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How to Sew a Neat Straight Hem

Updated on September 29, 2010

How to Sew a Neat Hem

This might seem easy but if you are a beginner, learning how to sew a neat hem will make all the difference to your work. Once I knew how to sew a neat hem, it was a good feeling because everything I created turned out nice and neat and the neat hemline would just add that professional touch.

The first and most important thing is to make sure your free edge is cut as straight as you can possibly get it. I really like to use the Black and Decker Cordless Power Scissors, which take away the effort of cutting thicker fabric as well as making it very easy to cut a straight line.

Once you have your straight cut free edge, the best thing to do is to decide how far in you want your hem to go and make a double fold, keeping it STRAIGHT. Use a few pins to secure the double hem in place and then iron over to press in the folds. You should now be able to remove the pins without the fabric moving.

It does take a bit more effort than usual to iron over the soon-to-be hem as well as pin it, however, it does make a much neater hem not to mention making it much easier to sew.

Now you have your neat, pressed edge that’s just waiting to be stitched up. I like to make double stitches, one along each side of the fold, which helps to keep the hem straight and neat.

Once the hem has been stitched you MUST iron over it once more to flatten in the stitches and just ensure that it is straight as sometimes the fabric may have moved about during sewing.

And voila! You now know how to sew a neat hem.



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    • FranyaBlue profile image

      Jacqueline 7 years ago from London, England

      Hi Eric,

      You can pin it in place and keep the pin in when you sew it up. It is ok to keep pins in whilst sewing if you place them sideways, the needle will just stitch over it and you can take it out after.

      Hope that helps.

    • profile image

      Eric P 7 years ago

      I am making the nursing cover from the link attached to my name above.

      I have never sewn anything; but I thought my wife would like it.

      Here is my problem.....I fold the hem, iron the hem, and then start sewing. While sewing everything works great until I get close to the end of the fabric, that's when it start to unfold and sew uneven.????...???

      How do you keep it straight?

    • FranyaBlue profile image

      Jacqueline 7 years ago from London, England

      Thanks WildIris, the iron is key. Yes, depth is important thanks for mentioning it.

    • profile image

      WildIris 7 years ago

      The key here is the iron. Deciding on the depth of the hem is also important.

    • FranyaBlue profile image

      Jacqueline 7 years ago from London, England

      Thanks for reading and for commenting!

    • sagbee profile image

      sagbee 7 years ago from Delhi

      Good information.. I was not aware about the things you have mentioned here.. its cool.. thanks for sharing..