There's probably 50 different ways to hem pants. Every shop I've worked in has had their own flavor or version they prefer. Today, I am showing you how to do simple hand hemming with a needle and thread. In general, this is a finish you will be asked to do in higher-end couture shops, custom bridal wear, and theater where the quality of the finish is more important than the time. Hand-hemming lends a softness and incredible hand to a garment, however it can take 30 min to 4 hrs. to complete a piece so set yourself aside some time to do it if you want this right. The finished piece will generally hold up to the regular wash, but should be treated like lingerie or heirloom sewing. Hand-washing or the dry cleaners is always better for lovely custom work.
We will be doing a top
today for you to see various versions of this. Please note this is an assymetrical draped hem I did for practice. Anyone can do an even hem easily. If you haven't done even hems before, just put on the shoes you will be wearing on the finished piece and a ruler, with a straight ruler or yardstick, get someone to walk around you and measure at the height you want the finished garment to be. Add at least 1 1/2 inches for a narrow hem and 3 inches for a wide hem. If you don't have a "skirt hemmer" (aka-ruler), you can pick one up for under $1 at Wal-mart in the office/school supply section or pay $5-30.00 for a fancy one at any sewing supply store. When I worked retail, we just did this by eye.
Piece to Be Hemmed/Finished
Needle (I prefer John James which you can buy in any sewing store or Amazon
for a few dollars)
Thread (Use good tailors Rices or Salamide thread. This is available in any beading store in small 40 yard cards for $1-2 or online
. You will need only need a small amount. One card will normally do several pants or dresses.)
Pins (Dressmaker Pins are available by the 300-500 for $1-3 at any sewing store or online
Optional Ruler (Under $1 at any Dollar Tree, Wal-mart, or School/Office Supply Store)