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The Great British Sewing Bee

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That was my favourite episode of the season so far. Even the transformation challenge didn't irk me like it usually does.

Juliet did really well, the only thing I didn't like was that the pattern on her dress was off center on the top. I liked the pattern combination of Janet's pussy bow blowse, and Jen's too. Riccardo had a good week and I agree with him, that as a dress the fabric looked chic, as curtains its fugly.

Oh Mercedes. She hasn't stood out for her precision sewing, has she? Then why did she risk using the blanked instead of switching fabrics? She made life very hard for herself from the start. Her made to measure was ok.

I wanted Esme to try on the gilet - it should've fitted her. She really is the MVP of the season

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IIRC, Mercedes had picked a shirt as well as the duvet - only to realise partway through it was a blouse. She did get away with that though. 

Janet’s transformation challenge garment was reversible as well which I think pushed her up to first place because of the extra difficulty. And it was waterproof when reversed. 

Leah’s transformation challenge, yes she did make her task easier by choosing to make a smaller garment, but the judges could have specified an adult garment if they’d wanted to, so she just took advantage of the openness of the challenge. 

(Personally I wouldn’t even have known where to start with such an open challenge!)

I liked Ricardo’s dress. A shame he didn’t get garment of the week, but Juliet’s was outstanding. Did they mention where she’d sourced the blue lining though. It didn’t look repurposed. 

Not really surprised that Mercedes left. I think she’d been on borrowed time for a few weeks now. 

A part of me hopes that Jen wins, simply because she seems to add pockets to everything!

They did do the using curtains for dresses as part of a transformation challenge a few seasons back during a Sound of Music themed ep. Interesting to see what they could do given time to plan. 

Surprised that nobody used tablecloths in the made to measure. I have a nice set of curtains that a friend made me from some tablecloths a few years back.  

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No surprise Mercedes was eliminated, she's was just barely hanging on for a while. I really liked Juliette's lace curtain dress, I think she's going to be the winner.

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Another good week for Juliet. She really did manage to make curtains and bed sheets look sexy. As I said last week, Juliet is probably the best original designer from the bunch.

I really liked Ricardo's things this week and I was even split between him and Juliet's dresses at the end. I really loved that weird curtain material. I would have worn that dress except I agree with Esme that it pulled just a tiny bit at the shoulders.

On 3/13/2019 at 9:08 AM, Ceindreadh said:

A part of me hopes that Jen wins, simply because she seems to add pockets to everything!

Yes, I like Jen's style and pockets agenda too. She is a great sewer but her designs aren't always as interesting as Juliet or Ricardo's.

Janet's gilet was really well done. Leah is starting to use borrowed time. I did like her child's party dress though.

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S5.E6: British & Irish Fabrics Week


The quarter-finalists face British and Irish fabrics week. First up it is the pattern challenge, which this week is a stern test of their soft tailoring skills, as judges Patrick Grant and Esme Young ask the sewers to create a ‘worker's jacket’ from linen. It is a garment full of complex techniques, using a fabric that can easily crease and fray, made all the more nerve-wracking as they must precisely follow Patrick’s personal pattern.

Next it is the transformation challenge, and the sewers are asked to take inspiration from the British seaside by turning stripy deckchairs and parasols, covered in hard wearing Burnley ‘ticking’ fabric, into stylish garments in just 90 minutes.

For the final challenge, the models arrive in the sewing room to be fitted with made-to-measure coats, constructed from wool the sewers have sourced from across the British Isles. These are the largest garments they’ve attempted so far, and the sewers must once again draw on tailoring prowess to ensure their coats hang and fit perfectly. Whose wool coats will be the pride of Britain and who will unravel, missing out on a coveted place in the semi-final?

Original air date: 3/19/19

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Yay Ricardo! His coat was stunning.

I’ll miss Janet and all her fun comments. I look forward to seeing how the other sewers do without her explaining how the patterns work.

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I really enjoyed this week's history lesson about fabric!

Awww, I love Riccardo for always being so positive even when he knows he totally fucked up. When he was demonstrating having two right arms on his jacket to Joe, I totally cracked up. I laughed when he decided to "disguise" one of the left sleeves but tucking the wrist of the sleeve into the mannequin's front pocket. He knew that he couldn't fix it so late in the game. When he finally figured it out, he had already overlocked and topstitched so there wasn't enough time to rip it apart and re-sew it correctly. Patrick trying to stifle his laughter when he saw the sleeves was great.

