For the grand final of The Great British Sewing Bee this year, the sewers certainly didn’t have it easy! They all wanted to prove that they were the best as they took on three challenges to create beautiful couture garments.
WARNING: This blog contains spoilers, so make sure you don’t read on until after you’ve watched the show if you don’t want to ruin any surprises!
The first challenge was to test hand-sewing skills, and the contestants were asked to make a silk tie using a pattern. The tie was made up of two lengths of silk with a piece of lining (known as the tipping) attached, and the sewers chose to lay the pattern pieces across the grain of the fabric to get more flexibility. Tamara and Heather coped well with the challenge and created professional-looking ties, but Chinelo struggled and didn’t finish her hand sewing. Tamara won the challenge, but was only slightly ahead of Heather.
Make a man’s tie
Experiment with silk
The second challenge was to transform a wedding dress into a new garment for a child. Heather used bias binding around the edges of her garment, but Chinelo chose to use facing for a softer finish. The sewers had mixed views on cutting into a wedding dress, but the judges asked for them to be sympathetic to the original design. Chinelo made a sweet little dress with puffed sleeves, Heather made a simple dress with excellent finishing and Tamara’s dress had a delicate layered skirt. Chinelo won, Heather came second and Tamara came third in this challenge.
Be inspired by wedding garments
Try one of our girls’ dress patterns
Finally, the sewers were challenged to design their own couture dress. Tamara’s unusual dress had a layered bodice, which was slashed and decorated with silk flowers, and her pleated skirt was topped with a crystal organza overskirt. Chinelo used illusion net to create the top of her bodice, and she used nine layers of tulle net to create a fishtail skirt. Heather made a bold red and black dress with chain detail at the back.
Sew your own showstopper dress!
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If you’d like to start dressmaking, you’ll find a huge selection of patterns available from BurdaStyleUK. And if you’ve been inspired by anything from The Great British Sewing Bee, please share it with us on Facebook and Twitter!
NOTE: The images in this blog are not suitable for third party use. Images taken from The Great British Sewing Bee Episode Eight, shown on 8th April at 8pm, BBC Two.