Short Sheet Fix | Tutorial with faux flat-felled seams

Flannel sheets are great … until they shrink

There are so many things to love about winter! For all you flip-flop lovers out there, just bear with me here for a minute, I’m trying to redeem your not-so-favorite season. It’s the abundance of all things cozy that gets us every time. The chunky afghans, fuzzy socks, thick sweaters, mugs of hot chocolate on early winter evenings and one of my all-time favorites – flannel sheets.  But after several seasons of washing and drying, those pesky top sheets tend to shrink so much that they easily come untucked in the middle of the night. And if you’re using flannel sheets it necessarily follows that it must be cold. Untucked flannel sheets + cold night air + frozen toes = certain disaster. Granted, that’s a bit dramatic, but you get the idea. So just in case you’ve had similar issues with your own sheets, today I give you this- Short Sheet Fix | Tutorial with faux flat-felled seams.

how to lengthen a flat sheet

Short Sheet Fix | Tutorial with faux flat-felled seams

Follow along for a brief explanation of each step, and pictures just in case anyone else is a visual learner …

Choosing your fabric

You’ll want to use a fabric with a weight and weave similar to your original sheet. An extra sheet is a great option if you have one laying around. Though coordinating fabrics are nice, it doesn’t have to be a perfect match as the extension will be tucked under your mattress at the end of the bed and covered with your bedspread or duvet.

Your extension needs to be as wide as your sheet plus 4″ on each short end for hems. I found 14″ to be a good width for our king size sheets which have a width of 108″, making my extension 14″ x 112″.

Stitching the extension to your sheet

sheet extensions first stitch

With wrong sides together, butt one long edge of the extensions against the inside edge of the bottom hem of your sheet. To create a uniform seam width, line up the edge of your presser foot up with the stitched edge of the existing bottom hem. Stitch the extension along the base of your sheet using a forward and reverse stitch at the beginning and end of the stitching row.

stitch fold line

Press both seams towards the extension, lightly pulling at the seam while ironing to make it as crisp as possible.

second stitch line

Once your seam is pressed you can see your first stitching line. Add a second line of stitching 1/8″ to 1/4″ in from the original sheet bottom. With two rows of stitching, your seam is less likely to rip when making the bed each morning, or tugging the sheets higher in the middle of the night.

Hemming your sheet extension

double hem

Hem the edges to match those on your existing sheet. For most sheets, this will be a double hem, which is created by folding the raw edge to the wrong side twice, enclosing the raw edge. Mine is a 1/2″ wide double hem, so I folded the fabric once at 1/2″ and folded it again at 1/2″ then stitched close to the open edge, as seen in the picture above. You can find more examples of double hems in previous sewing projects here and here.

extended flannel sheet

And now your sheets are long enough again, or for the first time as the case may be. Winter can now carry on with all her blustery cold self and your feet can carry on as toasty and warm as if they were in a pair of flip flops on a summer July day. Or something like that!


About Beth Moore

A Christ-follower, wife, mom to 4, lifestyle blogger, seamstress and seeker of daily glimpses of God's grace and redemption.

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