DIY: How to Raw Hem Your Jeans

The raw hem jean trend is seriously the best thing that has ever happened to me. Between my short legs and looking for new ways to refresh old denim, being able to raw hem my own jeans has been a game changer.

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tips for raw hemming your jeans

Levi's 501 Skinny Jeans

How many times have you purchased a new pair of jeans that were too long and you either A. kept forgetting to bring them to the tailor or B. never returned them, both situations ending with your jeans (most likely) collecting dust? As someone with legs that are short AF (here’s how I make them look longer), I know this story all too well. But thanks to the amazing trend of raw hem jean, my jeans are no longer collecting dust and jeans that I haven’t worn in months (even years!) are now getting all the TLC they deserve. I’m actually at the point that my friends poke fun at me for raw hemming all of my denim, but do you blame me? It’s looks so stinkin’ cute!

Itching to refresh your jeans with a raw hem? I promise it’s easy peasy!

What You’ll Need

Ripped Levi's 501 Skinn Jeans

The Length

Once you have all of your supplies, including a pair of jeans (new or old!), it’s time to find the perfect length. With your typically skinny jean, I aim for a little above the ankle bone but since this pair fits straighter through the leg, I opted to go a tad shorter! To figure out where you want your jeans to hit and how much to cut off, I like to put on the pair of jeans and cuff up the bottoms to my desired length.

how to DIY raw hem your jeans

Time to Cut

Now that you have the perfect length, it’s time to cut your jeans! Carefully pull the jeans off with the cuffs in tack and mark the inside of the fold with your pen, marker, or chalk. This will help you know where to cut when you unfold the cuff. Also, this 100% goes without saying, but make sure you cut in a straight line (unless you want to do a different shape hem). Once I’ve cut one leg, I will fold the jeans the long way to match up the legs and use it as a template for the second leg.

Tip: If you’re nervous you’re going to cut them too short, do a little at a time! My first few pairs I made sure to cut them longer than I wanted and made adjustments as needed.

raw hem levi jeans

Finishing Touches

Once you’ve cut your jeans, put them back on (I know, I know), make sure you like the length of them, and make adjustments where they are necessary!  After your jeans are the perfect length, wash and dry them to achieve the fraying at the hem. Once dried, you might have to cut a few pieces that are too long but they will be good to go!

Have you DIYed the raw hem on your jeans yet? Share your tips below!

Leave a Reply


  1. 2.6.19
    Rach said:

    I’ve been wanting to hem my own jeans, but so scared! I think I just need to go for it! Thanks for the tips girl!

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      Give it a try on an old pair of jeans first and always start on the longer side – you can always cut more off!

  2. 2.6.19

    I love this look! I definitely need to try this DIY!

    xo, Hillary |

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      It’s my absolute favorite style jeans!

  3. 2.6.19
    Mollie said:

    Yesss I love cutting my jeans!! I do it ALL the time. I actually have long legs but just prefer an above ankle length on my denim. I hope the raw edge trend never goes away!

    xx Mollie

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      I’m with ya girl – it’s SO cute!

  4. 2.6.19

    I will have to try this!! It looks so good!

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      Let me know how it goes!

  5. 2.6.19
    Katie N said:

    I love this tutorial! I’m always so nervous to cut my jeans, but I do love a good ankle length style!

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      Give it a try! I promise you’ll become addicted!

  6. 2.6.19
    Lyddiegal said:

    I always DIY my jeans – especially if they are older, some intentional distressing can be just the thing to make them feel fresh again!
    Chic on the Cheap

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      I agree!

  7. 2.7.19
    Morgan said:

    They turned out perfectly!! I’m loving straight leg jeans these days!

    How 2 Wear It []

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      Thanks, lady!

  8. 2.7.19
    Stephanie said:

    Love this! I’ve never done raw-hemmed any of my jeans, but in high school I would chop them into shorts sometimes. I find that it’s only really feasible if they’re not stretchy material, but maybe a raw-hem is easier!

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      Ouuu – I’ve never tried to cut jeans into shorts, I need to give it a try!

  9. 2.8.19
    Mei said:

    Ohhh this trend is sooo awesome for petite gals 🙂
    And you nailed it!

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      Yes it is!! Thanks lady!

  10. 2.10.19

    This is the best tutorial, now I can’t wait to go raw hem my jeans!

  11. 2.11.19

    Omg bookmarking this post!! I’m 4’11 so I am always on the struggle bus of trying to find jeans that hit right. I’ve been wanting to try cutting my jeans and going for the raw hem look but I’ve been so scared. This is definitely giving me courage to try. Thanks for the guide girl!

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      The freakin’ struggle!!! Can’t wait to see how yours turn out.

  12. 2.11.19
    Jamaria Johnson said:

    I am so scared to take on this type of DIY project, but you made it look so easy! Thanks for sharing! xo

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      It’s so hard to mess up! Give it a try!

  13. 2.14.19
    Kacie said:

    I love a good DIY and definitely want to try this! Great way to repurpose old jeans that have been collecting dust.

    Xo, Kacie |

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      Can’t wait to see how yours come out!

  14. 2.14.19
    Kacie said:

    Such a great way to repurpose old jeans! Love a good DIY and definitely want to try this!

    Xo, Kacie |

    • 2.27.19
      Rachel said:

      I’m with ya!