What is a Shark Bite Hem?

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

As an eye catching way to take just about any type of garment and add some zing to the look, a shark bite hem can be the difference between the ordinary and the exciting. With an inverted deep scoop design that resembles the impression left after a shark has taken a bite out of some food source, the outline of the scoops are somewhat ragged in appearance, as well as having the rather dramatic plunge effect.

Woman with a flower
Woman with a flower

Often referred to as a four point hem, a full shark bite hem will employ the presence of more than one bite in a given garment. For example, a blouse that is cut with the method will include two shark bites on the front hem, coming to a point on the sides and in the middle where the right and left panels of the blouse come together. On the backside, the shark-bite hem motif is usually continued with two bites forming a look that is similar to the front of the blouse.

The use of the shark bite hem is not limited to the production of interesting looking casual blouses. In fact, it is quite popular when it comes to evening wear. The choice may be to use it on simple black sheath, adding a touch of drama to the otherwise unadorned garment. If the dress is designed with a layered effect, the various layers may feature shark bite hems, creating a cascading effect. Even a tea length dress can be designed featuring this type of hem, adding a little bit of glamor to an outfit that would otherwise be simply proper for that time of day.

The nice thing about a shark bite hem is that it does not necessarily have to be exact. This means it is very easy to cut out by hand. Alternatively, there are sewing machines and cutting methods that will create a hem that is completely symmetric rather than irregular. In either case, it is relatively easy to sew the hem or even to stitch it in place with liquid stitching methods if the situation calls for a quick fix.

The shark bite hem can also be used with undergarments as well. From silk camisoles to sexy negligees, it is considered to be a design element that enhances the feminine appearance in just about every situation. Because the hem allows for easy movement and usually is used with fabrics that hang well, it is no secret that so many types of lacy undergarments and sleepwear will make excellent use of it.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

After many years in the teleconferencing industry, Michael decided to embrace his passion for trivia, research, and writing by becoming a full-time freelance writer. Since then, he has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including wiseGEEK, and his work has also appeared in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and several newspapers. Malcolm’s other interests include collecting vinyl records, minor league baseball, and cycling.

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