Blind Hem Stitch (with a sewing machine)


First of all…….thank you, thank you for all of the help, advice, personal experiences, etc. with the PC vs. MAC debate (here).  We weighed the pros, the cons, thought about what we use our computer for, how soon we’ll have to get another computer anyway, etc.   (And haha, it WAS like starting a discussion about politics or religion.  There is a definite opinion on both sides……and I loved reading it all.)  However, we finally decided. Whew…..what a relief.  A new little beauty is on its way in the mail.  I’ll let you know if we’re happy with our decision.  Thanks again for helping us out.  Again…….I could squeeze you all.  In a nice way…….not in a tube-of-toothpaste sort of way.

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Do you sometimes wonder how those almost invisible hems are sewn into slacks?

Bottoms of curtains?

Occasional hems of high-quality dresses?


Well, wonder no more.





It really isn’t too hard to do. All it takes is a few images to see how it’s done and get it straight in your brain, and you’ll wonder why you’ve never used the blind hem stitch before.




What?!!  You can’t see the seam about an inch and a half from the bottom edge?!?!

Good. That’s the point.




Ready to learn how to make the Blind Hem Stitch??


First of all, look on your sewing machine to be sure you have this stitch…




Then, to make the stitch, it makes it easier if you have the special Blind Hem Stitch Foot in your collection of sewing feet.  However, if you don’t have one, you can still do this stitch without it.  You’ll just need to sew a little more slowly.  And measure a bit more carefully.


Here’s what my Bernina Blind Hem Foot looks like.  Notice that vertical bar that goes right between the two feet.

If you want to buy one, try a universal one like this one……..just be sure it will fit your machine.  $10 isn’t so bad when it comes to making hemming easier.  And neater.



Okay, now to get started, you will need to first fold up your hem (whatever the seam allowance is for the project you’re working on).  You can serge or zig-zag the bottom edge and then fold your fabric up once………or fold it up twice (like I did) to hide that very bottom edge.  Iron flat.




Next, pin that fold in place……..placing the sharp point of the needle down towards the bottom fold of the hem.



Then fold that entire hem under (towards the front side of the fabric) leaving about an 1/8 to a 1/4 inch of the fold showing at the bottom edge.




Now, turn your fabric sideways…..



…….and slide this bottom edge under your needle and blind hem presser foot.  Line up that folded edge of the fabric (the fold that’s the wrong side of the fabric) right up against the guide on the presser foot………and then the rest of that fabric to the right, under the presser foot.  As you sew, keep that folded edge right against the guide.




And as you get to a pin, pull it on out with your free hand.  This is why you pinned them the way I showed above… you could have easy access to them.




You will start noticing that there is a nice straight edge over to the right and then every few stitches, there is a zig-zag stitch that reaches over and grabs that fold of fabric.  See that?



Now, if you fold that bottom edge back down from being hidden on the other side……you will see this.




And then, if you flip the fabric over………your bottom hem will look like this.  There are tiny little tacks of thread, keeping the hem in place.




But hardly noticeable if you use the same color thread as your project.  See that?  Or wait, is it hard too see?  Good.



Just be sure to iron/steam the bottom edge really well.


And that’s it.


A nice and un-noticeable hem.  Ahhhhhh…….



**Now, remember…….you can totally do this if you don’t have the blind hem stitch foot. But you will need that certain stitch on your sewing machine, like I showed above.  Practice a few times by folding your fabric just like I did above and then feed your fabric underneath your standard presser foot so that the zig-zag stitch barely catches that fold of fabric.  Adjust as needed and keep it straight and steady.  Good luck!


And if you don’t have the blind hem stitch on your sewing machine…….just create a straight seam hem.  Or, create the same invisible look by hand, with a needle and thread.  (Tutorials found here.)



