Silhouette offers a wide range of sewing services from basic alterations and mending, like hemming jeans and darning holes, to more extensive creative jobs, like vintage restyling. What sets us a part from other alteration businesses, is every member of the Silhouette team has a degree in apparel design and a strong understanding of garment construction and fit. We pride ourselves on doing the best possible job we can, every time.
Silhouette is now fittings by appointment only. If you need to try on your garment(s) for us to pin, you will need to make an appointment. You can do so by calling ahead or booking an appointment online. For mending, repairs, pre-pinned alterations, or to pick up your completed alterations, you can come by at any time.
Please plan ahead for getting your alterations completed as our turnaround varies depending on the project, the quantity of garments you are needing done and the season. During our slower season of November through February, we can generally turn around jeans hems in a week or under and formal wear and bridal gowns in 1-3 weeks. But during our peak season of March through October, jeans hems can take up to two weeks, larger number of items and formal wear 2-4 weeks, and bridal gowns 1-4 months. Alterations needed to be completed before our projected turnaround will be subject to a rush fee.
If its made of fabric, we can sew it, mend it, or make it fit you better!
There is nothing like a perfect fitting outfit to bring confidence and brighten your day. And for most of us, buying ready-to-wear just doesn’t do the trick. If you are shorter, flatter, bustier, rounder, taller, curvier, or anything other than “average” we can help make your clothes fit you better! Book your alteration appointment today!
Alteration Services include: hemming pants, dresses, skirts, sleeves and knits; taking in side seams, princess seams, darts, zippers, and sleeves; tapering pants and skirts; shortening shoulder straps, recutting armholes, and adjusting sleeve placement. But this is just the start! We have extensive knowledge on working with knits, finer fabrics and vintage clothing.
Repair Services include: darning and patching holes, mending torn seams, sewing on/ replacing buttons, fixing and replacing zippers, and replacing worn out linings.
Men, we can help you out, too! We can hem and taper pants, take in dress shirts and sweaters, and shorten sleeves. For more extensive suit alterations just be sure to book an appointment with Hannah. She is our men’s tailoring expert!
We DO NOT work on home decor. While we have made pillows and curtains in our lives, we just stick with clothing at Silhouette. Our studio space and tables just aren’t large enough to work on these types of items. For home decor sewing we recommend Nip & Tuck Sewing at 8826 SE Stark St.
We DO NOT work on leather products, EXCPT for clothing made from very thin leather. It just isn’t our specialty. We recommend Miriam Enciso at Leather Sewing for repairs and alterations. She is located at 1105 SE Reynolds St. and her number is (503) 239-0142
Below are estimates for non-formalwear alterations and repair costs. Every garment is made differently, so pricing is very dependent on the individual garment.
Silhouette owner, Julia Studer, has been altering wedding dresses since 2007. As a designer specializing in alterations, she has an eye for restyling and a mind for problem solving. Her goal is to make your concept and dream a reality for your big day.
How much will bridal alterations cost
- Most brides will be needing $300-600 of alterations. Be sure you budget that in when choosing a dress.
How long will alterations take?
- This will depend on your dress style and what alterations are needed. Generally we need 3-5 weeks in between appointments and most brides will need 2-3 appointments. Roughly one to three months total.
- Lace, beading and restyling (like adding an illusion neckline) will add to the number of appointments needed.
When to schedule an appointment
- Your first appointment should be 2-3 months prior to your wedding date.
- Please book a month or two in advance as Julia’s schedule tends to get filled up quickly March – September.
- Saturday appointments tend to be the most popular. If you need to come in on a Saturday, please plan ahead.
- If you keep a consistent body weight and have the shoes you plan on wearing, we can get your alterations done months in advance. Just one more thing you can check off your list!
- Vintage restyling we recommend getting started with a consultation 6-8 months prior to your wedding date (see Restyling for more information).
What to bring to your appointments
- Your wedding shoes. This is very important to ensure the perfect length.
- If you plan on wearing a bustier or bra, please bring it along
- Sew-in bra pads are available for $30. We carry A – DD cups.
- For sheer or tight fitting dresses, nude seamless briefs or thongs work best, like these guys from Commando.
- Your fittings are a great time to see if the underwear you have purchased will work with your dress.
- Jewelry and veil to get the full image of what yo will look like on your wedding day
- Silhouette also carries bridal jewelry from local designer, beadAlex
Who to bring to your appointment
- Please bring only one to three people. Silhouette is an intimate setting, and does not have a lot of extra room for an entourage.
- If your gown is getting bustled, please try to bring a member of your bridal party to the pickup appointment so she can be shown how to use the bustle.
- 30 minutes consultations cost $25
- We go over all fit and design issues. We roughly pin the alterations so you can see the gown fitting properly
- You leave with a full price estimate for the alterations we discussed and a timeline for the process
- If you have the dress on hold or can return it, the consultation fee is waved
- Vintage restyling consultations are also free
- Please read above for what to bring to your fitting
- Costs will depend on what alterations are needed. Average for taking in sides and hemming is around $120
- Turnaround for a bridesmaid dress is generally two to three weeks
- Basic measurements (Bust, Waist, Hips) cost $5
- We will also give expert advise for which size to purchase based off the silhouette of the dress and the size chart.
