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How to Hem Denim Jeans

Updated on April 13, 2012

Does this look Familiar

This is your typical faded bluejeans pants hem with bulky side seam at hem and dark gold thread stitching
This is your typical faded bluejeans pants hem with bulky side seam at hem and dark gold thread stitching

What Supplies do you need?

Okay!.... You have Jeans that are too long...


I use the long straight pins with the round ball on the head so I can see them to pull them out when I am sewing.

The correct sewing machine needle

The correct Jeans topstitching thread.

I have just been given the task of hemming my man's jeans. I did not want to do it... but what are the alternatives.

Apparently they did not have them in his length so he needs me... Rah Rah.

I promptly jumped into the car and went to the nearest sewing store to get what they call
DENIM/JEANS NEEDLES on one brand and JEANS/DENIM NEEDLES on the other Brand. Size 16 for heavyweight fabrics and Topstitching is the size of the sewing machine needle
They actually had 4 brands, but I bought one universal pack and 1 Brand name pack as no one carries needles that just say PFAFF on them and I had to have them.

Thread--- well the jeans he got had the gold thread for topstitching and he would not settle for white, so I had to buy some thread that said on it Jeans Topstitching Thread and was the exact color GOLD that was on his pants when he bought them.

I am going to say right now that I have no idea how you are really supposed to do this, but this is how I did it. He put on the pants and told me exactly how much to take off. I measured the inside of the leg to make sure everything paralleled. How much he wanted me to take off, how long they were on the tag when he bought them and the length he would normally buy. When all numbers agreed I got out my glorious Gingher scissors. Never to be allowed to cut crafts, metal, plastic.... only fabric for these wonderful sharp Ginghers.

*** I cut off the pants legs right above the stitched hem there now. I did this exactly on on both legs.

***At the jeans seam that is topstitched flat I knew my machine would not go through the entire bulk of the seam when turned up, so I used my trusty tiny seam ripper that came with the sewing machine box, but any seam ripper head with point will do... but I needed to get rid of the extra fabric in that topstitched seam so the hem would fold flat and I could use my IDT or Integrated Dual Feed and make my seam nice and even. This allows both the top and bottom fabrics to go through at the same speed no matter what you are working with. It is built into my sewing machine, but some machines have it come as an attachment. It works just like the teeth on the bottom plat where your need goes down only it presses on the top of the fabric. You don't have to have this to do the jeans hem, but in a lot of sewing these top teeth attachments are worth their weight in gold.

*** I folded up the end of the pants legs just 1/8 of an inch and then 2/8 or 1/4 and Pinned.

***I creased the hem amount as I pinned so that I would be able to topstitch right at the edge of the pantslegs hem.

*** I wound the bobbin thread with the Jeans topstitching thread and threaded the top of my sewing machine with the spool... test stitched for tension and ...... away we go.

Yes... I topstitched around the edge pulling out the pins as I went and they are now in the washer. If the edges don't hold up I will be stitching them again.... but he said they were okay when he tried them on.

****Continuing Saga... well he decided they looked too new... he has thrown bleach on them in the sink... I can't wait until I see them tomorrow.... ARRGH!! OMG Charlie Brown!!!

We might have to make a denim blue jean quilt!!!!

Remember to follow my articles for other sewing, hobby, and real life tips. Thanks for stopping by.


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