How to Hand Sew the Blind Hem Stitch (Slip Stitch)

learn how to do the HEMSTITCH

While machine sewing a hem can be faster, hand hemming give you a nearly invisible finish.  A hand hemming stitch called the slip stitch or blind hem stitch is practically invisible on both the inside and outside of the garment or project.

There are a few ways to do the blind hem stitch (slip stitch) but this is my favorite hemstitch method because the stitches are not conspicuous on the front or back of whatever is being hemmed.Blind Hem or Slip Stitch Tutorial - fb

When to use a blind hem or slip stitch:

  • Hemming pants, dresses, sleeves, etc.
  • Repairing a hem
  •  To sew the binding onto a quilt
  • Attach armhole or neckline facings
  • Attach lining to a garment

Learn more about and how to hand sew the blind hem stitch by watching our video Or keep reading this post for a pictorial tutorial with written instructions.

COMPLETE VIDEO TUTORIAL AVAILABLE! The video below is a preview with no audio, to watch the whole video tutorial, click the link How to Hand Sew the Blind Hem Stitch (Slip Stitch) to watch in Youtube.

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how to hand sew a hem using the blind hem stitch


  • Sewing Needle
  • Thread to Match Fabric
  • Scissor
  • Pins
  • Thimble (optional)

Blind Hem Stitch - Supplies

INSTRUCTIONS for hand stitching a hem with blind hem stitch

For this demonstration, I used an iron to fold the raw end under 1/4" and then folded and pressed the fabric under 2".  Of course, you would hem as per the pattern instructions or prepare the fabric as per your needs.  

Pinning the hem is a sure way to prevent the fabric from slipping as hand sewing the invisible stitch.  

Hemstitch - Pinned

Choose a thread that goes well with the color of the fabric.  Then, thread a needle with a single-thread and tie a small knot at one end of the thread.

What is a single-threaded needle?  Unravel as much length of thread as you need and cut it from the spool.  Push the end of the thread through the eye of the needle with your thumb and forefinger and knot only one end of the thread. 

Blind Hem Stitch - Matching Thread & Needle

If you have trouble threading a needle, there are numerous needle threaders on the market.  The one I like is the Clover Needle Threader.   This little tool will make threading needles a breeze and make your life easier.  

Hemming Stitch - Hide the knot To start the blind hem stitch (slip stitch) you are going to hide and anchor the knot. 

To anchor the knotted end of the thread, slip the threaded needle into the fold of the hem and exit through the crease.  Pull the thread through until the knot is hidden in the fold.

Blind Stitch - Catch Fabric Using the tip of the needle, pick up one or two threads of fabric directly across from where the knot exited the fold.  These threads are the part of the stitch that shows on the right side of the project.  

Blind Hem Stitch - Pull ThroughPull the thread gently but firmly so the stitch is secure.  Don’t pull it too tight or else your fabric will pucker.

Blind Hem Stitch - Needle in Folded FabricReinsert the needle into the fold where the last stitch came out or close to where the last stitch was and run the needle through the fold about 1/4" to 1/2".  

Blind Hem Stitch - Catch Fabric again Pull the thread gently through the fold.  The thread is hidden.

Blind Hem Stitch - Catch Garment Again pick up a few stitches of fabric directly across from where you exited the fold.  

Blind Hem Stitch - Catch Folded Fabric 2Slip the point of the needle back down through the folded fabric on the hem side tunneling about 1/4" to 1/2". 

Blind Hem Stitch - Needle through Folded Fabric 2 Once again, bring the needle out from the fold on the crease.  The thread will be hidden.

Continue stitching in the manner until you run out of thread or get to the end of the hem.  Make a knot at the end.

Each stitch should be the same distance apart, so the thread dots are evenly spaced on the right side of the fabric.

Blind Hem Stitch - Finished Back A closeup example of the back of the fabric after doing the blind hem stitch.

Blind Hem Stitch - Finished Front A closeup at the front of the fabric after hemming with blind hem stitch. The stitches are almost invisible.

Blind Hem Stitch - Finished Front 2 Another picture of the blind hem stitch.

This is my favorite stitch when hemming anything.  It is easy!  It is invisible!  It looks professional!

You can do this?
Any Questions about the hemming or the slip stitch? Please let me know.


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Blind Hem or Slip Stitch Tutorial - pin

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