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What Are The Most Common Alterations?

Have you ever purchased, or received as a gift, a piece of clothing that you love–but that doesn’t fit just right?

Whether you’re wearing a vintage thrift store find or something new off the rack, minor alterations can have a huge impact on the items in your closet but if you’re new to the service you may not know what you can ask for.

Let’s take a closer look at what alteration services you might be able to request and what each of them do.

1. Hemming

Hemming is simply taking a few inches off the bottom of a piece of clothing. Hemming can be done to pants, shorts, skirts and even coats or shirts.

A perfect hemming makes your clothes look like they were made for you–especially if you are someone who has always struggled to find sleeves or pants that are the perfect length.

In some cases clothes that have been well-loved may have stitching come loose around the edge of a hem. Hemming is the process of repairing that stitching to ensure the fabric doesn’t fray. At Prestige Cleaners this partial hemming is something we do complimentary if our experts notice it happening to your garments.

It’s not uncommon for designers to sell high-end pants that only come in an extra-tall length. This is because they expect you to have those pants altered to your exact liking. Prestige is also able to assist with these original hems. If you need a pair of new jeans hemmed to the perfect length for your body, we are happy to assist with this service.

2. Adding a zipper or hook-and-eye

Do you have a skirt or dress that is difficult to get into because the closure is difficult to fasten? A good seamstress can help by switching out the current closure or replacing it with something different.

This process isn’t always possible in all garments. It may require some skill to line up the fabric just right or find the right buttons or zipper to replace the current one–but it’s definitely worth asking about if this is an issue for you.

Some people just prefer the simplicity of buttons or a hook-and-eye or would love the look of a chunky zipper. Whatever your preference, this is an alteration that can be done.

At Prestige Cleaners we often review garments that come through our doors to take notice of any missing or damaged buttons or hook-and-eyes. We replace these for free to ensure you can enjoy the piece for years to come!

3. Taking in or Letting Out

It’s no secret that our bodies may change over the years but if you invested in some high quality pieces of clothing it’s tough to say goodbye. Despite your body’s changes, you may not have to with some simple alterations.

Taking in or letting out is the process of making a garment slightly smaller or larger.

It makes sense that taking in, or removing some of the fabric, is a simpler process than letting out, which may require the addition of fabric, but it may still be possible to make a garment fit better by moving the hem ever so slightly.

When a piece of clothing hugs your curves just right it can be much more flattering

4. Patching

Even with regular care and maintenance, clothes are bound to wear out eventually–but patching may be able to extend the life just a bit longer.

Patching is the process of covering or fixing holes. Often it is done by adding a small piece of fabric over the hole and expertly sewing to make it look like part of the original design. Sometimes it may mean careful stitches in the same color as the fabric that helps seal up holes.

Patching is tricky business but it’s a great way to hold onto beloved pieces of clothing for at least a few more years.


During the holiday season many people receive new clothes as gifts or take advantage of sales to buy something for yourself. If the item isn’t exactly what you wanted it’s a great time to learn more about how alterations can help.

If it’s a minor repair you need to extend the life of your item, Prestige Cleaners has the expertise to help!

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