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193 Responses to “Blind Hem Stitch (with a sewing machine)”
  1. 1
    Tawnya says:

    Honestly, I started to learn this an hour before church on my husbands slacks. Now with a better visual than my machine’s book, I’ll be able to finish!

  2. 2
    Dianna says:

    I couldn’t ever figure out how to do this well by hand and it seemed crazy that a machine would be able to do it. Go figure! Thank you for the help!

  3. 3

    I’ve ALWAYS wondered how a machine blind hem stitch worked – – thanks so much for sharing!

  4. 4
    Kim says:

    Ah, thank you so much! My machine diagrams are so confusing – this little step-by-step cleared everything right up!

  5. 5
    marni says:

    i was randomly JUST WONDERING how this worked – i can’t wait to try it out (and check to see if i have the proper foot)! thanks so much for posting this tutorial!

  6. 6
    Robin says:

    never knew a machine could do the blind hem. i think i should dust off my machine and use it once in a while.

  7. 7
    sharon k says:

    Thanks so much for showing how tomake this hem!! I just got anew machine and was getting ready to attemt it with a dress of hers. Great timeing!

  8. 8
    Kiersten says:

    I knew my machine could do it, but the diagrams and instructions in my manual are so confusing I’ve never tried it. Now I get it! Thanks!

  9. 9
    June says:

    I love the blind hem stitch!! I’ve done yards and yards of blind hemming on my machine, but never with a blind hem attachment. I’ve got the attachment but until now, never knew what it was for. Thanks!!

  10. 10
    Liesel says:

    Whhhaat?! You aren’t going to tell us what you chose for a computer? The suspense!! I hate it.

  11. 11
    Danielle says:

    Thank so much! I’ve been needing to hem some pants but my last attempt by hand was a disaster. This sounds so much easier! Thanks!

  12. 12

    Thank you for sharing this. I have wondered how this works.

  13. 13

    Thank you! The hem just fell out on a cute pair of shorts and I was trying to figure out how to fix them. Great tutorial.

  14. 14
    kandyce says:

    i echo liesel. what did you get??

  15. 15
    Michele says:

    I always wondered how that was done too. Your pictures and tutorial are very helpful. I’ll give it a try!

  16. 16

    First of all, thank you so much for this tutorial! I know tutorials take a lot of time to write, but this is so helpful. I tried to find a tutorial for how to do this type of hem a couple months ago, but everything I found was so confusing and I just gave up. No one explained why you had to fold the fabric back and I couldn’t figure out how it wouldn’t just sew the hem to the rest of the fabric the wrong way. Now I understand! Woohoo!
    Secondly, very sly of you to leave everybody hanging about which computer you decided on. I hope you’ll eventually tell us and I hope you are super happy with whatever you chose. :)

  17. 17
    Meagan says:

    Awesome!!!!!! thanks!!!

  18. 18

    Thanks Ashley! I have a simple machine, and I this is the only stitch I haven’t used. I used it when making my lace bathroom curtains, but I just took a chance and sewed a normal hem haha. I knew what it was supposed to do, but I never thought to look for instructions. So exciting, I’m actually looking forward to hemming my next project when it’s normally the yukky part of sewing!

  19. 19
    Erin says:

    That fabric is so fresh and cheery! Who makes it?

  20. 20
    kim says:

    THANK YOU! I can not even tell you how thankful I am for this tutorial. You have just saved me a bunch of $ in alterating costs.

  21. 21
    Veterkins says:

    I just did an entire crib layette set and used my blind hem stitch! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! Was worried that I didn’t do it quite right, but looking at what you have – I DID, I DID! Now I need to find the foot that you used to go on my Bernina!

  22. 22
    Karen says:

    I recently got a new machine and was trying to figure this out earlier today. Your instructions are much better than my book.

  23. 23
    katy says:

    This is so helpful! I want to go hem something just for the heck of it. Great tutorial. Thanks!

  24. 24
    Sue says:

    Thanks Ashley! I never knew what that foot was for or how to do a blind hem stitch. It’s nice to finally connect the two.

