DIY: 10 Steps on How to Hem Pants (Wide Leg)

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Are your pants always too long on you? Tired of paying to have them altered? Wondering how to DIY? Well you have come to right spot! I took a pair of wide leg jeans that were too long and I will show you how to hem them perfectly in only 10 steps! Pay attention as this process is different depending on the leg opening of your pants!

FYI-The original hem on these jeans was about 2” wide…

Original Hem

Step 1: Put on your pants and measure your inseam on your body to see where you want the pant hem to hit. Tip= Try to have someone help you because as you bend over to measure you will be hiking up the pants slightly which could throw off your measurement. Put a mark (either in tailors chalk or with a safety pin). Tip= Be sure to wear the shoes you want as heels will differ from flats
Step 2: Take off the pants and draw a straight line across where the pin/mark is using a ruler. Do on both legs.
Step 3: Rip out the original hem using a seam ripper or small scissors.

Draw your lines!

Step 4: Decide on the width of your new hem and draw a chalk line from the Finish line to there (this will be your Hem line). Tip= Since these are wide leg pants you cannot do a wide hem without having to also take in the side seams so I decided to keep it a 1” hem instead of a 2” wide hem.
Step 5: Add your seam allowance (I left 1/2”) after the Hem line (this will be your Cut line)
Step 6: Cut along your cut line
Step 7: Fold on the Finish line and press flat with an iron

Fold on Finish Line & Press
Fold on Finish Line & Press

Step 8: Fold under the 1/2” seam allowance of the Hem line and pin along the edge. Then press this flat as well. Tip= Be sure to miter your corners before you pin so there is not a lot of bulk on the stitch line.



Step 9: Stitch the hem down right along the edge of the hem line. Tip= Use the same color thread as was originally on the hem or if you want a contrast go for it!


Step 10: Turn pants inside out and press flat! Voila! Perfectly hemmed jeans!diy-wide-hem-7

Did you enjoy this blog? Want to see more sewing tips? Please comment below and let me know so I can post what you want! Pass on the love <3

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14 thoughts on “DIY: 10 Steps on How to Hem Pants (Wide Leg)

  1. Ally says:

    I’ve had this problem for as long as I can remember, Jr high school at least! I’m 5’2″, 125 lbs and I but jeans usually a size higher than I need, because I love loose pants.
    My jeans are really wide and baggy in the legs, and I always wear flared jeans. All of my jeans drag on the ground, I gave up back in high school and just walked on the backs of my jeans. I also wear my overalls a lot, be and those are wicked big and baggy on my ass well. My overalls tend to swamp my shoes, so the hems on my overalls are super tattered and worn!

      • Ally says:

        No that’s how I like to wear my jeans and overalls. All of us seem to wear really big jeans and super baggy overalls here also. If you saw my group of friends out in public, be all of us would be walking all over our hems!

  2. Wanda Lopipero says:

    I’ve been asked to hem 2″ on a pair of wide hippie bell-bottom pair of jeans that are frayed at the bottom. I don’t want to lose the width and the bell is not straight across. It has an added piece to make it flare more than usual. To make it more complicated, I am not a professional seamstress but take on challenges every once in a while. Also, I cannot cut off 2″ from above or below the knee because the jeans have a 1″ stripe of five different colors. In this knee area, there is not a 2″ space to cut out. This is way above my pay grade. Can you give me some advice so she won’t be disappointed?
    Thank you.
    P.S. These wide bells are shown on the internet to give you a better idea of the shape. The striped colors are rust, black, white, grey and tan.

    • Christine Daal says:

      Hi Wanda, this is difficult to answer without seeing what these jeans look like. You mention it has, “an added piece to make it flare more than usual”. Is this piece perhaps a godet insert? if so my suggestion would be to cut off 2 inches from the bottom, then re-insert another godet insert (perhaps you can use some of the part you cut off) to add back to the width at the hem. You may not be able to keep the exact width but at least it will be slightly wider. This is my best guess without seeing what this looks like. Hope it helps

  3. Abby says:

    My daughter brougt a pair of flare jeans wich is 3 inches too long.
    She wants to keep it wide end but that isn’t possible if we have to cut it ti shortten it.
    Tips please! Thank you. 🙂

    • Sharon Lopez says:

      Hi Abby, have you thought about cutting the ends so it fits her length and then cutting slits on the side so it can still have that flare effect? That would be my best suggestion as flare with slits on the side is still trendy!

  4. Jackie Dittberner says:

    I have a pair of flared pants with a beautiful border I would like to keep intact but I need to shorten them without losing the boarder.

    • Sharon Lopez says:

      Hi Jackie, Sounds like a hard task to do but if they are pants, I wonder how you feel about searching “diy flare pants.” If there is a lot of fabric, you may be able to create a new waist and inseam. I believe this may be the only option without losing the border but definitely match the pair with another pair of pants and see much fabric you’ll have. Hope this helps.

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