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Sewing Bee

(148 posts)
  • Started 7 months ago by brenda midgley
  • Latest reply from Christine Berrett

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  1. So looking forward to the start of the next series of Great British Sewing Bee. My admiration for the people who enter as contestants knows no bounds.....

    How they can start and finish a garment in one session absolutely beats me. Okay, so we do see the odd little wrinkle that you might think wouldn't pass muster, but I tend to base my viewpoint of it by the fact that I could never start and finish something in say the allotted 2 hours or what have you.

    I did some serious amounts of dress making when in my late teens and I tended to work on the basis that day one I would do all the pinning and cutting out - then stop. Then another day I might start putting pieces together and say make up the skirt section. By the time I got to putting sleeves in - well, a certain amount of gathering over the top where it meets the shoulder of the bodice, could take me masses of concentration and wriggling and adjusting to inset a perfect sleeve. I would then collapse in a heap with success and think 'blow it, that's enough of that for today'.....then insertion of the other sleeve would be done a day or two later.

    These contestants though are expected to present a totally completed item in whatever time allowance they are given - which they all aim to do, plus the fact that they very often are helpful to each other at the same time - I couldn't work under that pressure, and I certainly couldn't work with t.v. cameras filming me.

    All I can say is 'Well done ladies and gents' - even before they start!! Oh roll on Wednesday and let's get this show on the road........

    Posted 7 months ago #
  2. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    I am really looking forward to the new series, but I agree that I could NEVER achieve what the contestants do in ANY amount of time, let alone the time constraints they are under...

    Posted 7 months ago #
  3. Jean Strange
    Member

    Yes looking forward to the new series too. Like Brenda I did loads of dressmaking when I was younger. My Mum was a bespoke tailoress before the war so I just learnt from her.

    Definitely couldn’t manage the challenges in this though!! Also looking forward to Kirstie Allsop’s new show Keep Crafting and Carry On at 5 on Channel 4 this afternoon and every day this week. Could be lots of ideas for all sorts of things!!

    I’m still trying to complete some UFO’s some of which were put away until after grandson’s had moved out as just wouldn’t be able to spread fabric etc out. Have everything sorted to complete two such projects. Hopefully will at least get one started today.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  4. I know I couldn't do any of it.
    If anything needs machining it goes to my mum so that's me out of the contest before I start.

    I managed to finish knitting & stitching up a cardigan this weekend - first in years. So feeling quite pleased with myself

    Posted 7 months ago #
  5. Barbara Stone
    Member

    Totally agree - I have nothing but admiration for them, as they make everything in such a short time. If I've managed to cut out and put tailors tacks in on one day, I think I'm doing well.

    Well done Helen, for making up your cardigan. I actually finished quilting a cot size quilt, then looked at it and though it needs some more quilting, so that's another UFO to get on with.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  6. Oh, how interesting Jean that your mum was a bespoke tailoress - how grand that sounds! but I bet she gave you many pointes and tips in being able to achieve items with a professional look.

    Again, like you, I picked up on the fact that Kirstie Allsop is starting a crafting programme tonight. I did see the odd one or two on the last lot of programmes. I hadn't had any idea until then that she was into craft things; but obviously the thrill of making things is in her genes as well..... Shall be watching her programmes then with interest again. Must check the Radio Times - I do recall it comes on at 5.00 p.m. but can't remember if it's channel 4 or 5 - anyway, it won't take a minute to find out.

    Helen - well done with your finishing of a cardigan - so yes, you should feel pleased with yourself. I can follow patterns with no problems at all, but oh dear the tension leaves a lot to be desired. Anything I knit could be hired out as a flipping marquee. Don't tell me to use smaller size needles - done all that and got the T shirt, but still everything comes up too large.

    UFOs generally - we all seem to be aiming at getting some completely finished whilst this wretched virus is confining us to be indoors; but you seem to have a conveyor belt running all the time Barbara with the amount of quilts you've made over the years. Don't know from where you find the time to stitch as well.....(thinking of Mrs. Wotsit's Millennium sampler you've recently finished for her).....

    Posted 7 months ago #
  7. Thanks for your compliments on the cardigan. I have enough wool left to do another one & a different colour for a 3rd.

