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Cheapest & smartest place to get pants altered

Chimes

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A Department Store?

My Neighborhood Tailor?

Other?

Any replies are greatly appreciated as this will be a first for me...
 

regularjoe

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It depends. If all you need is the hem raised/lowered and adding/removing cuffs, that's a relatively simple job. I go to a seamstress near my office as she charges a couple of bucks for the job (less than a tailor). I've even had some take the waist in and have been pleased with the results.

If you need something drastic, like recutting the pants, find ye a good tailor.

I understand most department store tailors are pretty poor so you may be better off looking elsewhere if the task is large.
 

kabert

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Dept. store tailoring is usually free, which is nice. On the other hand, if they do it wrong, complaining is more difficult.
Tailors are more expensive but more of a sure thing.

Other things that always bug me about tailoring -- they all seem (i) to like to cut cuffs at 1-1/2 inches rather than 1-3/4 as I request; (ii) to err too far on the side of making the slacks too long --thus, my "slight/traditional" break request too often ends up being a large break.
That said, you are a little less likely to have such probs if you go to a neighborhood tailor.

I still use the dept. store tailor to do simple tailoring if it's free. It's either that or I pay my neighborhood tailor $15. I'd rather go the free route unless I've bought the slacks at a store that's too inconvenient to make it worthwhile.
 

faustian bargain

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how do you find a cheap seamstress?

i went to one (okay, a 'dressmaker' ) based on a coworker's recommendation, and she charged me an arm and a leg (HA. ) to take in the sleeves and body of a shirt. granted it's not a slam-dunk type of job, still she's charging me $70. almost enough for a new shirt. (plenty enough, if i order from jantzen.)

should i avoid anyone calling themselves 'dressmaker'?

what about using the people at the dry cleaners, who have the 'alterations' sign in the front window?

/andrew - starting to consider learning how to sew
 

Classic

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For simple jobs, I use the tailor at the dry cleaner where I take my suits to be cleaned and or pressed. It is relatively quite inexpensive, they do a good job, and their fee includes a cleaning and or steaming.
For more complicated jobs, I generally use the Rosen inhouse tailor, just in case something goes wrong.

Classic
 

VMan

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/andrew - starting to consider learning how to sew
You should take it up - it's a very useful skill to have.

I've learned the basics. Really, it only takes a few afternoons of practice, and soon enough you'll be able to take in the sides of a shirt, hem the shirt tail so it looks better untucked, hem pant legs, and so on. I know nothing about altering jackets, but it's really easy to learn how to alter a shirt and you can save a lot of money by doing it yourself.

If you're interested in starting, go to your local goodwill/salvation army and pick up a dozen dress shirts for $1-$4 each. Perfect for practice.
 

kabert

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Faustian, I assume the charge was so much b/c of taking in the sides of the shirt. Done right, it's a time consuming job.

You ought to have Ian Daniels at the World's Finest set you up with some Barba shirts that are properly fitting (narrower than most).

By the way, I agree everyone should know the basics of needle and thread. It takes just a few minutes to sew on a new button or to sew up a hole in a sweater. It's a simple thing to learn how to do. Anything more complicated than that -- I avoid but applaud those who learn.
 

bryce330

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70 bucks to take in a shirt .?.?.??.??.

You are getting ripped off, big-time. My tailor charges $10 and does a great job.
 

faustian bargain

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yeah, that's what i figured. oh well, live and learn. in the meantime, here's a fantastic resource i just found. it's a transcription of a book by the Women's Institute of Arts & Sciences, published in 1933, called Principles of Tailoring if anyone's interested in sewing stuff, there's lots of info there. some detailed pictures too. in fact there are many other period sewing reference books on that site, from pre-1900 through the '50's. seems mostly to focus on women's clothes, but there are some useful ones. /andrew - burned but still alive
 

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