I also liked when he said that there was only one bolt of linen left so he split it with Jen because sharing is caring. Other than the identical sleeves, Riccardo did really well, and I loved that Patrick proved it by measuring! How did we get to week six before Patrick busted out his tape measure? If not for the sleeves, Riccardo might have placed first instead of third.

Side note: when Project Runway was originally conceptualized, the producers were going to have seamstresses do the actual construction for the designers. Tim Gunn objected and said that the designers should make their own garments. In recent seasons, they have moved to having one day challenges which means they are ALWAYS pressed for time and a lot of things don't get finished properly. I can imagine the look of British disapproval that Patrick and Esme would have on their faces at the sight of the uneven and sometimes unfinished hems that come down the PR runway. In contrast, I am trying to imagine the reactions of some of the less skilled designers at having to create this jacket. I am 99% sure that Anya couldn't sew a set in sleeve if her life depended on it.

Leah's collar was so lumpy and uneven that it looked like men's pajamas that had been rumpled up in the washing machine. And she got so much wrong even after Jen showed her exactly what to do! I know that menswear and tailoring is difficult, but Leah has been near the bottom the last few weeks so doing so poorly in the first challenge did not bode well for her. No surprise that she came in last.

Jen's jacket looked really nice. And wow, a whole millimeter off on the lapel! She deserved first place for that.

When Janet realized she had sewn the sleeves incorrectly, I loved how all the other sewers immediately made sympathetic noises and were genuinely disappointed for her. One thing I always like about this show is how supportive they are of each other. Of course they want to win, but they know that they don't have to be mean to each other or create unnecessary drama.

The main problem with Juliet's jacket was that it looked lumpy and rumpled, which might have been solved with a good press. Ha, "a catalogue of slightly awkward looking gentlemen" is the name of my new band.

I was excited to see what the contestants created in the transformation challenge. The specific instructions to play with the stripes is what interested me. Some of them were very creative and successful at working with the stripes.

Riccardo's halter top was a bit basic, but it was a fun idea to make bloomers to create an old fashioned bathing suit.

I absolutely LOVED the way Jen used pleats with the stripes to create the skirt. So smart! I originally thought that the blue trim on her top was from the haberdashery until Patrick pointed out that it was the edge of the parasol binding.

My favorite thing about Janet's dress was the star she created on the front. I couldn't believe that she used velcro instead of a zipper though. I wasn't surprised that she got last place.

Leah's clever pleating to crate the origami folds on the top was so great. I knew it would be between her and Jen for first place.

Juliet's mini dress was a fun idea but it wasn't executed as well as it could have been. The tiny pleats on the bodice should have had more impact.

I love wool coats so I was really looking forward to the final challenge. I enjoyed hearing the judges' comments while the contestants were sewing. Esme was correct when she said that Leah does herself no favors by getting herself worked up and panicky.

Jen's 60s swing coat looked nice. The pink Harris tweed and grey Yorkshire wool went together really well. It's a shame that the lining was puling and making the two front pieces not match up perfectly.

Riccardo's 70s cropped coat with Harris tweed looked great. His model looked so confident. She clearly loved it. I liked the pleat in the back with the yellow insert. He did so much top stitching and he lined it (well, not the sleeves, but still). I was so happy that he got garment of the week.

Juliet's midlength camel wool twill was not my favorite. Due to the low neckline and having only one button, it ended up looking like a sweater. It was definitely not hanging perfectly and it was shorter in the front as a result.

Leah's 60s swing coat with camel wool wasn't perfectly constructed, but I loved the bright red she used for the collar and buttons. I agree that when you use a really bright contrast color like that, it has to be perfect because it's going to stand out so much.

Janet's London appliqued landmarks coat was too crafty for me. I felt like this was a result of her saying she needed to do weirder stuff last week. I liked the red color and the pocket.

It was very sweet to hear everyone talk about how much they're going to miss Janet. Ha, and I definitely need a spinoff with Riccardo taking Janet clubbing!

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Oh I would love to have coats in the style and colour of Riccardo and Jen's designs. Unfortunately for me, I can't wear wool or linen. But I love me some stripes (actually wearing a breton shirt right now), and really enjoyed the whimsey transformation challenge.

Poor Janet - in any other week her stuff would have been enough to see her through - Leah had a lucky escape again. For me, I would have preferred larger patches, like the one on the back , throughout because the smaller ones on the bottom looked weird.

