Back That Hem Up... Stitch Those Knits

Updated: Apr 20, 2021

What's up Seamsters!

Back at it again with a little knit stitch tutorial. FYI... I love knits. They are super cozy and always forgiving. I really had to dust off an old machine for this one and I was struggling because I did not really have the best needles for the job (needles matter!) ... but I made it happen!

Most of the Sew & Tell knitwear patterns require a 1/2" turned hem and there's a few ways to hem those babies and I wanted to get down and dirty to explain just how you can back that hem up!

Like I said, I dusted off an old sewing machine because I really only use one of these techniques to finish my knits. Now don't fret, everyone has a different machine set up so just follow along for the knit hem style that works for you.

Single Needle Ziggity-Zag

Single Needle Ziggyity-Zag Stitch Front

Look, I don't want to insult anyone but this is definitely the most home-sewn look for hemming knits, which is another thing that makes me a bit twitchy. But hey, not all machines can handle a double needle (style two) and a coverstitch machine (style 3) might be a dream piece of machinery that you've yet to obtained. I get it and I'll accept that.

Sew, single needle zig-zag stitch it is!

Slip it into the machine and let it rip!

It's super easy too. Set up your machine to a narrow, but long zig-zag stitch.

Play around with a scrap of fabric and see what works best with the kind of stretch in your fabric. A light jersey or hachi will need a lot more stretch than a ponte.

With those machine stitches set up, turn the raw edge of your hem up and back towards the wrong side of your fabric.

**It's not a real biggie if you stitch with the wrong or right side of your fabric up as long as your stitches look the same. If they are better on the top then sew with the right side facing up.

Slide your fabric into your machine hem first and slam on the gas. Just be sure that you catch at least the raw edge of your hem within the zig-zag stitching on the backside of your fabric.

That's a