Dawn AndersonDawn began sewing when she was 5 years old and it has since become a lifelong pursuit. Dawn earned a B.A. from Shenandoah University and an M.F.A. from Indiana University, both in Theatre Costume Design. During graduate school she had the opportunity to study in England at Bournemouth University where she focused on corsetry techniques, traditional hand tailoring, and fashion history. During college she worked as a costume designer and patternmaker for theatre and dance, making custom clothing for performers, specialty garments, historic reproductions, corsetry, millinery, and taught basic to advanced sewing classes. After college, she went to work as a free-lance designer and cutter in Edinburgh, Scotland. She returned to the US and began her small ready to wear line and sewing pattern company in Washington DC and Northern Virginia. She currently sells sewing patterns for clothing and hats on her website and at tradeshows. She hand makes men's custom jackets and is expanding her women's ready to wear lines. Dawn currently teaches couture sewing and hat making at sewing conventions, local stores, and in her home in Northern Virginia. She is a member of the American Sewing Guild and leads her own group dedicated to Couture Sewing. Dawn has begun writing for sewing magazines and is working on a book on tailoring. She has also started filming sewing instruction videos and hopes to one day have her own TV show on sewing. Please feel free to visit her website for more information.
Dawn Anderson: Hi! I'm Dawn Anderson and I'm showing you how to sew by hand. Right now, we're going to work on sewing the catch stitch. The catch stitch is very similar to a cross-stitch. It has overlapping diagonal stitches on the top side, as you can see here and then on the reverse side, again it has very small nearly invisible stitches.
To begin go ahead and cut your thread approximately 18 inches long. Thread your needle and tie a knot in one end. With the catch stitch, were actually going to start on the left side which is opposite of the stitch sequences that we've done previously. It does start similar to the previous stitches we come up from the underside edge and what you're going to do is take your first diagonal stitch across the folded edge here. You're only going to pick up again a small amount of thread because this would be the finish side and then pull your thread through, come across, take up a small amount on the folded edge and pull that through and you can see how the crosses are beginning to form.
The catch stitch is used for all types of hand sewing. You can use it as a hemstitch on satin and I also use it to hem sew and interfacing and hair canvas for traditional hand tailoring. The catch stitch can also be used to secure pleats on the inside of a skirt and for circular hems. On the top side, you can see the nice angled diagonal stitches here and I'm going to flip it over and show you the very small stitches on the reverse, as you can see here. Now if this again was matching color thread, you wouldn't see it at all. When you use the catch stitch to sew in your interfacing your seam would actually go right along this edge and hide what tiny bit of stitches you could see. So, again it's a great invisible stitch.
Now, to knot off your catch stitch, go ahead and knot it from the folded edge, tie your knot, put your thumb there, pull it tight and snip your thread and that is the catch stitch.
Now let's move on to sewing the buttonhole stitch.