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Janet's London appliqued landmarks coat was too crafty for me. I felt like this was a result of her saying she needed to do weirder stuff last week. I liked the red color and the pocket.

I have the pattern that Janet used.  One of the views actually calls for decorations like what she did.  I wish she had done the lantern shaping at the bottom a little better.  I loved that she used Hong Kong finishes on the seam allowances and shame on Esme for not knowing what they are.  I'm going to miss Janet a great deal and so apparently will all the remaining contestants.

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I was surprised at how much I liked Ricardo's bloomers.  They really worked for me.  But Leah's Origami top was brilliant.   For some reason I didn't particularly like Jen's top although I thought using the binding was clever.  Love the pleated skirt, though.  

The whole time they were making linen coats I was like, "Why would you want one of those?"  And they all even the good one/two looked like a wrinkled mess.   Nope.  I'm going to keep that out of my wardrobe.   

I kind of hated the look of Janet's coat when she was explaining it so it worked so much better for me than I anticipated it would.   But still, she was the right pick to go home.  I'll miss her.   


On 3/20/2019 at 6:19 AM, ElectricBoogaloo said:

One thing I always like about this show is how supportive they are of each other. Of course they want to win, but they know that they don't have to be mean to each other or create unnecessary drama.

I've tried to get people to watch this show and multiple people say, 'that sounds so boring."  I'm like, no... they are NICE they aren't boring.   This is why we can't have nice things.   

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S5.E7: International Week & Semi-Finals


The four remaining sewers go global, taking on garments and techniques from around the world. Firstly, the semi-finalists must follow a pattern like none they have encountered before, as judges Patrick Grant and Esme Young ask them to make a pair of Indian dhoti pants. Using a process based on the centuries-old tradition of folding and draping large rectangular pieces of fabric, these wide-legged, heavily pleated trousers prove a perplexing, visually striking proposition.

Next up, it is the transformation challenge as the sewers take on a garment from West Africa, the Dashiki. This colourful, strikingly patterned men’s tunic must be transformed into a brand new outfit in just 90 minutes, making imaginative use of the Dashiki’s distinctive, bold print.

For their final challenge, the made to measure, the sewers take on the fiendishly tricky high end Japanese couture technique of origami. Tasked with creating an origami top for their model, the sewers must sculpt dramatic, arresting garments, drawing on the ancient art of paper-folding. It proves to be a pain-staking process, pushing the sewers' pattern drafting, fabric-handling, and precision sewing to new heights. But only three of these four incredibly talented sewers can make it through to the grand final.

Original air date: 3/26/19

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I wasn't sure how Jen's pants would turn out when she chose silk instead of cotton, but they looked so great. I thought the print on the fabric might hide any minor issues with the 32 (!) pleats, but Patrick said he didn't even need to get out his tape measure because he could see how perfect and even they were! I knew she would get first place!

Juliette's blue dhoti pants looked nice, but her pleats were clearly uneven. The nerd in me loves whenever Patrick gets out his tape measure to verify things like that. Her pleats were really off. He said one was 3.6" and the other was 2/5" which is a pretty big difference. And not topstitching the waist made it really lumpy.

Riccardo's orange dhoti pants looked nice. Great fabric choice - they draped really nicely. But yeah, that part that Esme said was dodgy was definitely noticeable. One thing I like about this show is that we get things like Esme walking around the workroom and then specifically telling Riccardo to press his pleats as he worked instead of waiting until the end as he planned to do.

I didn't care for Leah's fabric choice. The floral print on a sky blue background was more costume prairie dress than dhoti pant to me. The pants looked like they weren't hanging well on her mannequin.

I loved the dashiki transformation challenge. I wish the designers on Project Runway would be forced to use brightly colored prints at least once per season. I get so tired of the endless parade of black garments. The Sewing Bee contestants don't have a problem using color, but I still enjoyed seeing what they did with these great colors and prints.

Leah did a good job working with the pink and green of the original dashiki and incorporating more pink and green fabric to make a dress. It reminded me of a watermelon. I liked the asymmetric skirt. I guess she needed some pleating redemption after the first challenge!

Riccardo used too much of that yellow fabric to cover up the original fabric. I get what he was going for with the dashiki fabric showing through the gap, but I liked ti better with the waist open so you could see more of the original fabric.

I loved the way Jen used her fabric to create the top and shorts. She was very smart about which parts of the print she used.

