than that and the room will become very  crowded.  
DO plan ahead and allow extra time to drive here. Portsmouth is a popular destination for summer and traffic can get heavy.
DO call us if you are running late to any of your fittings. We may need to reschedule your appointment if it’s more than just a few minutes.  
DO keep in mind when rescheduling an appointment that you will be seeing the same seamstress at all your appointments and she will have certain days of the week when she is available to fit. Those days are not always flexible.  
DON'T wear any heavy make-up, creams or perfumes and DON'T get a spray tan right before your fitting- you don't want any of these things to rub off on your gown.  
DON’T be surprised if at your second fitting, your dress looks a little deconstructed. In order to properly alter the gown, our seamstresses need to take it apart a little bit first. Side seams may be open and hem lace may have been taken off at this point. This is normal!
DON'T stress out about your fittings- you are in very experienced and capable hands!

Visit our website and watch the alterations video here for even more information about your fittings.

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