Thursday, May 27, 2010

how to hem your jeans

I can't believe how many "how to" sites have you chopping off the bottoms of your jeans to shorten them. Some even having you sewing the bottom edge back on after you've chopped it! Eee-yuck! It's a pain, and it never looks right.
I just spent the last 45 minutes trying to find a good description of the easy way to do it, and I give up. Actually - this girl does an ok job, but the video goes too slowly & skims the important bits. So here you go!
  1. decide/measure the length you want to shorten, and divide that amount by 2. (so, if you want to shorten by 2 inches, remember "1"). Good so far?
  2. fold up the jeans in a cuff until the existing hem is half the distance you want to shorten from the fold. (in the above example, measure 1 inch of doubled fabric from the fold to where the fabric touches the existing hem).
  3. pin in place, lining up the side hems (it will look like you've pinned the jeans in a cuffed look).
  4. sew as close as you can to the existing hem. It's counter-intuitive: you're essentially taking in a loop of fabric all the way around the hem.
  5. iron the fold of the fabric so it will lie flat.
  6. fold it up into the pant leg and iron again, this time along the hem, so the original hemmed edge points down, and the taken in fabric is hidden inside the pant leg.
You're done! If you're sure that your jeans won't shrink any more, and that you'll always want 'em this length, you can cut off that loop of fabric about a half-inch from your sewn line.

Actually - I'm pretty sure you'll have so much fun doing this that you'll run through the steps every time you feel like switching from flats to heels and back again.