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How to Sew Horsehair Braid Hems

Horsehair braid trim is a type of stiffening material made from nylon fibres held together in a mesh pattern. Horsehair braid trim comes in several thicknesses. The product is designed to add additional stiffness to the hem of a garment, typically used to keep gathered skirts stiff and full. The trim is useful for formal wear, girl's clothing and costumes. You can also use the trim to make any hem stiff for any project desired, such as curtains or tablecloths. Anything that has a hem can use horsehair braid.

Measure the length of the hem to determine how much braid trim is necessary for the project. Cut the trim ½ an inch longer than the length of the hem so you can overlap it and sew the edges together.

Iron the trim with a low heat iron to remove any creases or folds in the trim. If you are worried about melting the fibres, you can place a towel over the trim as you iron to disperse some of the heat.

Mark the desired hemline on the wrong side of the fabric with chalk. Leave enough fabric to fold the horsehair braid trim inside the fabric, plus ¼ of an inch. Trim any excess fabric.

Align the bottom edge of the horsehair braid trim along the marked hemline. Pin the trim in place with straight pins.

Sew the braid trim in place along the hemline. Use a regular running stitch, or a hem stitch if your sewing machine is capable of making a hem stitch.

Fold the fabric hanging down below the braid trim up over the trim. Tuck the raw edge of the fabric under and pin the fabric in place like you would for a regular hem.

Sew the hem in place, removing the pins as you sew. Add extra stability to the trim by sewing a few extra stitches along the seams of the garment.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • ½-inch horsehair braid trim, long enough for hem
  • Scissors
  • Iron
  • Towel
  • Chalk
  • Straight pins
  • Sewing machine
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About the Author

Brenda Priddy has more than 10 years of crafting and design experience, as well as more than six years of professional writing experience. Her work appears in online publications such as Donna Rae at Home, Five Minutes for Going Green and Daily Mayo. Priddy also writes for Archstone Business Solutions and holds an Associate of Arts in English from McLennan Community College.