I liked the purple dashiki that Juliette chose. I wish she had used some of that fabric on the one shouldered top. It just looked very plain compared to the bottom.

Wow, Leah went from last place in the dhoti challenge to first place in the dashiki challenge. Meanwhile, Jen did the opposite and went from first place in the dhoti challenge to last place in the dashiki challenge. I actually kind of enjoy when they don't make it easy for the judges to decide who is staying and who is going home. Juliette placed second place in both and Riccardo placed third in both.

Ooh, I was so excited to see what the contestants made for the origami challenge!

Leah's kawaii/Hello Kitty had two different origami elements (the collar and the placket) but they were very subtle. That could be either a good thing or a bad thing depending on how you feel about draaaaaama. Because it's subtle, this is something you could wear without drawing attention to OMG THIS IS ORIGAMI.

Riccardo's Bjork was a lot of work for what ended up looking like a giant diamond on the front of a very plain top. I wish they had shown it in profile so we could see how it looked like one of those paper party lanterns.

Juliette's yellow Shingo Sato inspired spiral was an interesting idea. It could have ended up looking like a wrinkled mess, but she did a nice job. I liked the dramatic open back too.

Jen's puzzle top was the one I was the most interested to see. The pattern was so cool! I can't believe she made that out of one piece of folded fabric. I loved when she demonstrated by showing us the miniature version. I agree that it looked a bit wrinkled after all the folding, but it was SO amazing  that she made a top (with a pocket!) by folding a single piece of fabric.

Awwww, I am so disappointed that Jen won't be in the finals. I have really enjoyed seeing what she made throughout the season.

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2 minutes ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Awwww, I am so disappointed that Jen won't be in the finals. I have really enjoyed seeing what she made throughout the season.

I am as well. She was my pick for winner. I’m very surprised Leah outlasted her. 

The origami tops reminded me of when the Pattern Magic series was popular in sewing circles years back. 

It’s a shame the show only has one episode to go. 

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Starting from Week 3 or 4, I thought the final three would be the Js -- Juliet, Jen, Janet -- with Riccardo in 4th, so this outcome is a slight upset. But it also feels like the right one if we're judging on a week-by-week basis, and it seems clear that while Jen is a better sewer, Leah is a pretty damn good designer.

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Esme's necklace was so cute, it would make Diana Trout jealous!

Leah's made to measure shirt was stunning, but I don't know why the judges were so in love with her transformation - it was my least favourite.

Riccardo, wow, the origami shirt was so good, and I also liked his transformation. But for me, Juliet is the woman to beat in the final - her tailoring is great and she always picks interesting shapes and fabrics.

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3 hours ago, Aulty said:

But for me, Juliet is the woman to beat in the final - her tailoring is great and she always picks interesting shapes and fabrics.

That's who I'm rooting for too, I think she's consistently been among the best. I'm so sad that there's only one more episode left.

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Juliet has been my favourite since the start so I'm glad she will be in the final. I've grown to really appreciate Riccardo and I agree with Esme that he has grown in this competition as well. Leah does have interesting designs, but I still prefer Riccardo or Juliet as designers and sewers. I much preferred their Made to Measure tops over Leah's one.

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Juliet, Jen, and Ricardo were my final three and who I honestly think it should have been.  I didn't think Leah's top had any drama at all  I get not being so much it looks costumey.  I don't get doing all that work for something that you can't see without picking up her collar and inspecting it.   

I also didn't like Leah's transformation outfit but that is because of the colors which is subjective.  The sew was fine.  

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On 3/28/2019 at 1:25 AM, Aulty said:

But for me, Juliet is the woman to beat in the final - her tailoring is great

I'm rooting for Juliet too, though I think there is a mini-narrative -- starting with the ep where they did quite a bit of menswear -- that her structured tailoring isn't as strong. I think Patrick even said something about her "tailoring" not being as strong as her "dressmaking" or "draping." For that reason I could see Riccardo sneaking in under the wire for a victory. But hopefully it'll be Juliet!

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S5.E8: Evening Wear Week


The Great British Sewing Bee reaches its dramatic denouement as the three finalists compete for the title of Britain’s best amateur sewer. They take on a trio of evening wear challenges. Bringing together a range of advanced sewing skills, from tailoring, to high-end designing and delicate handling of luxury fabrics, perfecting evening wear is a pinnacle for any home sewer.