  25. 25
    Beth says:

    I have that stitch and that foot!! Now I know exactly how to use it…yayy!!! As always, a BIG thank you for the wonderful (and clear) tutorial and pictures! Smiles~Beth

  26. 26
    Melanie C says:

    Thanks for the tutorial! Now I’m ready to try this again…my manual was NOT clear.

  27. 27
    Rhonda says:

    This is so great. I’ve always wanted to try this but wasn’t quite sure how to use the stitch – thanks!

  28. 28
    Liesel says:

    thanks. I needed this one.

  29. 29
    Tanya H. says:

    I’ve found using invisible thread makes the blind hem stitches even less visible, especially on very smooth fabrics.

  30. 30
    adelina says:

    thank you! that was SUPER helpful.

  31. 31
    Kristina Noall says:

    I love all the awesome new things I learn by reading this blog, and how doable you make them! It’s so empowering!

  32. 32
    Tracy says:

    I can’t even tell you how much I appreciate this post and it is PERFECT timing. My husband has 3 pants the have been waiting….not to patiently for some bling hems. My hand sewing stinks. Can’t wait for sewing group tomorrow!!
    THANK YOU Ashley!

  33. 33
    Selina says:

    That is far too clever. Thank you for showing us!

  34. 34
    Robie Dodson says:

    Oh my goodness, I love this!!! Thank you so much!

  35. 35
    Coreen says:

    I love you, I love you, I love you! I’ve tried to do the stitch before on my machine but didn’t realize I was supposed to fold the fabric back, so I’ve been hemming by hand. You have made my life so much easier!

  36. 36
    Anonymous says:

    You just became my most favorite person, it has been a long time and now I truly understand how to use that stitch and that foot! Thank you for showing us.

  37. 37
    Joanne says:

    What a fantastic tute! I shall be blind hemming everything from now on – love it. Thanks :)

  38. 38
    Danielle says:

    I have that foot and didn’t know what it was for! I also have the stitch! Can’t wait to hem now… I always do it by hand. Thanks so much!

  39. 39
    Zerique says:

    This is absolutely fabulous!!! I am very petite person and can never ever find pants in my length!!!! So I will be using this!!!

  40. 40
    Becki says:

    Thank you for doing this! My handbook and other people demonstrating to me how to do the blind hem stitch has left me afraid of even attempting this! You have explained it very simply with easy to follow pictures and instructions. I am adding this to my favorites and with you permission linking back to your site from mine. Thank you, again. I feel a a bit more confident now in creating good looking hems for anything!

  41. 41
    Shaina says:

    Oh, this is just lovely. Thank you!

  42. 42
    caturs says:

    That was so brilliant! I never thought that it was the purpose of that stitch!

  43. 43
    Christine says:

    So that’s what that foot is for! I always wondered how they did that.

  44. 44
    Jennifer says:

    Thanks!!! Have tried doing this stitch before using the instruction manual that came with my machine and got frustrated and gave up. I am so excited b/c I think that I will be able to do it now for sure after reading your tutorial:-).

  45. 45
    Anonymous says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I’ve tried it a few times, but never got it right. Do you think it will work with knits too?

  46. 46
    emma says:

    YOU my friend!!! are awesome!!!

  47. 47
    Amy R says:

    Oh thank you! What kind of sewing machine do you have? I am looking at buying one and I am clueless as to what is good.


  48. 48
    Amy R says:

    Oh, found it on your FAQ’s. Thanks for the tip!

  49. 49
    kelli west says:

    I am excited about this. i am going to go see if my machine came with the foot. I am hoping it did!! :) Love all the helpful hints you give us, and the step by step pictures. It REALLY helps me out because I’m a little lame when it comes to sewing, but i enjoy the stuff i can create. By the way, I had bought your tie tutorial and made my twin boys ties for easter. Everybody LOVED them. I will have to send you some pictures!! And the tutorial was so helpful, i loved all the pictures! :D

  50. 50
    Amy says:

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! I was actually getting my manual out tonight to figure this out! I have the stitch setting, and the foot needed (I think!) so I knew there was a way to do it. You just save me a lot of trouble my dear! Thank you!

