How to Sew a Professional Blind Hem
If you are like me, many of the clothes you buy need alterations… I used to pay someone to sew a blind hem on my skirts and pants. Silly, since I can sew. You can too, and you also can do a professional job hemming your pants and skirts with just a few steps and two special presser feet for your sewing machine from Madam Sew’s Ultimate Presser Foot Set, the narrow hem foot and the blind stitch foot.
In this post, I’ll show you how to do a blind hem stitch on your sewing machine to create a professional looking hem. It’s easier than it looks, and you’ll save tons of money if you learn how to hem pants yourself.
Step 1: Mark Your Hem
To begin, put your garment on and have someone else mark the lower edge of where the hem should be on your pants or skirt, while you are wearing the shoes you intend to wear with the garment. You’ll need to stand straight with your arms at your sides. Believe it or not, this does make a difference. Heel height will change the finished length of both pants and skirts as your hip position changes with higher heels. Add 1-2 inches to turn under, depending on how much fabric you have, and the look you want. I use one inch for pants and two inches for skirts, in general. Cut off the excess fabric evenly and straight.
Step 2: Finish the Raw Edge
Hems look best with the raw edge finished prior to hemming. You can use a serger for this, but if you don’t have a serger, here’s how to get that professional look, using the Rolled Edge foot (#30 in the Ultimate Presser Foot Set).
Attach the foot to your sewing machine. Begin the rolled hem near a side seam for a skirt, and start pants near the inseam. Pin under the raw edge about 1/4-inch to the wrong side with only one pin; the foot will do the rest. Take a few stitches in the hem edge to anchor it, then remove the pin.
Next, pull the raw edge into the roll of the foot.
Take a few more stitches. The fabric will begin to feed itself.
Continue sewing the narrow rolled hem all the way around your garment.
At the end, you’ll have a nicely finished edge to use for your blind hem. This rolled hem can be used alone for table covers, napkins, wide skirts, scarves, or anything where a very narrow hem is desired.
Step 3: Fold Fabric and Press
For better clothing though, you don’t want the line of stitching to show on the outside of the garment, so this next step will give you the professional blind hem look of a quality sewn garment.
Turn up the desired hem depth, in this case one inch, and use an iron to press a crease at the bottom where the hem will finish
Now, fold the hem backwards, with the right side of the bottom edge folding outward to the right side of the garment. This will expose the underside of the rolled edge you just did, and provide a fold for the blind hem foot to follow. You’ll begin sewing on the wrong side of the hem edge.
Mash the fold flat, close to the finished edge of the first hem, but do not iron it. The exact position will vary a bit depending on the stitch on your machine. It is a good idea to do a practice scrap first to be sure your settings are right.
Step 4: Sew the Blind Hem Stitch
Set your machine for a blind hem stitch. This setting will make three stitches in the rolled edge, then bite over to the fold for one stitch. Replace the foot on your machine with the #8 Blind Hem Foot. Adjust the plastic fold guide to accommodate your machine’s blind hem width. Do a practice bit first to be sure your guide is in the right place.
Begin sewing your blind hem stitch on the rolled edge. The rolled edge should be even with the right edge of the opening in the foot, with the folded edge riding along the plastic guide. The tab on the guide will run under the fold.
The stitch will bite over to the left for one stitch, then return to the rolled edge for three more stitches.
Continue sewing all the way around the hem. When finished, pull the hem flat.
On the outside, you’ll only see small stitches spaced evenly apart. When you get farther away, the stitches virtually disappear.
On wool pants, the hem is almost invisible. The following photo shows a blind hem I did about a year ago and the hem is still strong, withstanding a number of trips through the washing machine and dryer.
Even hemming denim jeans becomes an easy task when you use a bind hem stitch.
And poly-cotton blends look just as nice.
Tiny stitches can barely be seen on rayon skirts. From a distance, they virtually disappear.
So you can make your sewing skills pay off in savings, and have better fitting clothes. Just some patience and simple sewing will yield big results.
I hope that you try the blind hem stitch soon. It truly is the best way to sew more professional looking clothes.
Have fun, and Happy Sewing!
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