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How to Hem Jeans: A Step by Step Guide

How to Hem Jeans: A Step by Step Guide

Hemming jeans is a simple task that can be completed with just a few supplies and a little bit of know-how. In this article, we will outline the steps necessary to hem your jeans like a pro. So gather up those old jeans you bought (or the new ones) and let's get hemming!


Don’t worry, because we will also answer the question how long should jeans be before you hem them. We will also cover whether you should DIY hem your womens jeans or if you should get them professionally tailored. So, let’s dive in!


When Should You Hem Your Jeans?

Stack of Jeans


If you're not sure whether or not your jeans need to be hemmed, there are a few ways to tell. The most obvious is to measure the inseam length of your jeans. If the inseam is more than half an inch shorter than your inseam measurement, then you'll likely need to hem them. Another way to tell is by trying them on and seeing if they bunch up at the bottom. If they do, it's time to hem!


If you don’t want to hem your jeans, you could always cuff them as an alternative. Read our blog on how to cuff jeans to learn more. 


How to Hem Your Jeans at Home


There are a few different ways that you can hem your jeans at home. We will go through the different ways to DIY cut your jeans as well as the supplies you will need for each option.


Hand Sewing Your Hemmed Jeans:


The first way to hem your jeans by hand sewing them. This is a great option if you don't have access to a sewing machine, or if you're just starting out and don't want to invest in one yet. To hand sew your jean, you'll need:


  • 1 Sewing needle
  • Thread
  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors


Start by cutting off the excess fabric at the bottom of your jeans. If you are wondering how to cut your jeans neatly and precisely, there are a couple of tricks to getting it right. Assuming you want a hemline that is even all the way around, you will need to cut your jeans so that they are the same length. You will also need a pair of very sharp scissors (especially if you're working with raw denim).


  • First, put on your jeans and mark with a pencil or fabric marker where you want them to end. Make sure to take into account that the hem will add a bit of extra length.
  • Next, take them off and lay them flat on a cutting surface. Using your scissors, cut along the mark you made, being as straight as possible.
  • Now you are ready to start hemming 


Cut a strip of fabric that is twice the length of what you need. Fold the strip in half, and then sew it onto the bottom of your jeans. Start at the inside seam and sew towards the hemline. Once you reach the hemline, cut off any excess thread and you're done! Now, test the jeans length!

Using a Sewing Machine:

Woman Altering Clothing


If you have a sewing machine, hemming your jeans will be a breeze. Supplies you will need:


  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors


To hem your jeans, first try them on inside out to get the desired length. Once you have determined how much needs to be hemmed off (are you aiming for ankle length or capri lenght?) use the measuring tape and mark the fabric. Then, cut along the marked line with scissors. 


Next, use a sewing machine to hem the jeans by sewing a straight stitch along the raw edge of the fabric. Make sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of the seam. Finally, try on the pants to check the right length (for example, if you went for ankle length, are they covering the ankle bone?) and make any necessary adjustments. If you are not happy with the results, simply start over (perks of using the sewing machine).

Using the Raw Hem Method:


There's also a method of hemming jeans that doesn't involve sewing at all! This is called a "raw hem" and it's a popular method for hemming jeans because it's quick and easy. What you’ll need:


  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors 


To do a raw hem, simply cut off the excess fabric at the bottom of your trousers. Then, use a measuring tape, check the leg length and measure how much you need to take up. Once you've measured, use scissors to fray the edges of your jeans to get that kick-flare jeans effect – a frayed hem that has a distressed look.


How to Get Your Jeans Tailored

Sewing Machine


If you're not comfortable hemming your jeans yourself, you can always take them to a tailor or a seamstress. They will be able to hem them for you quickly and easily. The cost of hemming jeans varies depending on where you take them and how much fabric needs to be removed. 


If you are wondering how to tailor your jeans, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind. First, it's important to find a tailor who is experienced in working with all kinds of jeans (for example: skinny jeans, straight leg jeans, chinos, mom jeans, bootcut jeans, etc.). This will ensure that your jeans are hemmed correctly and that the overall look is clean and polished.


Next, you'll need to decide how you want your jeans hemmed. The most common options are the types of hemming we reviewed above: a straight hem, which is a clean and simple look, or a raw hem, which leaves the denim slightly frayed for a more casual look.


Once you've decided on the style of hem you want, it's time to get measuring. You'll need to take into account the rise of your jeans (the distance from the crotch to the waistband), as well as the inseam (the distance from the crotch to the hem). Then once you have your measurements, simply take them to your tailor and they'll be able to hem your jeans to perfection so that you can wear them ASAP.


You can also talk to your tailor about jean sizing in general and how your jeans should fit outside of your length. See our blog on the best fitting jeans for curvy figures to learn more.


How Much Does It Cost to Hem Jeans Through a Tailor?


The cost to hem jeans can vary depending on the tailor. However, it typically costs between $10 and $15 to hem a pair of jeans. This price may be higher or lower depending on the tailor's location and experience.


Before hemming your jeans, you will need to take them to a tailor. Also, washing your jeans before hemming could be a good idea. After that, the tailor will assess the jeans and determine how much fabric needs to be removed. Once the tailor has hemmed the jeans, they will usually give you a choice of hemming options.

Women Wearing Heels and Hemmed Jeans


If you are hemming your jeans for the first time, we recommend that you choose the original hem option. This will ensure that your jeans are the same length as when you bought them. If you are unsure about the hemming options, we recommend that you ask the tailor for advice. Once you have decided on the hemming option, the tailor will hem the jeans and give them back to you. The process typically takes about 1-2 weeks.


Buying New Jeans or Hemming Old Jeans


Ultimately, jeans can be made in so many variations (For example: an ankle jean, boyfriend jean, cropped jean, baggy jean, curvy fit jean, straight leg jean, skinny jean). And this means that they can sometimes be a bit tricky to a tailor. Thankfully, our guide on how to hem jeans will take you through all the steps you need to get a perfect fit. So whether your jeans are too long or too short, we’ve got you covered. Shop for some new jeans and find your ideal fit.