Judges Patrick Grant and Esme Young begin by asking the sewers to follow the most complex pattern yet – a double-breasted waistcoat. Even if they master the multitude of intricate processes, the sewers face the ultimate challenge of sewing blind, as the waistcoat must be stitched together inside-out, before one final, nail-biting reveal.

Next it is the sewers' final chance to show off their instinct for design in the transformation challenge, as they attempt to turn the domestic into the dramatic by repurposing net curtains into exquisite, red carpet-ready pieces of evening wear.

Lastly, for the most important made-to-measure challenge of the competition, the sewers attempt to construct and fit glamorous strapless evening gowns for their models, this time hand-picked for friends and family. Creating a unique, jaw-dropping gown using yards of luxury fabric, suspended entirely from a fitted corset, will take a feat of daring construction and their most precise sewing yet. Once the final stitch is in place and the catwalk is over, the sewers’ friends and family, along with past competitors, arrive to celebrate. But once the judges have made their decision, there can only be one winner.

Original air date: 4/2/19

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Nice work Juliet.

I hope this show returns next year. It’s such fun to watch. I wouldn’t mind Joe being replaced to be honest. While I don’t mind a soggy bottom joke or two, I felt he was over the top with the dirty jokes. 

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2 hours ago, oldCJ said:

Nice work Juliet.

I hope this show returns next year. It’s such fun to watch. I wouldn’t mind Joe being replaced to be honest. While I don’t mind a soggy bottom joke or two, I felt he was over the top with the dirty jokes. 

They’re already looking for contestants for next series, so presumably it’s been renewed for at least another year. 

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6 hours ago, Ceindreadh said:

They’re already looking for contestants for next series, so presumably it’s been renewed for at least another year. 

I might be misremembering but I thought they were looking for contestants for another series of the great pottery throwdown when it was cancelled, so you never know. 

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I was watching this last episode now and scrolling twitter. I follow Amber Buchart, the fashion historian and, 7 minutes before the end, I got spoiled because she retweeted the winner!


Anyway, I couldn't be more pleased. Juliet was a contestant who was consistently very good and consistently a strong sewer. I'm so envious of her way with colours and design, that's a true skill. (and her daughter is sO CUTE!) 

I think Ricardo's gown was also lovely, and this is the tiniest nitpick, but I wish Leah had somehow faced the ends of her bow so it stood up. 

This was a year with some very good sewists and I'm glad this show came back. 

But also, watching the sewists bag the lining on the vests at 7:15 was very stressful. If you've never done it, it's just an infuriating process that gets me every time. 

(I have realized that if i were to come on a show like this, I would be like Leah, just stressed and frazzled right through to the last minute. Although, I'm unsure I'd be able to turn out a garment like she did, I'd probably just cry.)

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I kind of wish the judges hadn't kept telling Leah what she was doing wrong while she was making her pink waistcoat. Even with all of their help, she still did the faux pockets incorrectly. She should have listened to Riccardo who knew that the mitered corners should have the pockets facing up.

Juliet's waistcoat looked perfect. I think aside from her excellent sewing (which, duh, was a major contributing factor), she was also smart enough to pick a dark color and to press it really well. She definitely deserved first place.

Poor Riccardo - I felt bad when he kept missing the layers during the blind sewing. I give him credit for turning the whole thing inside out again and trying again. I really liked his fabric choices and I liked the bright red buttons.

I wasn't a fan of the transformation challenge because all of those outfits looked like exactly what they were - clothes made out of lace curtains. Riccardo's was the guiltiest of this.

While I liked Juliet's white dress, I felt like it was a bit of a cheat to just use the curtains for the skirt at the last minute.

Leah's giant bow cracked me up. All season, Esme has been saying that the bows weren't big enough and she finally got her wish.

I was a bit disappointed in the made to measure results. When they said the challenge was to create evening gowns, I was expecting something you'd see on a red carpet or at a fancy gala (opening night at the opera, for example). These were more like okay prom dresses. We've seen all three of them make some really great things over the season so it's not for lack of skill.

While I totally like the message and idea behind Riccardo's jellyfish dress, what he made looked like a hastily made cosplay dress. I think part of the reason it looked a bit cheap was the choice of the material, but his choices in fabrics that were translucent and the color he wanted were probably few and far between.

I was worried for Leah's poor sister when she told her to lean over so she could iron the dress while she was still wearing it. GIRL. I liked the bright yellow color which gave it a very summery look, but it ended up looking like a beach dress (rather than a dressy evening gown). I did like how light and flowy it was though.