  51. 51
    Anonymous says:

    I am an over 60 reader, and always surprised with how much information I get from your blog. The info serves as refresher courses and new ways to do something. Love your sense of creativity and tutorial skills.
    Thanks so much.


  52. 52

    I just tried on a pair of shorts that have been hanging in my closet since last summer (you’re in CO too, so you know how hot it’s been). I couldn’t remember why I haven’t pulled them out sooner. Oh right… the hem is coming out on one of the legs. I didn’t have time to figure it out, but now I can fix ’em and maybe wear them tomorrow.

  53. 53
    sue says:

    this is the first tute I have seen and it is absolutely awesome you have set a high standard for me hope the others hold up
    thanks sue

  54. 54
    Kendra says:

    When I do a blind hem on my machine, I sometimes sew a basting stitch a little ways in from the hem. That keeps everything nice and straight. Hard to explain without a picture, sorry!

  55. 55
    Natalie Clark says:

    Bless you! Yet again, you’ve answered a burning sewing question for me before I even ask. Thank you! Your blog is my favorite and you inspire me to have confidence in my hand-made items. I love everything you post. Have a wonderful day!

  56. 56
    Marissa says:

    You’re a doll!! Thank you, thank you, thank you for these instructions!

  57. 57
    Mimi says:

    Oh! My! Gosh! This is perfect!! I need some new curtains in the bathroom and I am going to try this technique – yessiree! Thank you! I have just signed up to follow you via Google Friends and am looking forward to future posts!!

  58. 58
    Shannon says:

    This is a totally beautiful tutorial. Thanks so much for sharing it.

  59. 59
    Heather says:

    OMG! Thank you so much!!!! I make a TON of curtains! You may have just changed my life!

  60. 60
    Jennifer C says:

    That is stinken’ awesome! I do believe my sewing machine has that stitch too!

  61. 61
    Pam says:

    Thank you so much for this tutorial! I can’t believe I’ve been sewing curtains all these years and not used this funciton on my sewing machine. I’m so excited to try it out; yippee!!! :)

  62. 62
    Hilary says:

    Beautiful and clear tutorial. I might add that on a brother if you are not catching the fabric with the zig zag part you adjust the stitch width to become more NARROW….Makes no sense to me, maybe there is an obvious reason for this, maybe not, but it took me about 3 garments of thinking it would be faster by hand as every time I tried to make the stitch wider to catch the fabric is still missed! I don’t know if this is true for all blind hems on all machines, but I would love to save brother users all the frustrations I went through…
    Btw, what is the fabric you are using in these photos? So bright and happy looking.

    • 62.1
      Kim Possible says:

      Thank you Hilary. I’m attempting my first sewing maching blind stitch today. I usually hem by hand, but really want to conquer this. You probably saved me ton of time by mentioning the NARROW stitch width :) Thank You!

  63. 63
    louise says:

    too funny! I just posted about this on the same day…I just learned how this weekend and I’m in love!!! :) not sure why I have avoided these all these years of sewing…

  64. 64
    Libby says:

    yes! now I know what that crazy foot is for! thank you!!

  65. 65
    Cherish says:

    Thank you Thank you Thank you for this post. Teaching myself to sew and tried to do this about a week ago. Was a huge fail. Will try again now that I have better instructions and pictures.

  66. 66
    Margaret says:

    Thank you so much for this very clear tutorial! I just finished practicing this stitch on my machine and it works beautifully even without a special foot. I can’t tell you how timely this is as I have 3 pairs of slacks to hem this afternoon. Thanks again!

