Want to learn how to hem your pants without taking them to a tailor or buying a sewing machine? You’re in the right place!
Note: This guide was created by TMM reader and contributor, Zack Pyle. Take it away, Zack!
You already know that short men need to get their clothes tailored to make them fit properly. Problem is, all those alterations can be expensive.
But if you’re a DIY kind of guy, you can probably do some of your own alterations.
If you’re under the average male height of 5’10” (177cm), a common problem is getting pants that fit. When you’re shorter than average, proper fit is crucial.
Not having a break, or having a small one in your pants one will keep your legs looking longer. It will also minimize “distractions” to look at at your feet and keep people’s eyes looking up!
Unfortunately until this point, you’ve either paid a good amount of money at your local tailor, or you’ve just dealt with your pants being too long.
I’m here to teach you how to hem your own dress pants.
I actually learned from my grandmother who was hemming my pants since I was little, and I finally decided that I should just learn. Now you can too!
Note: Before I begin, let me say that this is a little complicated. There is also a video that I have made at the end that might clear some things up if you have any questions. Also, don’t be afraid to ask if something doesn’t make sense!
Dress pants are pants without a visible stitch on the outside. To do this, you have to do something called a “blind stitch,” so let’s get started!
What You’ll Need:
How to Hem Your Own Dress Pants
The first step is to fold your pant leg inside to see how much you want to take off. To do this, put on your pants, fold the fabric inwards, then look in the mirror and adjust from there until you’re happy with the length.
From there, use pins to keep the pants in place while you take them off. In the picture below, you can see that I’ve pinned the right side at the length that I want (the left side is finished to show what we’re going for).
Next, turn the pants inside out and iron a new crease.
Take out the pins and unfold.
Using a seam ripper, rip the old hem seam.
After you do that, unfold the pant leg all the way.
Since the distance between the two creases was a good amount (around two inches), I just cut a 1/4″ from the end of the crease so it would fold over nicely. If your distance between creases isn’t a good amount, you can iron yourself a 1/4″ crease to fold over.
The reason that you want about two inches between your creases is so you aren’t sewing your hem at the very bottom of the pant leg. Having this extra fabric in there also allows you to make the pants longer in the future.
Fold the pant leg back up with a quarter inch crease tucked below, and get ready to start sewing!
Using thread that is the same color as your pants, cut about 24 inches of thread and tie a couple of normal knots on top of each other in one end so the thread doesn’t slip through the fabric.
You want to go through the “cuff” and then only through about two threads of the outside of the pant in a looping motion. That way only the tiniest bit of thread will show on the outside.
Once you make it all the way around, again, tie a couple of normal knots on top of each other so the thread can’t slip through the fabric.
This is what it will look like on the inside when you’re finished.
This is what it looks like on the outside when you’re finished. No seam!
If you are more interactive, here’s a video that I made with even more detail.
Questions About Hemming Your Own Dress Pants
Here are the answers to some common questions about hemming your own dress pants.
What Is the Best Way To Hem Dress Pants?
You can easily hem dress pants at home with some simple tools like an iron, seam ripper, scissors, thread and a sewing needle.
Can You Hem Pants Without a Sewing Machine?
Yes, you can easily hem your pants without a sewing machine.
What Length Do You Hem Pants?
Most guys look best with dress pants hemmed to a “partial break” length. This means your pants rest on top of your shoes, but they’re not so long that they cause excess fabric to bunch up around your ankles.