“Remember what your hands can do.” Sewn Company’s motto reflects its central mission—"to reconnect you to yourself, your past ,and your global community with a needle and thread.”
Owner Sarah E. Woodyard has taken her decade of experience of sewing and interpreting at the Margaret Hunter Shop in Colonial Williamsburg and applied those historic techniques to modern practice, providing education and inspiration to encourage and promote a love of hand sewing.
Sara is “passionate about preserving the skills and stories of hand sewing, through research, design and education.” She adds, “these stories remind us of what is possible through practice, attention and care…by investing in a hand-sewn garment or class you will reconnect to yourself and your history.”
To help foster this connection, Sewn Company offers a variety of resources, from free YouTube tutorials to pre-recorded and live classes. Sarah’s YouTube has several great videos, including a flat felled seam tutorial for both right and left-handed stitchers. This particular seaming technique is based on a 19th-century shirt in a private collection.
For more in-depth help, her live classes are a great option. Her next live class will run October 14, 16 and 23. In this virtual class, you will learn how to hand sew a practical linen apron from start to finish. The project is not only a great way to practice your sewing skills but also gives you a practical garment to add to your historical or modern wardrobe. The class has three live sessions held via zoom and pre-recorded step-by-step videos to reference after the class is over.
If you prefer a more relaxed style of class, Sewn Company also has a number of pre-recorded workshops that allow you to learn at your own pace. These are perfect for beginners or more experienced sewers who want to refine their skills or learn a new technique. Perhaps you are building a historical or history bounding wardrobe? Then the 18th century petticoat workshop is a great place to start.
Or maybe you would rather start small with something practical for your everyday? Then the linen napkin workshop is for you!
There are scholarship opportunities for the apron class and pay-what-you-can discounts available for PGM (People of the Global Majority), Trans individuals, and/or people with disabilities for all the pre-recorded workshops.
Sara even offers one hour and thirty minute virtual private hand sewing lessons if you need help for a particular project or problem. These give you specific, real-time help and come with a recording of the session so you can review it whenever you need.
Finally, Sewn has a Patreon where you can find perks like discounts on classes and community events like monthly sewing circles and designated community chats.