How to Repair a Hem

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(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

A few quick stitches can take care of a kicked-out hem on a pair of pants or a skirt. This is one repair that proves the cliche' "A stitch in time saves nine," so find your sewing kit and get to work.

Things You'll Need

  • Straight Pins
  • Needle
  • Ruler Or Measuring Tape
  • Thread
  • Scissors

Use a ruler or measuring tape to measure the hem at a spot where it hasn't pulled out.

(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

Where the hem needs to be repaired, turn it under the same width. Pin it into place with straight pins (see A).

(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

Thread the needle with thread the same color as that used in the rest of the hem. Cut a piece of thread about 18 inches (45 cm) long, pass one end through the eye of the needle, and tie the two loose ends into a knot.

(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

Working on the inside of the garment (the side that doesn't show), start stitching about 1/2 inch (12 mm) before where the hem has begun to pull out, using the blind hemstitch (see steps 5 through 7).

(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

Make a small horizontal stitch in the fabric, picking up only a few threads from the right side of the fabric, so it will be barely noticeable when you're wearing the garment.

(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

Take the next stitch, this time a little bit larger, in the folded hem, about 1/4 inch (6 mm) from the first stitch (see B). Don't pull the stitches too tightly or the fabric will pucker.

Repeat steps 5 and 6 until you've crossed the distance of the pulled hem plus about 1/2 inch (12 mm).

(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

Tie a knot in the thread, and snip off the thread with the scissors.

(Image: Pamella Follett/Demand Media)

Tips & Warnings

  • If you have a sewing machine equipped with a blind hemstitch feature, you can use it instead of doing steps 4 through 7 by hand.
  • Ideally a hem is almost invisible when you're wearing the garment. To accomplish this, take the tiniest stitch possible when stitching through to the right side of the fabric.

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