How to Sew a Rip by Hand

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Things You'll Need

  • Sewing scissors

  • Straight pins

  • Needle

  • Thread

Fix a rip in cloth by hand-sewing it closed.

When a piece of cloth rips, sometimes you can repair it by hand. If you do it properly, the new stitching will hold the pieces together for a long time. Rips can occur along seams, which are easy to fix, or anywhere else on the fabric. Provided that you didn't lose a large amount of fabric in the rip, the item will be almost the same size as before. The amount of time it takes to mend the rip depends on its size.


Step 1

Trim the rip if it's frayed.

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Step 2

Fold down the edges of the rip. Press the two side together. Pin them together with straight pins.

Step 3

Wet the tip of the thread if you have trouble threading the needle.

Cut off a 1-1/2- to-2-foot piece of string. Thread one end of the string through the eye of the needle.

Step 4

Slide the needle down to the middle of the string. Tie the two ends together in a knot.

Step 5

Start from the wrong side of the fabric and push the tip of the needle through, right above one end of the rip. Pull the string all the way through the fabric until the knot touches the fabric.


Step 6

Push the needle through the fabric right next to the knot. Pull the string all the way through. Push the needle through the pinned-together rip next to the stitch you just made, leaving a small gap between the stitch and the needle. Continue this pattern until the entire rip closes.

Step 7

Cut off the remaining string. Tie it into a knot. Remove the straight pins.


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