    I framed my "virtual Swindon" project at the weekend - that looks quite good as well

    I was looking at the re-subscription gift & have decided that the bag could do with a pocket to put scissors, etc in; so that is a new UFO I have just created.

    My only extra time at the moment is the weekend we should have been away on the bike as I'm still working.

    Is it my imagination or are the evenings lighter longer now we don't have planes polluting the sky?

    Barbara, do Mrs Wotsit appreciate her millenium sampler? Did you get my email last week?

    Posted 7 months ago #
  8. Helen! - you've almost mirrored my thoughts on this year's subscription item. When we first caught sight of it in a Guild magazine at the beginning of the year my first thought was 'Oh, must do something with it to make it 'mine' in some way' - like, as you think, an extra pccket on it or a bit of applique work on the back..just something to make it a bit different to everyone else's.

    Maybe we should suggest to Andrea that come November time when we are all at Leicester (and by which time, being almost the end of the year most people will have had their bag) - we should all have done something to them beforehand so that we can present them in the Sewing Room on the Bring and Brag table - and let Andrea judge which she likes best - and award that person with a little prize...... wouldn't it be a nice thing to do, and it would give us all a thrill to see what everyone's done to their bags....... the fact that there can only be one winner in this little competition would be lovely for the person involved .......and the rest of us would have to promise not to sulk if we were not the winner.... Ha! - what a lovely little bit of silliness to turn our thoughts away from this wretched virus......

    Posted 7 months ago #
  9. Brenda, that seems like a good idea. I'm going to put the pocket on the outside back, need to measure it to see what size pocket it will be. That might have to be my "Virtual Leeds" project :)

    Posted 7 months ago #
  10. Perhaps you could stitch like a little woodland scene Helen and into the pocket place some of your adorable little mice....... so it might seem as if they are inside a nest.....

    Getting myself geared up for the start of Sewing Bee tonight. I shall record it as well as watch. Sod's law says someone will phone halfway through it.....agony! so..... comfy cushions in place, remote (for the time being) hidden from Geoff, and chocolate to hand... Will be thinking of you doing something similar, although your treat might be a drop of something in a glass possibly......

    Posted 7 months ago #
  11. Hi Brenda
    My mice are quite happily moving into their little house one room at a time - they wouldn't like being hidden away in a pocket getting squashed. I have a different idea for the bag pocket.

    My treat last night was being able to watch the Sew Bee when it aired. Under "normal" circumstances I would have recorded it as we go up to our Club after Mick has attended the Committee meeting on a Wednesday. - haven't had a drink for ages now

    Posted 7 months ago #
  12. Hello Helen - and anyone else -

    Really enjoyed Sewing Bee the other night and was stunned at the Tea dresses - some really good examples of sewing there; but the standard was so high I was gobsmacked - and this is only Week One.....

    The makeover item was interesting - whereby they had to re-style a shirt - or shirts - but I must confess I didn't like the one that won it at all...it just looked as if the chap had flung a sleeve over one shoulder and scraped other bits to the side and tied them in. Didn't appeal to me in any way, but I must say I do like the way Patrick and Esme always seem to find something positive to say about these re-make items. It's not so much the standard of sewing I feel, as the imagination that needs to be drawn forward to make something out of something else. Not sure I could come up with any good ideas myself. Interesting though.....

    Going back to the subscription bag Helen, when do you get yours I wonder. Mine should be due sometime middle to end June I think - but of course that's mid year, so there must be several Guild members who've already got theirs by now. I'd love to know roughly the size of the bag, it's a bit difficult to tell from a photo...

    Feel chuffed that I finished my Strawberry Sweete Bag yesterday afternoon - only me being me I haven't got a strawberry in the middle of mine; I changed it to a flower. Call me awkward (and many do !!).... but I thought I might prefer a flower...... I feel very pleased with it.

    So - thank you Lockdown, one UFO now finished (but sadly several more to go yet....)

    Posted 7 months ago #
  13. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Got my sub gift this week. I've measured it - it is 40cm wide and 29cm high and is essentially flat from front to back. There is plenty of scope for adding a pocket to the back, say, and I dare say it might even be possible to deconstruct it and add a lining (hmm, now there's an idea)...

