Being petite doesn’t mean that you are restricted to shopping in the petite section.  There are a lot of stores who offer non petite clothes starting from a size 6.  For more details visit the Petite Friendly Brands page.owever to ensure a good fit whether you’re buying petite or non petite clothing, it’s best to make friends local clothing alterations store/dressmaker.  Below are my Top 10 alterations tips:

  1. Ask your family & friends.  They will only recommend those who they are happy with.
  2. Do a search on the internet.  Simply type something like “clothes alterations” followed by your local town.
  3. Use your local telephone directory.
  4. Check out your local dry cleaners.  Some do offer an alterations service but they may be limited on the alterations that can do.  E.g. shortening trousers and sleeve lengths.
  5. Contact them to find out their prices and what they can alter.  Clothing alterations stores usually charge more and operate an open door policy.  i.e. You can usually just turn up and they will pin your clothes to your specification.  However a local dressmaker who is working from home are usually a little cheaper and require you to make an appointment.
  6. Ask how long it will take to make the alteration.  This will depend on their work schedule and what type of alteration is required.  Some alteration stores offer a 1 hour alterations service.  If someone is working from home, it’s normal to expect your alterations to be available within a week.
  7. Take an easy, inexpensive item of clothing for them to alter.  I usually start with shortening a pair of trousers.
  8. Check that you’re happy with their pinning.  For example, when shortening a pair of trousers, it’s easy for them to take a pin out and re-pin it to make the hem longer or shorter.  However, once it has been shortened, it’s harder for them to make the hem longer.  This stage is critical and I would advise you not to rush this part of the process.
  9. Try on the item that has been altered and inspect their handiwork.  For example, are the trousers/sleeves the right length, has the stitching been sewn on straight, is the  material pulling slightly?
  10. If you’re unhappy with your alteration for any reason, let them know so that they can make any necessary changes.  This will usually be done for you at no extra cost.

Finding a good alterations store/dressmaker can be difficult.  I use the following alterations store in Manchester if I need a simple alteration such shortening trousers.

Stiches in Manchester City Centre.  They also have stores in Birmingham & Leeds.

Reeds in the Trafford Centre, Manchester

For more complex work, I use a local dressmaker who works from her own home.

Can you recommend a good clothing alterations store/dressmaker in your area?


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