Friday, March 25, 2011

Hemming Pants

I have that 'lucky' body type whereby I can either fit clothes to my waist or my height.  Ultimately I choose waist (of course) and end up hemming all my pants to make them shorter.  I remember, once, finding a pair of jeans that fit perfectly when I tried them on.  No adjustments necessary.  Alas, that's not the norm, so off to hem them I go.

I had no idea there was a tool designed to help you hem pants.  I'd always worn them to measure how much material needed to be cut and hemmed for the pants to fit right, remeasured after taking off the pants, pinned the line, drawn a line to cut on, cut the excess, then measured, pinned, invariably pinned the wrong side of my pants, pinned again, turned under the hem and pinned one last time.  Finally, the easy part: sewing.  After an hour or more my pants would be hemmed and I'd be annoyed enough that I'd avoid hemming another pair for as long as I could.

But I was looking at sewing notions a few days ago and came across this: it's called a sewing and knitting gauge and it cost $1.20.

And I just happened to have a pair of pants ready to be hemmed.  I put the pants on and pinned up the sides, so I knew where to begin, then I got out my new tool.  There's a plastic slier you put to the measurement you want, then you stick it inside the groove and make sure the fabric is the same height all around using that measurement.  It was very fast and required no pins.

I then decided where to cut for the hem, and used the measurements on the side of the tool to mark a pencil line for cutting.

After cutting, it was again easy to set the hem line, then turn down and pin the fabric.  This is the second point where pins were needed, rather than the third or fourth.

In a fraction of the time it would normally take me to hem pants, these were done!


Anonymous said...

I started hemming my pants again. for years i just stuck them in my socks, which looked weird, but i was too tired to care. i don't like pinning the pants but sewing them up is ok. it took me awhile to memorize the 'right' way to hem, so i wasn't measuring and repinning so often. so congrats!!! i don't use the tool, but i think i do it the same way using a tape measure.
-happy hemming, karin

patty said...

that looks like a neat little doohicky. i'd like to do more hemming and sewing, that sort of thing, but for me it's just such a CHORE! i wish i enjoyed it more!

Jessica Strider said...

Yeah, it is a lot of work. The sewing itself doesn't take long, but all the prep work! And then if something turns out badly it feels like such a waste.