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The Great British Sewing Bee - BBC 2 Tuesday 25th March, TV review

By shill  |  Posted: March 26, 2014

Claudia Winkleman on The Great British Sewing Bee

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It was vintage week in the quarter finals of The Great British Sewing Bee, last night, when the five contestants had to use 1930s sewing machines to make their garments.

The first task was to make a blouse from a 1930s pattern. At first glance and with four hours to complete it, this challenge seemed quite straightforward. But on closer inspection it proved to be something of a conundrum. The patterns had no markings - only ‘morse code’ type perforations - and the garments required ruching, peplums and placket openings!

On the whole the finished articles looked impressive with Heather winning top marks from the judges, Patrick and May.

The second challenge was a ‘make-do-and-mend’ task, making a piece of women’s clothing from a man’s suit.

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To the untrained eye - mine - some of the finished garments looked really quite ridiculous. Quite what was going on with Tamara’s halter neck top, adorned with buttoned cuffs, I don’t know!

However, Lynda’s neat pinafore dress and Cinello’s “ingenious” suit dress worked well.

The final, six-and-a-half-hour task was to make a vintage-style coat from patterns that meant something to the sewer.

For Lynda, who made a beautiful swing coat to replicate one worn by her mother in the 1950s, it proved to be an emotional journey.

Tamara made a stylish fitted yellow coat with covered buttons, while Heather and Cinello opted for Dior patterns. None of the finished garments would have looked out of place on today’s catwalk – apart from David’s complicated 1940s policeman’s jacket with tricky collar and pockets.

It was Lynda’s lovely creation, however, that won garment of the week.

And it was David’s time to leave the show - after a courageous run among some brilliant sewers.


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