\ ˈsō How to pronounce sew (audio) \
sewed; sewn\ ˈsōn How to pronounce sew (audio) \ or sewed; sewing

Definition of sew

transitive verb

1 : to unite or fasten by stitches
2 : to close or enclose by sewing sew the money in a bag

intransitive verb

: to practice or engage in sewing

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from sew

sewability \ ˌsō-​ə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce sew (audio) \ noun
sewable \ ˈsō-​ə-​bəl How to pronounce sew (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for sew


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of sew in a Sentence

She sews her own dresses by hand. He sewed a patch onto his sleeve. I sewed the button back on the shirt. The surgeon sewed the wound shut. She designs her own dresses and sews in her free time.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web Simply sew the needle up and down through the fabric, leaving an even space between each stitch. Emily Vanschmus, Better Homes & Gardens, "How to Start an Embroidery Project," 28 Apr. 2021 Darius Brown was 8 when his older sister, Dazhai, painstakingly taught him how to sew a bow tie. Cathy Free, Star Tribune, "This teen makes tiny bow ties for shelter dogs to help them look spiffy and get adopted," 9 Apr. 2021 Berta Berkovich Kohut, 99, grew up in Czechoslovakia, the daughter of a tailor who taught her to sew. Chronicle Staff, San Francisco Chronicle, "Counting the Bay Area's lost lives during the coronavirus pandemic," 14 Mar. 2021 During the April 7 public hearing on HJR 48 before the committee, the measure drew criticism as being redundant, unnecessary and purposely designed to sew confusion and stoke anti-immigrant fears. John Haughey, Washington Examiner, "Proposed Missouri voting law revisions advance in both chambers," 16 Apr. 2021 The church also helped to organize one of the largest volunteer efforts in Utah since the 2002 Winter Olympics, mobilizing a force of 57,000-plus volunteers to sew more than 6 million medical-grade masks. The Salt Lake Tribune, "Latter-day Saint Charities upped its game for COVID-19, adding more than 1,000 projects in 151 countries," 26 Mar. 2021 Cole and Kocinski share responsibilities: Both come up with the image concepts, work with the tufting gun and hand-sew the backing, while Cole designs all the artwork through Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop. Julissa James, Los Angeles Times, "Lil Yachty’s face? The Circus Liquor store sign? Yes, there’s a rug for that," 11 Mar. 2021 Fold them over, iron, and sew to create a pocket that will fit the dowels snugly (leaving an inch or two of fabric at the edge). Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "Yes, You Can Make Your Own Roman Shades—Here's How," 15 Jan. 2021 In arts camps, kids can learn to sew or practice their acting skills., "Naperville News Digest: Naper Settlement open for the summer; volunteer workdays at Naperville forest preserves; students can submit library book reports for volunteer credit," 9 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sew.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of sew

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for sew

Middle English, from Old English sīwian; akin to Old High German siuwen to sew, Latin suere

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about sew

Time Traveler for sew

Time Traveler

The first known use of sew was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for sew

Last Updated

11 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sew.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for sew



English Language Learners Definition of sew

: to make or repair something (such as a piece of clothing) by using a needle and thread


\ ˈsō How to pronounce sew (audio) \
sewed; sewn\ ˈsōn \ or sewed; sewing

Kids Definition of sew

1 : to join or fasten by stitches
2 : to work with needle and thread

More from Merriam-Webster on sew

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sew

Nglish: Translation of sew for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sew for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sew

What made you want to look up sew? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Used by Nabokov Quiz

  • image1676440788
  • Choose the best definition or synonym for the word in bold: "There are some eructations that sound like cheers—at least, mine did." Lolita
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!