How to Properly Hem a Hem or Cover Seams(Hong Kong Seams) Using Bias Tape, Couture Style

I have mentioned before I want a coverstitch. Coverstitch machine is the queen of hems but I have to admit I always appreciate a hand sewn one.

Basicly, most of the times you’ll see hand sewn hems on my garments and it’s just a matter of an obsession I have. I know that some of you may laugh by reading these but I love how they make the garment hang.

Let’s see my favourite way.

I use this technique to hem my pants (as you’ve seen them here), or sleeve hems (like below). Can be used even to cover seams, then are called «Hong Kong seams». I love it because it gives nice weight and because I’m a sucker for details.

You’re gonna need some store bought bias tape or make your own (I’m gonna soon show you how to make bias tape very easy with leftover fabric). Here I used my me made one.

The crease line you see on grey fabric is where I decided I want my hem. Iron it to crease and continue from here.

I don’t pre cut my tape, I fingure open, pin right sides together aligning its end with garment’s end all around.

I sligtly fold the fabric with my fingers and feed it through the machine (this because I don’t pre cut the bias and that is just my trick). If you want even smoother seam in the end, before folding the edge, just clip the tiny corners, as it looks in the picrure. Using straight stitch along the crease of bias tape sew all the way.

In the end I reach my beginning, overlap my folded edge with a little bias tape and cut it with scissors, continue stitching and backstitch.

If you are using this technique in a straight seam you will just have to repeat the folded edge, like the beginning in order to end it.

Here’s the best part! Relax in front of the TV with your favourite brain free series (here I was watching Pretty Little Liars) fold the other crease of the bias and begin to blind catch stitch all around. Match your thread with your fabric and use relaxed moves, that will provide you the best results.

If you deal with a seam, specially if curved or for a lightweight fabric, go all by hand. That means skip all the machine part. Hand stitch with simple straight stitch, enclose the seam with the bias and finish with blind catch stitch as above. Here in the picture there is a sleeve head seam and you can see the whole process.

If you wonder why replace machine straight stitch with hand straight stitch its simply because hands do more delicate moves to manipulate fabric and also we result with two extra strands of thread in a seam than three if we involve the machine (upper + bobbin thread), that means less bulk.

Generally, let’s be honest, there’s no better chance of «proper hanging»-when everything else is correct chosen and done (don’t ya ever think that that’s an easy task!)- than involving hands.

What can beat hand? Hand sewing is Art. Do I curse machine hem? Absolutely NOT, I use it wherever I think won’t affect in a bad way my garment or I’m in a hurry … or just being lazy (happens a lot too!).

xo xo,



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