In episode five of The Great British Sewing Bee, the sewers were challenged to work with nylon, leather and velvet for the first time. They had to make fitted garments with these three fabrics, which can be difficult to handle.
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 create a bomber-jacket-style anorak using slippery nylon. Each sewer chose their own method of avoiding pin pricks – Tamara pinned within the seam allowance, David taped the pattern to the fabric and Lynda chose not to pin at all, using a jar of safety pins as a weight to hold the pattern down as she cut! The anorak pattern included raglan sleeves, with the shoulder seams exposed on the outside of the garment and then sealed with waterproof tape. They also had to apply stretchy ribbing to the waist and cuffs, and a waterproof zip. Tamara’s anorak was well executed, and she won this challenge.
Sew a classic bomber jacket
Try this children’s nylon gilet
The sewers were then presented with a white sleeveless jersey top and a selection of leather fabrics for the second challenge. They were asked to create a brand new garment with these items and anything from the haberdashery, with the main focus on their successful handling of leather. The sewers used a variety of techniques, and all managed to work with the leather incredibly well! Lynda won the challenge with her beautiful strapless top, and Chinelo came second with a stylish top that incorporated leather and lace.
Browse our leather patterns
Experiment with lace detailing
For the final challenge, the sewers had to create a pair of velvet trousers for themselves. Fitting the garment was tricky, and they had to buddy up to check measurements and add pins whilst wearing their trousers. Heather made a classic pair of slim-fitting trousers with a lining and Lynda made straight-leg trousers with a zip fly and side pockets. Chinelo’s skinny-leg trousers had a quirky assymetric peplum ruffle around the waist. The Garment of the Week was Tamara’s anorak and Jenni left the Sewing Bee.
Make something with velvet!
Create your own trousers
In the quarter final next week, the sewers face a mysterious pattern, transform a man’s suit and take on the heftiest made-to-measure challenge so far! If you missed last week, check out our Episode Four round-up blog post to catch up.
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 Five, shown on 18th March at 8pm, BBC Two.