Juliet's red dress was the one that looked the most like an evening gown. You can't go wrong with a classic red ballgown! I agreed that making the bodice more asymmetric would have been a better idea, but it didn't bother me.

I loved how giddy all three finalists were when they came up together holding hands to find out who won. So sweet to see Riccardo jumping up and down and hugging her (and later telling her daughter "Your mommy's a winner!"). He and Leah were both really gracious and complimentary, which I always love seeing. Awww, and Esme crying was adorable.

I always enjoy the post-show updates on everyone, but I was totally cracking up at some of them. On some shows, the contestants try to brag about what they're doing that's related to the competition (sewing, cooking, etc) but here we got things like Jen is silversmithing thimbles, Riccardo sewed right AND left sleeves, and Leah made a bigger version of one of the challenge designs for a Halloween costume. I like that they weren't using the updates as a chance to show off but as a way to just share a little bit more of their personalities and senses of humor. And congratulations to Alexei on his baby!

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Congratulations Juliet! The final challenge of this show usually features one truly stunning piece and two things that clearly come from home sewers. Juliets was so lush, I am sure the deep red colour helped, but there was no way they weren't gonna give her the win.

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I've been rooting for Juliet since the beginning, so I'm very pleased she won. Leah was so scattered this episode. If the judges didn't help her out, I don't think she would have even finished her garments. I honestly thought her repurpose gown was butt ugly, no idea how it won first place. I'm sad this season is over 😞

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I was a bit annoyed at all of the help Leah was getting too. It's the final, so I think that the judges should have taken more of a backseat. It was a tossup between Juliet and Riccardo for me, and Juliet had the much much better day. I loved her dress so much, I can't wait for next season. 

On a slightly related note, I'm currently making my own jeans, which is a bit of a challenge. I don't understand how they could have made jeans in the five hours they were given.

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2 hours ago, Aulty said:

Did they forget to show Riccardo in the 'Since the Sewing Bee' montage?

No, they showed him with the comment that he’d made a left and a right sleeve. 

I think they mixed up the order a bit. Usually they show them in the order they left the sewing bee or bake off, but they showed Alexei nearer the end than he should have been. 

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27 minutes ago, Ceindreadh said:

No, they showed him with the comment that he’d made a left and a right sleeve. 

I think they mixed up the order a bit. Usually they show them in the order they left the sewing bee or bake off, but they showed Alexei nearer the end than he should have been. 

Ah, thanks. I noticed Alexei was somewhat out of order and where I would have expected Riccardo to be 🙂

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5 hours ago, doesntworkonwood said:

I was a bit annoyed at all of the help Leah was getting too.

Riccardo helped her a lot in the pattern challenge which irked me because she ended up ahead of him. If the judges and him hadn't helped, she would have been bottom. I do like that she helped Riccardo with his corset in the Made to Measure. Tellingly, Juliet was very independent and didn't seem to require much help in all three challenges. The right person won. I really like Riccardo's sewing as well and he chose a beautiful lining for his waist coast but I was less enthused with his other two pieces. I'm also surprised Leah won the Transformation challenge. I do think it was one of the worse Transformation challenges though.

Happy Juliet won. I'm surprised Netflix or another service has not bought the US airing rights.

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As far as I know a 6th series has been confirmed and there has been a call for applications earlier this year. I haven't seen a teaser or trailer for it on the BBC yet, but they tend to announce those shows relatively close to the actual air dates. They have just announced the second series of that Mary Berry 'Best Home Cook' show, so I'd expect Sewing Bee to air when that is over (end of February, I'd say).

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I am a home sewer (which looks like I am part of the septic system) but I have never made a gentleman's waistcoat and I hope I never will. And I was worried (perhaps unnecessarily?) that Riccardo would struggle with the 12 pages of written instructions for the waistcoat. Sometimes people speak English as a second language better than they can read it. It looked like a lot, especially for a time crunch.

I have thoroughly enjoyed every season of this show so much and I am very pleased with Juliet winning this season. I agree with a previous poster who said Juliet could have a career as a designer.

Also, I adored Claudia but I was super excited to see that Joe was her replacement. I have loved him for a few years already. Unexpectedly, I have a bit of a crush on Patrick. And Riccardo. What a lovely man. What lovely men. 




