Learn how to sew a hem with simple, clear sewing instructions for a beginner. Use this hem tutorial to sew blankets, dresses, curtains, wherever you may need one.
We are continuing our Simple Sewing Series today by showing you how to sew a hem. If you have missed any of the other posts, make sure to check out this free course where I show you the basics of beginning to sew.
I love sewing! I started doing this series because I really want you to love sewing too. It doesn’t have to be intimidating or frustrating. Once you get a few basics down, then you can sew just about anything.
It’s amazing what you can transform once you learn how to sew. Have you seen how I made these slipcovers to give new life to cheap wingback chairs picked up at a yard sale, or the bench cover? Or give a room a freshening by making some curtains.
I just love what you can do with fabric. A hem is definitely something you need to learn to do so you can make your projects look beautiful and finished.
Sewing a hem may seem pretty intimidating, but it is actually really simple.
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Tips For Sewing a Hem
- Make sure your thread color matches the color of the fabric so it blends in well.
- An iron is a must to get pretty and flat hems. Don’t skip this step.
- You can pin your hem down to make sure the fabric doesn’t move. I skip this step a lot, but it is good when you are just learning to sew.
- Make sure your sewing machine is on the right settings before sewing. See below on the settings I recommend.
- Always account for the hem when figuring out lengths for certain projects, like making a dress. Usually, I will add an inch for a hem. Patterns will usually already include this.
How to Sew a Hem Video Tutorial
Tools you may need to sew a hem:
How To Sew A Hem: Common Questions
What stitch should I use?
I would recommend using a straight stitch. For example, I use the #7 stitch on my sewing machine, but it may be a different number on your sewing machine.
What Sewing Machine Do I Recommend?
I own a sewing machine super similar to this one here.
Do I Really Have to Iron the Fabric Down?
I would absolutely recommend ironing down your fabric before sewing, but it is not absolutely necessary. Ironing the fabric down is a huge help in hold the fabric down while you are sewing. Also, it helps you to line up your fabric before you sew it so that you have a straight edge.
I have Never Sewn a Hem Before. I am Scared to Try.
Honestly, the best advice I have for you is to just practice sewing a hem on a little pouch like the one I have pictured, so that when you feel comfortable to sew a hem on a dress or other item, you will feel more confident. Sewing a hem is really simple once you practice a couple of time.
How to Sew a Hem | The Process
Step 1: Fold over the raw edge
- The first step is fold over the raw edges of your fabric about an inch and iron it flat.
- Then, fold the fabric over one more time, about an inch, in order to hide the raw edge.
- Iron it flat again.
- Place your project with the inside facing up so that you can see the inside of your project while you are sewing.
- Sew all the way around your project and don’t forget to do a back stitch before you start sewing and before you take your project off the machine and cut the thread.
I showed you how to backstitch in this tutorial.
And that’s it. It really is that simple!
Other Simple Sewing Series Posts
- Basic Sewing Essentials for a Beginner
- How to Thread a Sewing Machine
- How to Thread a Bobbin
- How to Sew a Seam
- How to Sew a Pillow Cover
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This post was updated August 2019