Hi! Can you recommend a good mananahi? I'm 5' and skinny so I need to have most of my clothes altered but I'm kinda scared to entrust dresses and jeans worth thousands of pesos to just anyone! Thanks! - Rose
Hi Rose! I know what you mean! It really is scary to get an expensive article of clothing altered if you don't know a mananahi you can trust. Thankfully, I've been through the hunt and can recommend a couple of my tried and tested mananahis who do alterations for me:
JEANS and PANTS - There's a stall on the topmost floor of Shoppesville Greenhills where I get my pants shortened and jeans cut and sewed "back to original". I don't know exactly the stall number, but I do know its right beside the Castel scrubs stall. They have all sorts of denim thread to match whatever thread was used for your jeans. They are pros that way. I have no fear when it comes to bringing my 7s and Citizens denims there. Just make sure that you tell them exactly how many inches to cut off. I had one casualty that ended up a tad too short, which in a way worked well because it became the perfect" jeans for flats" sort of thing.
SUITS and JACKETS- I normally get my Mango suits, Topshop/Zara jackets and coats' sleeves cut and trimmed by Mang Ricky. He has a tailoring shop at the Soldier's Mall inside Camp Aguinaldo (Tel. No. 9116001 loc 1234). He actually makes made to measure suits for men but I befriended him and he ended up doing alterations for all my jackets and work trousers as well. I suggest that you look for a shop near your place, preferably one that makes suits, and just inquire if they can do alterations for you. Hopefully, they may accommodate your request.
TOPS and DRESSES - Ate Vicky (+639212704002) is my go to girl for alterations and quick fixes. Unfortunately, she moved back to Pampanga a couple of months ago, but is still available should I happen to have more than a couple of items that need fixing. This is because she has to travel all the way to the city to get my stuff. I have no qualms having her fix my designer tops and oversized Lacoste shirts that need a little trimming (on the sleeves and sides), that's how "clean" her work is. Au Blanc (just email me for the number!) on the other hand is my tita's hobby. She actually designs gowns but I usually have my tops and dresses made by her in-house mananahi. Like whenever I see a nice Chloe top, I just bring the print-out or the magazine to her and voila! I have my own Chloe-esque piece! We have such a long standing shared passion for clothes that she just knows what I mean. A big plus is that she knows fashion - from Zara dresses to Vera Wang and Oscar dela Renta gowns! It comes without saying that she's just happy to fix or alter dresses for me as well!
ALL OF THE ABOVE - Alterations Plus can take care of any alteration, from suits to pants to dresses. Quite expensive, but you are pretty sure that they know what they are doing. Another big plus is that they are pretty much present in all the malls here in Metro Manila. So right after shopping, you can immediately have your newly bought clothes altered to your liking.
From my experience, it all boils down to finding a tailor/seamstress who understands what you like exactly. As you look for your own trusted allies (should you happen to live far from my own style "support group"), there will be a couple of hits and misses. Hopefully, my list above will send you off to the right direction! =)