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Any news on this yet? Best Home Cook just ended, & the show was on last March, so I would think they would have announced dates for season 6 by now.

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Finally! Here is the episode description for the opener:


In their first week, the sewers are eased in gently with wardrobe staples that might look familiar but aren’t necessarily straightforward to make. For their pattern challenge, the judges ask for a wrap skirt, a garment whose clean crisp lines can only be achieved through precise cutting, accurate stitching and a judicious choice of fabric.

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The Great British Sewing Bee is back, with 12 sewers competing this time. Joe Lycett kicks off ten weeks of the most perplexing patterns, eye-popping transformations and stunning made-to-measure garments yet. Scrutinising every stitch are Saville Row’s Patrick Grant and Central Saint Martins’s Esme Young, testing the sewers across a huge range of garments from rugby shirts to children’s dungarees, flamenco skirts to a boned basque, via food fancy dress.

In their first week, the sewers are eased in gently with wardrobe staples that might look familiar but aren’t necessarily straightforward to make. For their pattern challenge, the judges ask for a wrap skirt, a garment whose clean crisp lines can only be achieved through precise cutting, accurate stitching and a judicious choice of fabric.

Next, the contestants' ability to make the ordinary extraordinary is put to the test in the transformation challenge, as they transform two plain men’s office shirts into a stylish new garment to fit a female mannequin.

For the week's final challenge, the mannequins are replaced with human models as the sewers attempt to make their first made-to-measure garment - a tea dress. This classic below-the-knee and above-the-ankle dress allows for interpretation, letting the contestants' personalities shine through whether they opt for a vintage or contemporary style. It also proves to be a benchmark test of their ability to achieve a flawless fit and to impress the judges with the finer details.

Battling against the clock to showcase their skill and creativity, who will stitch their way to Garment of the Week, and who will unravel at this early stage, becoming the first to leave the Great British Sewing Bee?

Original air date: 4/22/20

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Meet the S6 contestants:



At 24 Alex is the youngest person in the sewing room.

Age: 24
Occupation: Student
From: Gloucestershire

During term time, Alex studies cognitive sciences at Edinburgh University and he also loves ballroom dancing. He learnt to dance just three years ago and has quickly progressed to competition standard, now winning awards across Europe.

As a teenager Alex was taught to sew by his mum, who he watched make wedding dresses on her 1980s sewing machine. “Teach me your ways; Oh Jedi!” he asked her.

Having learnt from the master he tentatively branched out into menswear to create his own clothes.


Paramedic Ali’s twin passions are sewing and golfing. These two worlds collide on the range where she showcases her colourful homemade golf clothes.

Age: 48
Occupation: Paramedic
From: West Yorkshire

In 2013 she started a sewing blog. Its popularity led to her arranging meet-ups with followers, and one person has even travelled from Germany to be part of the action.

Aside from sewing Ali’s been a paramedic for 23 years which has seen her deliver countless babies.


Teaching is Angillia's vocation - she taught primary school children for thirty years before retiring in 2016.

Age: 62
Occupation: Retired Primary School Teacher
From: West Yorkshire

Today she loves to make clothes for formal events and parties, in her own bold and colourful fashion.

When she’s not sewing she still likes to work with young people.

Angillia also practices mindfulness, and can be found attending meditation meetings.


Clare followed in her mother’s footsteps and is a medical consultant at a hospital in Portsmouth with specialist interest in lung cancer.

Age: 37
Occupation: Hospital Doctor
From: Winchester

Clare's job is hectic and sewing gives her an enjoyable creative escape.

It was through her mother that Clare was introduced to sewing, she used to make party dresses and taught her to sew when she was eight years old.

Clare didn’t start sewing in earnest until five years ago when her love of vintage clothing developed. She loves the 1930s and 1940s, and makes the majority of her own clothes using modern copies of vintage patterns.


Fiona started sewing as a little girl when her mother helped her make a rag doll.

Age: 56
Occupation: House Person
From: Renfrewshire

Sewing took a back seat until her 20s when she became a “golf widow” and needed something to occupy her time when her partner was on the course.

Motherhood gave Fiona the opportunity to make clothes for her three kids, and she moved onto all the soft furnishing for their home.

These days she’s a self-proclaimed “selfish sewer” who only makes for herself, which she does almost daily in her studio at the top of the house, with her beloved dog Coco by her side.


It was after the birth of her son that Hazel started sewing again, having been taught by her aunt when she was a child.