- Extensive measurements cost $20. Please bring in the measurements required along with any diagram to ensure accuracy
Veils and headpieces:
Bras for buxom brides:
BeadAlex, found exclusively at Silhouette
Dry cleaning and pressing:
Has it been your dream to wear your mother’s or grandmother’s wedding dress but want it to be a bit more modern? Or did you choose a new wedding dress but wish it had a v-neck, lower back or straps? Or perhaps you have a ready to wear dress that you think you would wear more if it was converted to a skirt or hemmed up to just be a blouse? Guess what, we can help you with all of this!
Full vintage bridal restyling
Many brides fall in love with the idea of wearing their mother’s wedding dress. In many cases, these dresses were handmade, sometimes by a family member, and if the dress was properly stored, can still be in great condition. For full bridal restyling, around six to eight months before the wedding is recommended for the initial consultation. At this meeting, you will need to bring the dress, and any ideas or pictures you have in mind for the restyling. We will let you know what is possible and give suggestions on how we can make your vision a reality.
What can be done?
We can remove sleeves and collars, change the cut of the bodice, add width if the dress is too tight, shorten the dress and/or train, add linings or overlays, and convert dresses into separates. We are working within the constraints of the original dress, but truly a lot can be changed to bring your style and aesthetic into a vintage dress.
Why is the lead time so long?
Sometimes after starting the restyling process, brides realize the dress is too far from their personal style and they just want to find their own perfect dress. By starting early enough, if you decide to opt out, you still have enough time to find and purchase a new dress without enduring stress and rush fees.
What will this cost?
The cost of restyling varies depending on what needs to be done. A rough estimate for a full vintage dress restyling is $400-1200. This includes all alteration and material costs. Schedule an appointment to get your personal quote!
New bridal restyling
Sometimes you can’t find EXACTLY your dream dress, but find one that you feel is almost right. In this situation, you may want to change the neckline, add straps or sleeves, change the cut of the skirt, or add an overlay. If any fabric is going to be added, please leave a longer lead time (around three – four months). Some dress companies allow you to purchase fabric from them to ensure an exact match, or I can hopefully track down a matching fabric. Having photo examples of what you are wanting is always helpful.
When should we get started?
The exact amount of time needed will depend on what type of design work you are wanting done along with the other alterations needed. For adding more simple straps, no additional time will be needed on top of the alteration timeline. For more complicated restyling, 4-5 months may be required for the process. It is always best to set up a consultation at least 6 months prior to your wedding date. At the consultation we will discuss options, pricing and timeline.
How much will this cost?
Cost of restyling will depend on what you are wanting done and the construction of the gown. Adding straps starts at $50, building up illusion necklines starts at $400, replacing a zipper for a corset back starts at $220, recutting front or back necklines is generally around $60-80, and adding a skirt overlay starts at $240 plus material cost.
Non bridal restyling
We also do non-bridal restyling at Silhouette. This includes turning dresses into skirts, converting jackets to vests, and changing the neckline of shirts and dresses. Sometimes it’s worth it to restyle your thrift shop find into a truly personalized piece!
I’ve walked in with alterations before, why do I need an appointment now?
Two reasons. First: as we have become busier we need to reserve time to actually do the sewing. Second: we don’t want to waste your time by coming in and us not being able to see you right away because we have back to back appointments scheduled. By moving to fittings by appointment only, we can regulate the workload coming in AND give better attention to our clients at their fittings.
What don’t I need an appointment for?
You do not need an appointment to shop our retail section or if you are dropping off mending or pre-pinned garments. Essentially if you need to try on a garment to be pinned by us for alterations, you need an appointment. For anything else you can just stop in.
How long does the alteration process take?
Mending and simple alterations (like jeans hems) generally take 1-2 weeks depending on our current workload. Bridesmaid, formal and prom dresses take 1-2 weeks during our slower season and up to 4 weeks during our peak season. The timeline for bridal gowns alterations and restyling varies greatly with what alterations are needed and the style of the dress. Generally appointments are spaced 3-6 weeks apart with 2-3 appointments needed for alterations and 3-6 appointments needed for restyling.
When is your peak season?
Peak season is from March through October.
How much will it cost?
Alteration costs depends 100% on the alterations needed and the construction of the garment. We can only give an accurate estimate once we have looked over the garment in person. For bridal alteration prices please read our bridal section.
How will I know when my alterations are complete?
We will call or text you as soon as your alteration is finished and ready for pickup. If your alteration is still at the studio after a month we will call to remind you. If your alteration has been left for six months after completion, we will donate your garment(s) to either Dress for Success or Goodwill.
What if my garment still doesn’t fit or I’m not satisfied with the work done?
We always recommend trying on your altered garment(s) at pickup. But if you are in a rush, we understand, just try on your garment(s) within the next couple of days. Customer Satisfaction is our priority. If you are unhappy with an alteration, please inform us within 14 days of picking up. If it is an error on our side, we will fix the problem for no additional charge. Sometimes alterations are a process and can take a couple fittings to get perfect. If additional alterations are needed, there will be additional costs.
When and where are the alterations actually sewn?
Some of the alterations are done on site at Silhouette. But we have a much larger sewing work space off site where most of the alterations are completed.