    Posted 7 months ago #
  14. Brenda, well done on the Sweete Bag. I'd never call you awkward, just inventive - there's nothing wrong with personalising things
    I get my subscription gift in March - actually it's just the right size to use as a knitting bag, could do with another for my A4 sewing projects.

    I'd never manage the makeover task on the Sewing Bee - it takes too long for the garments to tell me what they want to be

    Hope everyone has a good weekend stitching - we're going to have a lot of stuff to show off at Leicester

    Posted 7 months ago #
  15. Bloody 'ell Mrs. Berrett...... you are dealing with an 'ancient' here...so just tell me (child) - wot is 40cm x 29cm in old money.......

    Lovely afternoon so I'm off out in the garden. Bit windy but seeing as I'm sweeping up stuff I shall soon be grateful for a breeze to keep me cool...... Mind you anyone with a bit of a brain in their head probably wouldn't go sweeping anyway......I'll sweep it all one way then the wind no doubt will pick it all up again and blow it back to where it came from in the first place.......

    I'll go searching for a tape measure later on, I'm sure I've got one that tells me on one side what things are in old money and the other side in centimetres ..... sounds quite large though if Helen makes reference to putting A4 sewing projects in it.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  16. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    OK Mrs Midgley are you ready for this?...

    The bag is 15.75 inches wide by 11.375 inches tall

    Still not happy???

    How about: 15 3/4" x 11 3/8"

    Will that do for you? {wink}

    Posted 7 months ago #
  17. Second version does it for me Mrs. Berrett - fractions ! - Yes! - did 'em at school, so I'm with it now.........

    You do have to be kind to old ladies you know, so thank you for your assistance......

    Sadly I still remember that there were 4 farthings to a penny....... (yes, I'm that old.... and we had those little gas lamp things at home, they gave off friendly little 'pops' every so often. Crumbs you've got me going down memory lane there so I'm finishing this before I depress myself......

    Thankfully I also remember the 60's and jiving wearing a sticky-out frock. I was a good jiver; and won a pearl necklace in a competition at the Ilford Palais. Still got it in my box at home......

    In the meantime - the bag is quite large then isn't it - more than I'd thought it would be.....

    Posted 7 months ago #
  18. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Mrs M jiving in a sticky-out frock - now there's an image that just won't go away!!!

    Posted 7 months ago #
  19. Barbara Stone
    Member

    Mrs. M. you aren't the only one who can remember doing fractions at school. And 4 farthings to a penny, but can you remember the guys who came round to try and collect any farthings you had, when they phased them out? I don't know whether or not it was only in London, but my mother assures me they came from the Royal Mint, which at that time was in Debden, about 10 miles from where we lived, and they went from house to house collecting them. They did give you pennies in return, I hasten to add, so don't think it was a scam.
    I also remember the Ilford Palais - never went into it, mind you, I think I must have had a very sheltered upbringing, and my dad wouldn't have approved! Besides, I never had a sticky out frock to wear when jiving!!
    Now, the bag - got mine a couple of weeks ago, and its big enough for me to get my latest project in quite easily, but I definitely think it needs a scissor pocket, so that will be a thing to bear in mind, when I've finished making quilts, UFO's and the millions of masks I'm making for the staff of our local Sainsbury's. Made a couple for my own use, went shopping with one yesterday, and apparently there is quite a penchant among the Sainsbury's staff for skull and crossbone material I was using. Got asked for at least 4 and apparently another 5 or 6 said they wouldn't mind one either.
    Helen, in answer to your question about the millennium sampler - well Mrs. Wotsit hasn't got it yet. Its still sitting on my spare bed, as it was going to accompany me to Swindon, before she got it, and of course, now I'm not allowed out. And yes I did get your e mail. Will reply soon.
    So, sewing Bee last night - well, the transformation challenge was a bit of a different thing wasn't it? Wouldn't have worn any of the things they came up with, but I can appreciate that they were all quite good. It was the mens shirts that I thought were fantastic - where on earth did she get that material with Llama's on do you reckon? Oh well, I can but dream of being able to make clothes like that - even If not in the time they were given.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  20. The Ilford Palais - those were the days! I used to go on a Saturday evening - didn't tell my Dad. I think he thought I was at the Cranbrook Hall which was more up market!

    Posted 6 months ago #

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