Hand Sewing II: Seams and Hems

A Virtual Class with Sarah Woodyard

Practice fundamental hand-sewing techniques for garment construction with an exploration of different seams and hems. These seams are self-finished, strong and perfect for the body seams of unlined garments. We will also practice straight and curved hemming techniques to create beautiful, finished edges. At the end of class you should feel confident to seam and hem an unlined, hand-stitched garment. In this class you will make sample pieces to learn how to:

  • Hand-stitch a backstitched flat-felled seam
  • Hand-stitch a mantua-makers seam (the hand-sewing alternative to a French seam)
  • Hand-stitch a straight hem
  • Hand-stitch a curved hem
  • Applications of these stitches for your sewing practice 

This class is for everyone from beginners to advanced stitchers. 

Friday, February 10th, 2023

12pm – 2:30pm ET

Zoom, a link will be sent to participants
the day before class.


This class is part of the Beginner Hand Sewing Series. You can sign up for the four part series on the checkout page by clicking the Sign Up link below.

**This class will be recorded. A link to the recording will be emailed to all registrants following the live session.


  • Textiles: 6 pieces of light to medium weight, plain woven linen or cotton. 4 inch long x 12 inch wide (10 cm x 30 cm). 
  • Needles: I recommend size 8-9 sharps, appliqué or quilters needles. 
  • Thread, if using linen suggested:  80/3 or 80/2 and remember beeswax; if using cotton suggested: 30 or 40 weight “Hand Quilters Cotton”
  • Sharp, small thread scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • Pins
  • Thimble (optional but encouraged)

Sarah Woodyard

Sarah Woodyard is inspired by the labor of historical dressmakers. She spent seven years apprenticing at the Margaret Hunter Millinery Shop in Colonial Williamsburg to learn eighteenth-century mantua-making (dressmaking) and millinery (accessories). After completing her apprenticeship she became a Journeywoman mantua-maker and milliner. Sarah holds her M.A. in Material Culture from the University of Alberta. After ten years of sewing and interpreting at the Margaret Hunter Shop it was time to take this knowledge into the twenty-first century. She opened Sewn Company in 2019. Sewn Company arises from a legacy of hand-stitchers past and present. Through Sewn she teaches historical hand-sewing to historical sewists and modern makers. She is currently taking commissions for hand-sewn items both historical and modern. She is passionate about preserving the skills and stories of hand sewing, through research, design and education. www.sewncompany.com

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