Age: 26
Occupation: Charity Worker
From: Kent

She loves to make matching outfits for herself, her husband and son.

Sewing is a creative outlet that has given Hazel confidence, and allows her to carve out her own time and keep hold of her identity.

When she’s not sewing, or with her family, Hazel works for a charity that encourages social mobility by connecting young people with major companies.


Liz loves goth punk style, and through being creative with patterns, and using a palette of black and grey, she’s been able to build her own homemade wardrobe.

Age: 37
Occupation: Product Manager
From: Middlesbrough

After graduating from university, Liz went into product management and currently works for an outdoor power equipment company.

She lives with her partner Andy in a happy blended family with their children from previous relationships.


Mark studied music at college, before becoming a personal banker, but he keeps his love of music alive by playing as a pianist in the evenings after work.

Age: 42
Occupation: Personal Banker
From: Kenilworth

Mark has been sewing for three years. He wanted to sew as a young boy, but never had the confidence.

He learned basic skills at the local haberdashery and now sews vintage inspired menswear for himself, his husband and dogs. Mark has a love of big collars and cuffs, and takes inspiration from Dr Who costumes.


Matt works as a broadcast engineer where he monitors forty-five TV channels broadcasting around the world, but he dreams of doing something more creative professionally.

Age: 43
Occupation: Playout Supervisor
From: London

Matt first started sewing in 2017 when he decided to throw a drag party and make his own dress.

Since then he's made more drag outfits for himself, his partner and his friends in the East London LGBTQ community. Not that he’s not happy making menswear too, he has made his own beach shirts and jackets.


During her childhood in Trinidad the choice of imported clothes was limited, so Nicole grew up around dressmaking, often visiting a seamstress to have garments made.

Age: 42
Occupation: Jewellery Designer
From: London

Her mother taught her to sew as a teenager so she could create her own outfits.

Today Nicole’s sewing style is comfortable and relaxed, suited to a mum working from home, but she sees that as no excuse not to “turn out” so makes clothes in slinky metallics, bold Asian prints and fabric sourced from fashion fairs in Paris.


Peter was taught to sew by his mum when he was a child, but it was watching The Great British Sewing Bee that reignited his passion.

Age: 40
Occupation: Deputy Manager, Youth Hostel
From: Brighton

Outside of the Sewing Bee, Peter looks for inspiration from design rebels like Alexander McQueen and Vivienne Westwood when making his own clothes. He has a workshop in the spare room of his flat where he experiments with all things creative.

After leaving school Peter trained as a hairdresser and moved to Brighton when he was 20, where he currently works as the deputy manager of the Brighton YHA.


As a little girl Therese was taught to sew by her primary school teacher.

Age: 64
Occupation: Semi-retired Tutor
From: East Sussex

Her first make was a gingham apron which ignited a love for sewing that she’s carried with her throughout her life.

Therese trained as a primary school teacher in England but her family relocated to Abu Dhabi where they spent nine years. After 40 years she has retired from teaching, but now tutors privately.

Therese is an advocate of reduce, reuse, recycle; she upcycles clothes for her grandchildren and updates her own clothes instead of buying new.

If she does create a new outfit it will be made from a natural fabric and most likely in a floral print.


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That was a good start to the series, wasn't it?

Well done Peter - if he hadn't mentioned that he likes Vivien Westwood, his transformation would have told us :-). Week 1 already reminded me that I never agree with the judges on the transformation challenge. Nicole's was a a piece of farbic with an elastic band and a bunch of trims ..., you wouldn't have know that that was a dress shirt before - and she came 2nd? Rubbish!

Congratulations Matt - very sharp looking dress, that could go into any Hufflepuff girl's wardrobe. Many of the made to measure dresses looked straight out of a Boden catalouge (in a good way). Loved Liz's because I was (still am) that 90s girl 🙂

I also liked the intro with Joe pulling the tarps of the mannequins, a mustached Patrick and Esme. And of course Esme is game for a good fart joke - love her!

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Welcome back, show! I'm disappointed that Joe is back to being "Joe Lycett." I mean, surely he could have kept "Hugo Boss" if only to host a sewing show, right?

Speaking of extracurricular activities, I hope everyone saw Esme on the panel show Would I Lie to You? Here's a clip:

I imagine Matt's tea dress was very well-sewn, but there were a good half-dozen tea dresses that I liked better, probably because their fabrics and/or silhouettes were more fabulous. 

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