  67. 67

    what we use computer for… when we’ll be getting another one anyways… You picked PC and aren’t brave enough to tell us ;)

  68. 68
    Rebecca says:

    you are AMAZING! Thanks so much for this tutorial! I’ve read directions time and time again about how to do this, and just COULD NOT visualize it! You made it crystal-clear and easy. I’m so grateful and I want to start a project right now so I can try it out!

  69. 69
    Swagata says:

    I have been looking at blind hem tutorials for ages and not getting the hang of it. Thank u so much for taking the effort of a beautifully clear tutorial with excellent pics. Infact the pics did all the talking. Couldnt have been clearer

  70. 70
    Angie says:

    LOVE IT… thank you for the detailed, beautifully photographed tutorial!! I will be using technique this TODAY!!

  71. 71
    Becky says:

    I am enlightened. Thank you!

  72. 72
    Kimberly says:

    Wow, that is awesome! I do believe I have that stitch and I might even have that foot. I had no idea that’s what they were for. I’m so excited for this, I hate hemming by hand! Thanks a lot!!

  73. 73
    Casey says:

    Thank you so much for this tutorial. I have always been confused why it’s called a blind hem stitch. I never realized you had to fold the fabric back and stitch it like that, now it makes perfect sense. I hope that foot came with my sewing machine! Thanks again!

  74. 74
    D-M says:

    Genius, Madame! Pure genius. I HATE hand hemming, and now I may never have to again. I… I love you!

  75. 75
    suzana says:

    awesome tutorial :)

  76. 76

    I totally didn’t even know what foot #5 was. Now I know and I’ll use it to hem those curtains that I’ve been meaning to hem for months!! Awesome timing on the tutorial I think I can get to it here soon!!

  77. 77
    Beth says:

    Awesome. I am reworking a couple of skirts (eventually) and this will be incredibly helpful.

  78. 78
    Jen says:

    I looked at three tutorials and two videos, and yours is the only one that made sense to me. Thanks for clear photos and instruction.

  79. 79
    Kristina Noall says:

    I just tried it with a regular foot and it worked! I LOVE learning new things! My machine is used and didn’t come with a manual, so I have no idea what a lot of the stuff on it is for. Thanks for solving one more mystery! (Lol. And I also was planning to add length to a skirt, two hours before church, but then didn’t have enough material anyway. But at least that made me slow down and practice, since I couldn’t do the actual project.)

  80. 80
    Amy C says:

    Thank you for this tutorial. I learned how to do this 8+ years ago when I first got my machine, but I never used it, and forgot how to do it. Last week I needed to hem some of my husbands dress pants and also my sons suit pants. Your tutorial worked like a charm! Thank you so much!

  81. 81
    Emilee says:

    Awesome!!! Thank you so much! I just did it and it was easy thanks to you and your awesome tutorial-making skills. Seriously! You are the best!!!

  82. 82
    Ms Kate says:

    Oh I am so excited! I just used this tutorial and hemmed my hubby’s pants! Sounds silly to be so excited, but saved us money getting them taken up, and oh they look so neat :) Awesome tutorial! Thank you.

  83. 83
    Melanee says:

    What a fabulous tutorial! I had no idea I could do a blind hem with my machine. Just tried it on my first pair of dress pants and it worked so well. Your blog is seriously a gold mine!!

  84. 84
    YK says:

    This is absolutely the best and easiest blind hem tutorial that I have seen. Kudos and thank you!!

  85. 85
    Rachel says:

    Thank you so much for these great instructions! My husband has needed a pair of slacks hemmed for weeks and I’ve been afraid to try fixing it myself (I even resorted to the super-crappy iron-on hem tape which held it in place for a whopping 40-ish minutes). This was exactly what I needed, and they came out great!

  86. 86
    Jessica says:

    Thank you so much! I am very new to sewing (as in a week) and I’m already being hit up to hem pants but I’m staring at slacks and saying “how on earth do you do this?!” You are a lifesaver!

