The trend in jeans is topstitching thread and worn out hems. This is actually how you buy jeans. What happens if the jeans are too long? You don’t want to lose the special details on the hem of your jeans. Well, this is how to hem jeans and keep the original hem. I’ve always called it a pinch hem because you pinch out the excess.

How to Hem Jeans

  1. Measure how much you need to shorten your jeans. These jeans need to be shortened 2 inches.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  2. On the inside of the jeans, mark HALF of the amount up from the stitching line. These jeans needed to go up 2 inches, so I marked up 1 inch. (I didn’t have time to redo this so I’m sorry the picture is wrong. Really, mark on the inside of the jeans; it makes it so much easier.)Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  3. The line you marked is the foldline. Fold the fabric up on this line and pin.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  4. Sew with matching thread between the stitching line and the fold. I put two black lines on the pictures to show you where to sew.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  5. Turn the fold up into the leg of the pants. Because my fold is only 1 inch long, I didn’t trim any out. If your fold is longer, cut out some of the fold and finish the edge.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  6.  Iron the hem really well. You’ll need to push up the fold really well.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  7. Trim the fold inside down to 5/8″ and serge the raw edges.
  8. Sew an 1/8″ above the fold. I like to move my needle over to the very left and then keep the fold on the center line of my sewing foot. I know everyone has different feet so do what you’re comfortable with. Make sure the thread is as close in color as possible.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  9. Then tack the fold up at each side seam.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original
  10. The left picture is what the tacking looks like on the inside. The right picture shows the tacking on the other seam.Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original

This is the end result. You can kind of see the topstitching above the other stitching, but from far away nobody can see it. Now your pants are the right length without looking like they were hemmed! It’s the best trick for how to hem your jeans!

Pinch Hem: A Hem That Looks Like The Original

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Author: Heather Handmade

I'm a seamstress and mother. I sew, blog, thrift, upcycle, design fabric, and teach sewing classes. I'm also a self-proclaimed fabric fondler.

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10 thoughts on “How to Hem Jeans with the Original Hem

  1. Finally found the courage to try this tutorial. I'm kicking myself for waiting so long!! Who knew it's so EASY?! No telling how many times I've paid 10-12$ for an original hem at a tailors. NOT ANY MORE! Thank you for sharing.

    Posted on November 24, 2013 at 2:21 am
  2. It doesn't work unless it's straight leg style, right?

    Posted on June 26, 2013 at 12:33 pm
  3. thanks I just did this and its fantastic! I bought a pair of jeans that were 4" too long cus it was a great deal! now I can finally wear them instead of the great deal sitting in a bag!

    Posted on September 7, 2012 at 10:51 pm
  4. How does one do this with boot-cut jeans or other flared legs?

    Posted on February 19, 2011 at 6:22 pm
  5. I tried this with my jeans and it works so good. I put some pictures of the jeans I hemmed on my blog and linked your blog there.

    Posted on February 1, 2011 at 1:10 am
  6. Hi, I found your blog through Totally Tutorials. Thank you for posting this, it is so helpful! I've got some jeans that need hemming, so I'm going to try this soon.

    Posted on January 31, 2011 at 9:14 pm
  7. That is awesome! Especially since most home sewing machine cannot do that extra long stitch length. Thanks for sharing. Bookmarking this for sure.

    Posted on January 28, 2011 at 2:39 am
  8. This is such a good way to hem! Thanks for the tutorial!!

    Posted on January 28, 2011 at 1:00 am
  9. Love this! Perfect way to hem pants on a growing child as well! Thanks so much for the directions and photos!

    Posted on January 28, 2011 at 12:42 am
  10. i just figured out how to do this so they look profesh and real. been doing this all over the place lately. love it! great tutorial too:)

    Posted on January 7, 2011 at 9:36 pm