These days, it seems that clothing manufacturers’ are making the legs of their dress slacks longer and longer. While the reasons for this are unclear, it is a fact that many people-especially those who buy their clothes off the rack-must have the legs of their dress slacks altered. While it may be quick and easy to simply take several pieces of clothing to a seamstress for altering, this can add up quite quickly. By keeping some easy tips in mind, you can hem your own slacks at home, for a fraction of the price!
Wear the Proper Shoes
Wearing the proper shoes when measuring the length to which the slacks need to be hemmed is one of the most important tips when it comes to altering pant length. Ideally, you should wear shoes that you anticipate wearing with the pants in question. Make sure that the pants fall to the appropriate length when the shoes are on-trying to determine correct pant length while barefooted almost always results in pants that are too short. A friend or family member can help you in this process. While wearing the appropriate shoes and standing tall, ask him or her to pin the pants in the proper position to allow for hemming.
Measure Twice, Cut Once
In some cases, you will not need to simply hem the pants, but may need to actually cut off some excess fabric. This is especially true in cases where the pants are exceptionally long. In this case, it is important to measure carefully before actually removing any of the fabric from the pants. Use a fabric marker to determine exactly where you will cut the fabric. In addition, consider running a tape measure around the entirety of the pant leg before cutting to ensure that the fabric being removed is of the same length at all locations.
Choose Thread that is of the Correct Color
Using thread that is of the correct color is another important tip to keep in mind when it comes to hemming pants. Since most dress slacks are designed to have a seam that is as minimally invasive as possible, choosing thread that matches the pants is of upmost importance. Compare the color of the pants being hemmed to the string that you are considering using. Comparing these two items in natural sunlight ensures the best results when selecting thread.
Evaluate Your Work
Always evaluate your work when the project has been finished. If you have worn shoes during the sizing process, measured correctly, and chosen the proper thread, chances are that your pants will be perfectly hemmed. If you identify a noticeable error in the hem of your slacks, you may want to consider pulling out the stitching, and starting over from scratch. While this may extend the amount of time required to finish the project, it will ensure that your slacks appear as if they were hemmed by a professional seamstress.