Adventures in Alterations: Slimming a Skirt

When I first thought about altering this LOFT skirt, I tinkered with the ideas of shortening it, slimming the sides, or even getting the waist taken in so it sat higher on my waist. I wasn’t quite sure what it needed, but I liked the skirt enough to see what my tailor could do. Here is the skirt before alterations:

See it altered after the jump.


I told my tailor all my ideas about the skirt, and she quickly said, “No, no, no. It needs to be slimmed, but that’s all it needs.” I reiterated my concern with the length because, well, I’m short, and all I ever hear is how petite women should wear shorter skirts.

And then my tailor said something to me that I rarely ever hear…but come to think of it…has happened before with similar length skirts and dresses:

She said I looked tall!

What?!

I was reminded of Petite Asian Girl’s skirt length post, and I thought that maybe I need to revisit that, and seriously take some measurements. Maybe my leg proportions work well with longer skirt lengths, and here I’ve been shortening everything all these years! Hmmm…maybe a future post?

Anyways, here is the skirt after alterations, with just a simple slimming. Much better, hmm?

I tried to wear the same outfit and make the same pose. Kinda close right?

Cost of alteration: $20

 

By tapering the skirt, it follows the lines of my body better, and gives me a more feminine shape. My tailor took the skirt in along the side seams from the bottom of the hip down, which you can see in the photo below:

 

This is a very simple alteration, that can make a big difference in the way a garment looks. As a matter of fact, it made me look critically at a few other skirts I have in my closet that might look ten times better after the same alteration. I think my tailor will be seeing me again very soon…

16 Comments

  • Reply June 14, 2010

    thesmallone

    Good to know. I often try things on and feel like I look like a child trying on a grown ups clothing, maybe slimming some of these skirts/dresses would fix that. The skirt definitely looks more in proportion after the alteration. Less excess fabric, which is often my problem with clothing.

  • Reply June 14, 2010

    PetiteAsianGirl

    Maybe I am blind but I don't see a difference between the before and after pics…but I trust your tailor's judgment and the difference is probably much more evident in person. I think I'm just used to getting all my pencil skirts tailored to sit higher up on the waist and to be even more tapered, but like you mentioned, what looks best differs for every body type!

  • Reply June 14, 2010

    Really Petite

    How interesting, I didn't see much of a difference either but you def look tall in this skirt! I'm debating on tailoring my new Theory skirt but after some feedback- it's just too much of a pain:(

  • Reply June 14, 2010

    PetiteXXS

    I think if after staring at it closely… I do see a little difference. I think because you're short-waisted, you can still manage to look tall with a skirt that sits lower, but it's harder for me to pull that off without looking dumpy and making my legs look even shorter.

    Btw did you return the purple Ann Taylor print top to Westside Pavilions store by any chance? I was there yesterday and almost gasped when I saw a 00P hanging on the rack… almost tried it on (I have the 0P) but didn't have time.

  • Reply June 14, 2010

    Alterations Needed

    PAG & RP – Yeah, the difference isn't earth shattering, but it's definitely there. I see it, but maybe my vision is biased because I've seen it in real life. Photos don't always capture everything unfortunately.

    Pre-alterations, the skirt had a boxyness that wasn't very flattering. Now I look in the mirror and think, "Wow, this skirt looks great!"

  • Reply June 14, 2010

    Alterations Needed

    PetiteXXS – Yup. I really do prefer having bottoms sit lower because I'm short-waisted. I lose my torso when things come up too high.

    LOL – Yes, that was my print top at Westside Pavillion. How funny you found it! That's where I return all my AT stuff, so now you know my secret and can snatch up any P00/PXXS stuff I return.

  • Reply June 14, 2010

    Bianca

    Skirt is beautiful! She did a wonderful job with the alterations, I can see how nicely it skims now! And she is right, that is a great length for you with the slimming.

  • Reply June 15, 2010

    Susan

    i've done the exact same thing with an old banana republic skirt i had! i had it in a pile to give to good will but recently took a sewing class. tapering the bottom made a huge difference. i think maybe your pics don't quite do justice to the alteration because your left knee is stretching the skirt?

  • Reply June 15, 2010

    HM63

    I agree with PetiteXXS about being short-waisted and wearing skirts lower. I am short-waisted as well and wear my skirts just at or slightly below my belly button. I look lopsided if I pull them up to my true waist.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    HM63

    I agree with PetiteXXS about being short-waisted and wearing skirts lower. I am short-waisted as well and wear my skirts just at or slightly below my belly button. I look lopsided if I pull them up to my true waist.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Bianca

    Skirt is beautiful! She did a wonderful job with the alterations, I can see how nicely it skims now! And she is right, that is a great length for you with the slimming.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Susan

    i've done the exact same thing with an old banana republic skirt i had! i had it in a pile to give to good will but recently took a sewing class. tapering the bottom made a huge difference. i think maybe your pics don't quite do justice to the alteration because your left knee is stretching the skirt?

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    PAG & RP – Yeah, the difference isn't earth shattering, but it's definitely there. I see it, but maybe my vision is biased because I've seen it in real life. Photos don't always capture everything unfortunately.

    Pre-alterations, the skirt had a boxyness that wasn't very flattering. Now I look in the mirror and think, "Wow, this skirt looks great!"

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    PetiteAsianGirl

    Maybe I am blind but I don't see a difference between the before and after pics…but I trust your tailor's judgment and the difference is probably much more evident in person. I think I'm just used to getting all my pencil skirts tailored to sit higher up on the waist and to be even more tapered, but like you mentioned, what looks best differs for every body type!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    thesmallone

    Good to know. I often try things on and feel like I look like a child trying on a grown ups clothing, maybe slimming some of these skirts/dresses would fix that. The skirt definitely looks more in proportion after the alteration. Less excess fabric, which is often my problem with clothing.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Really Petite

    How interesting, I didn't see much of a difference either but you def look tall in this skirt! I'm debating on tailoring my new Theory skirt but after some feedback- it's just too much of a pain:(

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