  87. 87
    Maimie says:

    Thank you so much – I love your tutorials! My grand-daughter asked me to shorten a new pullover shirt that was too long – this is perfect. I never knew how to do this. I used to sew clothes quite a few (many – many) years ago, but found it was easier to just buy them. I just mostly just repair and hem things for the family now. Thanks again for a great blog.

  88. 88
    Gramma Joanie says:

    I never thought to use my stitch in the ditch foot for this. Brilliant! Now I have to make my granddaughter a dress. Thanks!

  89. 89
    Amanda says:

    Oh my WORD…life CHANGED! LOL. I have been hemming for years and always just put up with the stitches at the bottom because I could not figure out how to fold the fabric to do the blind hem!! I have studied the diagram in both my sewing machine and serger manuals countless times. I would think I had it, do the stitch, unfold the hem…and failure. Every time. This was exactly the visual I needed! Thanks sooo much!!

  90. 90
    Lisa says:

    Thankyou so so so much for making this! You have no idea how grateful I was to find this. My husbands grandmother gave me a pair of high quality slacks to hem, after being told by her to just do a straight stitch, I decided I’d learn to do a blind hem, and you taut me in under 4 minutes! It’s even, even!

  91. 91
    Jessica says:

    This is such a great tutorial. So easy to follow. Thanks!

  92. 92
    elizabeth783 says:

    Thank you so much! I just got my new machine (being at least 16 years since I last sewed – in my teenage years) – my first project was to fix pant hems using this stitch — so easy!! Thank you so much!

  93. 93
    Franny says:

    This is by far the best instructions for a blind hem seam. thanks so much.

  94. 94
    Esther says:

    Magic, love it! Like I needed another excuse to buy more sewing gear ;-)

  95. 95

    I have struggled with this for years. Your instructions were easy to understand. Can you help me with Algebra?

  96. 96
    Shelby says:

    Great tutorial! I practiced on a piece of scrap fabric and it turned out great! Then I thought of a skirt I hadn’t worn for ages that needs hemming. I got it prepped and started hemming, but I ran into a problem. The skirt is a very full, A-line, riding-type skirt with a curved hemline, so even though it was pinned it was bunching up. Can this hemming be done on a curved hemline by machine or am I going to have to do it by hand? I was so hoping to do it by machine (the main reason why I haven’t tackled it up until now is because I didn’t want to do it by hand.) Help!!

  97. 97
    Peg H. says:

    This might be my all-time favorite tutorial! I’ve been trying to figure this out for years, but my sewing machine’s manual makes NO sense to me. NOW I can do that blind-hem stitch. THANK YOU!

  98. 98
    Ylvsta says:

    Hi Ashley, thank you for your many excellent instructions & the inspiration to sew, sew, sew! (and make use of old scraps!)

    I’m wondering if maybe there’s another way to do the blind hem stitch thing, in that it depends on the machine?

    My manual (for Janome Decor Excel II 5024) has the fabric going the other way. Yet since it also seems to end up with a jagged edge, I thought I’d go w/ your method, since the result is so nice + clean.

    I’m still in a muddle, basically, and I’m wondering if it could be the machines – our feet look the same, but the way you place the fabric looks different…

    Any tips welcome! :-)=

  99. 99
    Ylvsta says:

    Ok, i get this – i swear i do… it just won’t work in practice. Maybe i need to sleep on it. The zigzags must not show thru, the zigzags must not show through…

  100. 100
    Jill says:

    Thanks for a really clear explanation of how to do the blind hem stitch. I especially liked how you showed using a Bernina because that’s what I have. Only, I’ve been looking at the hem’s on pants I’ve bought and the thread seems to be slimmer and more delicate than the thread I have. And it seems to show less than with the thread I’ve have been using for blind hem stitch. Can I get thinner thread like is used by the manufacturer of my pants?