Dreamy_Rinn's Alteration Service Review


This isn’t my first piece of lolita clothing that I have had altered. This isn’t even my first piece of brand that I’ve had altered. But it is the first lolita brand dress that I have had altered - I finally decided that I love Royal Unicorn too much to part with it, but that I can’t stand the discomfort of wear that particular cut has in store for me. And thankfully there is a lolita not just within the UK, but locally to me, @dreamy_rinn, who offers alteration services and who has enough sewing and tailoring experience to put any anxieties at ease. Spoiler alert, she has done an amazing job with this alteration and I want to leave this review here so that more people are aware. Whilst she doesn’t have any slots available for alterations at the moment, you should absolutely follow her on Instagram, so that you don’t miss it when a slot opens up.

The Process

Getting in touch with Dreamy Rinn was extremely easy as it was simply a matter of sending an Instagram DM. She has a highlight of stories on her page dedicated to the alterations she can do and what they cost, which you can check before making an initial enquiry to speed the process along. I received a response very quickly (granted, being in the same time zone helps, but still, all communication was very timely) and we swiftly agreed on details. My initial message was in fact about two dresses, which Dreamy Rinn asked me to provide stock pictures of so that she could get an idea of what she was working with. And even though in the end she was only able to alter one of those, I appreciate the honesty of her saying that she wasn’t confident enough to take on the other one. A more greedy person would’ve accepted both and not bothered if they butchered the job, so having someone who understands the value not only of an alteration done well, but also the intrinsic value of lolita garments and who can be honest with me to say “I’m sorry, but this one is beyond me right now” is really appreciated. I definitely would’ve been more upset with a badly done alteration than I am keeping the other dress that currently doesn’t fit me.

The highlight is much more readable on mobile, I'm just too lazy to switch between devices.

We discussed what I wanted from the altered Royal Unicorn JSK. My initial expectation was that the waist ties would be used to add panels to make the dress comfortably fit my current measurements, but Dreamy Rinn suggested also lowering it slightly for a fit that was closer to my natural waist. Since this is what I want from lolita dresses cut-wise these days, I accepted without hesitation and am grateful for the suggestion. As someone with only very rudimentary knowledge of alterations and sewing, being guided through my options meant that I had clarity on what was possible and could make an informed decision. Additionally, Dreamy Rinn explained what the process would entail to keep my expectations in check (e.g. with regard to how much of the waist ties may remain), as well as confirmed the approximate timelines. Once all of those details were agreed, it was time for me to pay and send the dress to her.

The Pricing and Timeline

As per her pricing highlight, adding a panel to a dress and lengthening the straps comes up to £50. The price includes all the costs as well as tracked and insured return postage. I only had to cover postage of the dress to Dreamy Rinn, but that also meant that I could select an option that I was personally most comfortable with. And considering the level of skill (as well as the standard of the alteration, but more on that shortly), this is overall more than a fair price. The other alteration that I have had done at an alterations shop that mostly does bridal stuff came up to about £30 for adding panels to a vest and I did have to return there a few times as they were just not factoring in things like movement, eating etc., which Dreamy Rinn included from the moment I sent her my measurements.

In terms of timing, I feel the need to stress that I am a pretty laid back person when it comes to services like this and/or purchasing from independent creators and craftspeople. Moreover, I am very rarely doing these things on a deadline because I just do not wish to deal with the stress of wondering if things will be done on time when I have no control over them. Which means that as long as I am kept informed about what’s happening, I don’t mind delays and don’t necessarily pay attention to advertised timeframes. This was especially so with this JSK, as I started the process in summer, in the middle of a heatwave, and I wasn’t exactly needing a velvet and gobelin dress anytime soon! Dreamy Rinn advertises her alterations time as 2-3 week from the receipt of the garment, which to me seemed really quick to begin with. When I originally messaged, she has told me up front that there would be at least one week of a delay due to a holiday she was taking, which again, I had zero problems with. In the end my particular alteration took longer than that both due to Dreamy Rinn needing a break and due to very unfortunate circumstances caused by Royal Unicorn itself, which I won’t go into details about. I received the altered dress back around 9 weeks after posting, in which time the UK has gone through at least two heatwaves (so my mind definitely wasn’t considering velvet and gobelin clothing!) and I received a comprehensive work-in-progress update with pictures.

The Alteration

Let’s start with what the dress was like before I had it altered. Over the years of owning Royal Gobelin my body has changed, but it was also a cut that in its very nature didn’t necessarily agree with my hourglass proportions and 94cm chest. The JSK is on the shorter side to begin with and with my chest causing it to ride slightly, the hemline fell considerably above my knee, whilst the waistline sat at my underbust. As lockdown changed my body further, I have found myself getting to the stage of having to fight the dress a little to fit or to resort to using non-padded bras, which in turn made for a silhouette that I wasn’t so keen on on myself.

