A concierge's guide to vintage alterations in London
The concierges of world renowned London hotels Claridges and The Berkeley have divulged their secrets on where to find the best services for caring for your vintage garments. This article on vintage alterations is brought to you by the concierge of London 5 star hotel The Berkeley.
The one downfall of vintage clothing is that you are often unable to buy to size. However this does not mean you should pass up a beautiful item due to the fit; there are a whole host of services you can use to tailor your purchases to you. It is not only the fit that can be altered but the style.
If you know where to go items can be lengthened, shortened, dyed and more leaving you with a piece of clothing that is not only a one-off but has now been specifically tailored for you.
The London Fashion Workshop is a great place to start if you are looking for a good seamstress. Based in London’s Covent Garden you can book an appointment with a seamstress regarding any alterations you may need. With a whole team of professional seamstresses and tailors you can ask for anything from a full revamp of an item to a few minor alterations.
You can have a consultation either at their headquarters or if you prefer they can come to your home for a private fitting. They even offer a ‘modernisation’ service, so if you own a piece which is a little outdated the silhouette and style can be altered to give the piece a modern twist. And if you so wish, you can have an item entirely replicated. Perfect if you have a beautiful vintage item that has become too delicate to wear you can get an almost identical version made up.
Splendid Stitches is a slightly smaller outlet dealing specifically with vintage alterations. They focus particularly on items from the 1940s to the 1970s. They are happy to take on alterations from minor adjustments such as hemming to a full dress resizing.
They regularly set up shop at various vintage fairs and have two permanent bases; one in Kentish Town and one in Bloomsbury. Whether you need a repair, alteration or wish to have an item custom-made you are guaranteed to have your request handled with care.
There is also The Lady that Does which promises to tackle any items needing a bit of a nip or tuck. A one-woman outfit based in East London Lindsey is an experienced seamstress. The intimacy of her business means you are bound to receive to best service with a personal touch.
She has plenty of experience altering wedding dresses and can seamlessly repair any minor damage sustained to your vintage items.