Feb 28

How to Sew a Hem of a Garment

Now we would all assume that most people will know how to sew a hem of a garment but there are quite a few that don’t. There are 2 different options to sew a hem of a garment, one option is machine sewing and the other option is hand sewing. I still use both methods as I believe that hand sewing work better on certain fabrics than your sewing machines. Not all the machines can also sew these different hemming stitches and not everybody owns a machine.

Firstly it would be best to fit on your garment with your shoes and then pin or mark your hem. I normally pin the hem and ask somebody to pin/mark it for you. Stand up straight and don’t look down. My hems I mark about 1 thumb from the ground, obviously depending were you want your hem.


Measure and mark hem

Now once you have your marks you can mark right around your garment. Most of my pants hems are round about 2.5 cm when I’m finished sewing it. Mostly the instruction sheet will give you a hem amount to work with. If you are short and have a lot of left over fabric on the hem, cut away the access. Let’s say that you have about 3 cm of hem.

Now fold 5mm of the hem in and then pin it all around. This is normally if you don’t have a machine or over-locker to finish the raw edges for you.

Hand Sew

Make sure that you use the correct color thread and needle for your garment and type of fabric.
Some fabrics will have more stretch than others and you have to allocate for that when sewing your hem. When you are hand sewing I mostly use the blind hemming stitch but there are other stitches that you can use as well. The hem looks neat and you can hardly see on the rights side of the fabric that you sewed a hem.

Hand sewing

Blind hemming stitch by hand

Machine Sew

Again you must check your color thread. Now when you are machine sewing your hem it all depends on what functions your sewing machine has. My one is a bit on the old side so i can just use the normal sewing stitch that you see on both sides of the fabric. On your machine its quite important to have the correct needle, because if you use too big a needle you will see the wholes on the fabric and we want to prevent that. Check you specs for you machine needles and fabrics.
Now once that is done the next important thing to check is your tension. If you have a stretchy fabric you need to allow stretch. I normally test a piece of the fabric before i actually start sewing my hems.

Sewing machine hemming

Sewing machine hem stitching

These basic steps, how to sew a hem of a garment is what i have experience to work best for me and could be used for any type of garment or item. This will give you some idea what to do when sewing a hem.

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