Deal Diva: What to know about prom dress alterations

Updated: Mar. 20, 2019 at 7:32 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – It’s an exciting time of year for many high school girls as they shop for the perfect prom dress.

For parents, it’s about finding the dress that makes her smile, but also stays within the budget.

Michelle James, a fashion designer in Murrells Inlet, said there’s a lot more to prom dress shopping than just buying gowns and dresses.

“When you have a dress to be altered from the top to the bottom and each of those is a cost,” James said.

James said parents should know that alterations is a big part of prom preparations, and it should be a part of the budget.

“Usually it’s just the hem that needs to be altered and anywhere from $100 to $200 for the hems of a prom dress and it depends on how many skirts are on that dress. You can have up to four layers that need to be altered,” James said.

So be sure to look for a dress that fits you as well as possible.

Next, check the zippers, snaps, does it have beads or is it lace.

“See how often that dress has been tried on, because once you get that dress out the store, there are always alterations because the fabric stretches,” James said.

Also, don’t wait until the last minute.

“A month out, or two months out… two weeks sometimes it’s really not enough time for alterators to do the dress, because you’re not the only dress in the shop,” James said. “You are going to pay extra, and you really don’t want anyone to rush your dress in alterations.

She said also use reputable alteration shops and said don’t be afraid to look at smaller retail shops for that special prom dress.

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