Save money on tailoring and hem stuff by yourself

I’m starting to realize that a lot of you don’t know about this little tip.

Sorry! I’m taking for granted that everyone knows about no sew hemming tape.. but that’s a problem on my end, not yours.

So, to save money on hemming (at the very least, because I’m assuming you know how to sew on a button or fix a rip).. you should head out to your local fabric store and buy something called “no sew hemming tape” that costs about $1 for a small roll (you really won’t need much) and $3 for a roll like what is pictured below.

It looks like this:

What this is, is like a strip of super fluffy strands of woven glue that has dried.

How it works, is that you will place it where you want the pants to be hemmed, and as if it was being sewn, your iron and some steam will MELT the glue and glue the hem down, resulting in a cheater’s hem 😉

You can also do the same thing with a needle and thread.. but the results aren’t as crisp.

What you will need

  • 2 Safety Pins
  • An iron and.. an ironing board
  • No Sew hemming tape
  • Scissors
  • Undyed piece of white cloth or old t-shirt.
  • Water (either in a cup or preferably, in a spritzer)

Steps to hemming your own clothing
1. Get into the item you want to hem, like your pair of pants.

2. Fold up the pants by tucking the ends UNDERNEATH, so that you can get an idea of what it’d be like if it were hemmed properly.

Do NOT fold out the pants the other way with the hem showing while they’re on.

No no.

This is easier if you have a friend. You can stand up straight, or in heels and she or he, can be down there to help fold it.

3. Decide if you are going to wear heels or not, and hem your pants according to the length (1″ above the ground)

4. Taking a grip of the hem at the back of your ankle, NOT tugging it down hard, but also not making it too loose/lax, adjust the pants you are wearing until you feel comfortable in them.

Then, pin the safety pin right at the crease you would like for the rest of your pair of pants.

Do the same for the other side when you’re done, or if you want to make sure they’re perfectly even across, you can do the eying up on the ironing board.

5. Eye up the pants on the ironing board, and fold them so that the hems look perfectly straight, even across both pant legs and are folded in nice and tight.

Do a quick crease with your fingernail to make sure the hems don’t come undone while you’re fiddling around on the ironing board. It’s a pain in the butt to have to re-fit the pants again once you remove the pins.

Alternatively, you could use tailor’s chalk… but I never have any on hand, so safety pins it is.

6. Plug in the iron, get the water ready… and flip the pants INSIDE OUT so that you iron the tape and melt it so that it glues from the inside of your pants.

Remove the safety pins after that’s done, and be very careful not to drop the pants now.

7. Start measuring out the no sew hemming tape to the WIDTH of your pant hem (I usually do it all the way around, so 2 strips per pant leg as you will be ironing them flat).

Cut out 4 strips. 2 per leg hem.

8. Gently lift the hem and arrange the first strip underneath the hem flap.

Put the old t-shirt or cloth over the hem with the tape, spritz it lightly with water, and with the iron steaming hot, press down on the t-shirt and hold it for 5 – 10 seconds (depending on how hot you made it)

Lift up the t-shirt and check to see if the hemming tape melted and stuck, by gently lifting the hem with a finger. If it doesn’t come up, it’s good.

If it does, or you can see some of the tape showing.. do the iron press and steam again.

9. Repeat for all 4 pant hems, and you’re done!


It actually takes longer to explain than to actually do the deed.

Once you get the hang of it, no hem will stand in your way!

Plus, you save $15 per hem. Hello?

Can we say 2 Grande Frappucinos at Starbucks with some change to spare?

If you need visual help, here’s a quick pictorial on how to hem your own pants by The Meckley’s!



How annoying would it be if you couldn’t and had to redo the process each time!?!?

The hems also last a long time even if you wash the pants. I actually.. have.. never had the hems come apart in my 3 – 4 years of wearing my pants and washing them.


Either I bought some really fantastic no sew hemming tape, or I am just THAT GOOD. (Hah)


You can do this for anything — pants, skirts, curtains, tops that flap open and show the inside of the hem.. you name it!

I made curtains like that once. Super easy.

Usually, the straighter the item, the better, because you want to be able to get a good steam press down, to melt the glue through the fabric.

I always put a thin cloth or t-shirt above the hem because sometimes my iron leaks or I accidentally burn too much and I don’t want my clothes underneath to be ruined.


About the Author

Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver. I cleared $60,000 in 18 months earning $65,000 gross/year. Now I am self-employed, and you can read more about my story here, or visit my other blog: The Everyday Minimalist.