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The Beginners Guide to Hemming with a Sewing Machine

When you’re new to sewing a lot of guides can come across as confusing and ultimately put you off trying new techniques and stitches. Here at Sewing Direct, we aim to keep our guides as simple as possible to ensure that everyone has a chance to learn a fantastic life skill.

How to hem with a sewing machine is one of the most popular questions we get asked, which is why we have put together this guide. In 4 simple steps, we will teach you to single-fold hem with a sewing machine, as this is the most useful technique. This is because it can be used on woven and knit fabrics. 

Make Sure your Fabric Edge is Finished in some Capacity

The reason for this is simple, as the single hem is just a single fold of fabric, nothing gets enclosed. So with this in mind, by having the edge of your fabric finished in some sort of way you can improve the presentation. It will also help to prevent knit fabric from unravelling or woven fabric from fraying.

Use your sewing machine to run a zigzag stitch along the edge of your fabric to tidy it up in a quick and easy way.

Measure the Hem Allowance

We would recommend using a seam gauge to measure your hem allowance as it is the most accurate. You can also use a tape measure but be sure to double-check your measurements. Single fold hem would typically see a 1 cm and 1.5 cm allowance, however, deeper single hems have also been turned too. 

Regardless, it is important to remember that there will be one line of visible stitching on the right side of the fabric at the edge of your fabric’s raw edge.

Apply Pressure to the Single Fold Hem

Now you need to apply heat and pressure to the fabric in order to create a crisp fold to your hemline. Using an iron, press down on the fold whilst being careful not to knock any of the pins holding the hem in place. These are what are holding the fabric in place at the length you measured before.

Sew your Hem with a Sewing Machine

The final step is to begin sewing your hem allowance into place. By sewing a stitch line that is 2mm or 3mm less than your hem allowance, you ensure that it is securely caught in the stitches. To guarantee a straight stitch, use the marked lines on your sewing machine’s footplate. Sew with a medium-length stitch around the hem as you gradually pull the fabric through the machine.

Be sure to use a thread that suits the colour of the fabric you are hemming.

Need more Sewing Machine Advice? Get in touch today

If you need more guidance on not only how to get the most out of your sewing machine, but also how to take proper care of it, please get in touch with us today. Here at Sewing Direct, we treat all sewing machines as if they were our mothers, so you can be sure we will handle your pride and joy with due care and attention.

Sewing Direct Beeston
133 High Road, Beeston, Nottingham, NG9 2LL
Email: -Info@sewingdirect.co.uk
Sewing Direct Mansfield aka Sally Twinkle
1-5 Handley Arcade, Mansfield, NG18 1NQ
Email: -shop@sallytwinkle.co.uk
Are both a trading name of Sewing Direct Midlands Limited
Registered in England & Wales, Company number: 14625487
Registered Office 133 High Road, Beeston, Nottingham NG9 2LL
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