The last time I wore Royal Unicorn pre-alterations was May 2021. As you can see, I used a skirt for an underskirt, the waist seam sat pretty much right at my underbust and the bodice was trying to squish me in with that cut, despite the shirring offering some ease.

From the moment Dreamy Rinn sent me the work in progress photos, I knew that she did an excellent job because… I couldn’t tell that anything had been altered! Not at a glance anyway. The photos of the dress on her mannequin looked as if nothing had been done at all and I only able to see where the alteration took place when she sent me closeups of the straps and the added side panel. And considering that velvet has a pile, which makes it notoriously tricky to work with, this is extremely impressive! I was informed prior to the dress being posted back to me that I might need to press the seams again, which I have done since, though admittedly I’m not necessarily sure whether I’d done it right, despite following instructions carefully.

Would you ever have questioned this photo or thought that anything was different with the dress?
Work in progress photo sent to me by Dreamy Rinn.

Replacing the trim is done so well that it took me until I steamed the seams to notice that the gold lace underneath the braid trim is missing from the added panel. And you see how close you have to get to notice that in the first place!
Work in progress photo sent to me by Dreamy Rinn.

The added panel by the zipper, which might as well be some crease that hasn't been ironed out.
Work in progress photo sent to me by Dreamy Rinn.

And the added panel on the opposite side of the bodice. This may be the most noticeable bit of alteration done - except that this is usually where my arm is, so it's not like you see that anyway.
Work in progress photo sent to me by Dreamy Rinn.

Thankfully, the weather has finally realised that it’s September and cosy season is upon us, so I was able to wear it. Of course, I tried it on immediately upon arrival, even though it had still been very warm then. Muscle memory made me brace for a fight with the zip and I might’ve hit myself in the face with the impact as it glided smoothly to the end had I not moved my head out of the way. Gone are the struggles of zipping it over my chest or searching for extra room to ensure the zip doesn’t get stuck at the waist seam (which admittedly it never did because Royal Unicorn has a regular zipper with a placket rather than an invisible one which are usually the ones causing problems). Not only that, I suddenly found myself having extra room in this dress both thanks to the panel adding some space to that already offered by the shirring and thanks to the waist seam sitting closer to my natural waist. Still not quite on my natural waist, but no longer at my underbust. I could actually use some corset lacing in this JSK now, which it never had in the first place and now I no longer have the waist ties, but if I need a tighter fit I could just use belts or something. It’s not that the fit is now loose, it’s more just what I am used to with my lolita clothing, though I am very happy with the extra room, it’s enough for a dinner/big lunch/dim sum sort of eating meet without getting uncomfortable. And as you may have gathered, thanks to lowering the waistline and the dress no longer riding up due to my chest, the hemline sits a bit lower. It’s still not quite at my knees, because the dress simply was that short to begin with, but I think that I will be much more comfortable wearing it without an underskirt now. And if not, well, I do have nice underskirt options anyway, so it doesn’t matter.

The first coord post-alteration. And even though my edgy posing here is twisting things a little, you can still see the slight change in proportions and what a difference that has done: the waist seam is lower, my chest no longer tries to escape compression by the bodice through the sides and the hemline is now only about 5cm above my knees, which is a much more comfortable and flattering length.

Final verdict

Surely it goes without saying that this is a totally positive review! Dreamy Rinn’s alteration is very professional, both in the work itself and in how she handled the entire process. The price is at a very accessible point and more than reasonable for the standard of craftsmanship that I received back. As I said, the dress looks pretty much exactly as it did pre-alterations unless you know where to look for the insertions, which is what many of us want when we look for alteration services. Knowing that I can trust Dreamy Rinn to be honest with me and tell me what I can expect or to tell me if she isn’t confident taking a particular task on put my mind at ease that I was sending a precious dress to someone who will respect it and who understands their craft as well as limitations. If I were the type to amass more pieces that don’t fit me all too well, I would not hesitate sending her another request message. Since I’m not, I would like to encourage you to consider her if you are looking for a trustworthy and professional alterations service for lolita fashion. Again, bear in mind that at the moment she doesn’t have any slots open and that she is based in the UK, but once she does and you don’t mind the wait that international postage might involve if that applies to you - I cannot recommend Dreamy Rinn highly enough!


  1. She really did do a brilliant job! The JSK fits you much better now, keen to see you wear it more!

    1. It will definitely get worn more now that it fits me so much more comfortably!


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