Denim DIY

How To Hem Your Jeans With The Original Hem

Tailoring you jeans is a must for the most chic among us, but as you know it can be an expensive and time consuming chore.

I’m sure many of you have thought “just a little shorter” would do the trick, but the thought of taking your jeans to tailor feels a little overdone.

In this article, we will show you exactly how to tailor your jeans using the original hem.

It’s simple, a good skill to know, and saves you the time and expensive of the tailor.

Looking for more DIY tips? Check out our Denim DIY section

 Hem your own blue jeans

Blue Jeans Ready to be Hemmed

What you will need to Hem Your Jeans

Having a small tailor’s tool kit is a best practice to have.

It’s inexpensive and comes in handy if you ever need to fix a small issue before going out.

Most tailors kits have the following…

  • Tape measure (not the construction kind)
  • Pins/Safety Pins
  • Needle & Thread (or sewing machine)
  • Iron
  • Jeans
  • 👍 Rule of Thumb Be sure to only do this method on skinny or straight jeans as it doesn’t work on bootcut or flares due to the fabric not being the same width around the ankle area.

     Measuring the Hem of Jeans

    Measuring the Hem of Jeans

    Step 1. Lie your jeans out on a flat surface and measure the inseam

    Note down how much you want to take off of the length and half it.

    Always remember not to include the actual hem itself in your measurements as you will not be taking any off the hem.

    It’s easier to do one leg at a time so you wont have to undo both if any mistakes are made.

     Measure the Hem of your jeans

    Measure the Hem of your jeans

    2. Fold the hem of your jeans inside out to the correct length you have measured

    In the example above, this would be measuring 1″ of the fold as I am taking off 2″ in total (do not include the hem itself in the measurement).

    Re measure from the crotch to just under the original hem that has been folded outwards and make sure it is your perfect length (minus the hem width itself).

    Do not measure right to the end of the jeans where the fold is, your jeans will not be this long as you are not sewing at the bottom of the fold.

    You might want to get an iron and make sure that the fold is flattened down.

    I personally use an old hair straightener quickly (be careful not to press it down for a long time so you don’t burn the denim) as it’s easier to put the plates each side and flatten it.

    Make sure the seams on the left and right side of the leg match up correctly to the hem once it’s folded.

    Now put some pins in all the way around to hold your fold in place.

     Stitching Your Jeans

    Stitching Your Jeans

    3. Now you are going to sew all the way around the hem.

    I have drawn some pink stitch marks on the image so you can see where to sew.

    You need to sew right under the hem, not on the actual hem itself.

    Sew just under it so you are only going through 2 pieces of denim (the folded bit).

    You can either do this by hand with a simple forward stitch secured at both ends or with a sewing machine.

    I personally do it by hand as it’s easier for me and it’s easier if you wish to let the hem down.

    It doesn’t matter which colour thread you use or how neat your sewing is as the stitching will be on the inside of the jeans and invisible on the outside.

    Be sure not to sew the leg opening together so opening ends up closed.

     Stitching Your Jeans

    Stitching Your Jeans

    4) Take out all of the pins once you have finished your sewing

    Now comes the tricky part.

    Fold the hem back down/in so the folded part you have sewn goes back inside the jeans.

    Get your iron or old hair straightener in my case and flatten it all out, you need to make sure you have flattened and pressed the hem down all the way around.

    If you have done it correctly it should look like the images below.

    Hemmed Jeans

    Blue Jeans with Hem

    Hemmed Jeans

    Hemmed Jeans

    Wrapping Up on Hemming Your Own Jeans

    Now you have a pair of original hemmed jeans.

    Since we didn’t cut the hem off and re attach it this is a perfect way to let the hem down again back to the original length if you need to.

    Have a suggestion? Email me at