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The Great British Sewing Bee [Illustrated] [Hardcover]

Tessa Evelegh
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (245 customer reviews)
RRP: £20.00
Price: £12.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

28 Mar 2013
The Great British Sewing Bee is the official tie-in to the BBC TWO series. The TV series looks for the nation s best amateur sewer watched over by judges Savile Row tailor Patrick Grant and doyenne of the WI May Martin as host Claudia Winkleman offers encouragement.

Capturing the creative energy of the series, the book provides an irresistible collection of over 25 projects covering garments and homewares that will delight sewing enthusiasts everywhere. As in the series, the projects offer something for both sexes and all ages. Garments include a flattering tea dress, pencil skirt, unisex pyjama bottoms and a waistcoat. The homewares and accessories include aprons, a stylish tote bag, laundry bag, a selection of cushion designs and three different window dressings. All are complete with instructions and patterns for sizes 8 to 16 - the patterns are also available as a pdf download free with purchase.

Including a number of designs from the TV series, technical know-how and insider sewing tips from the judges, this book will help the beginner achieve professional results.

Frequently Bought Together

The Great British Sewing Bee + The Great British Sewing Bee: Sew Your Own Wardrobe + The Dressmaker's Technique Bible: A Complete Guide to Fashion Sewing Techniques
Price For All Three: £31.00

Buy the selected items together

Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Quadrille Publishing Ltd (28 Mar 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849492875
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849492874
  • Product Dimensions: 20.1 x 2.9 x 25.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (245 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,324 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

What a brilliant but busy summer/autumn I had in 2013!
As well as writing the latest Great British Sewing Bee Book ( which reached #4 Amazon Bestseller) to companion the BBC2 TV programme, I spent sunny days down at Mapledurham, the film location for BBC2's new programme, The Big Allotment Challenge, researching and styling that companion book.

A professional journalist and author of more than 30 books, I've been writing about all things home, garden and making for about 30 years. I've always believed everyone is creative and love to inspire anyone who wants to flex those creative muscles to have a go! I do this by showing-them-how through photographs, illustrations and words. I see myself as a kind of translator - taking what seems to be complicated and making it simple to understand and easy to do for the reader.

I'm loving the current resurgence of interest - passion, even - to acquire lost traditional skills and use them in new ways. I also think, once you have those tools, one form of creativity can inform and enrich another. I live in a particularly vibrant and creative neighbourhood in South East London, which provides me with a constant source of inspiration. I personally believe simplicity in design is often the most beautiful, and this is what I aim for in any projects I produce. I hope that gives people the confidence to develop their own sense of style and creativity.

For me, I've been sewing since I was five years old and my interest in gardening started not long afterwards as I trailed behind my horticulturally-trained grandmother around her vegetable garden and flower garden. I've been writing about crafts and sewing and gardening for more than 20 years in newspapers, magazines and books, and for about five years, I had a regular column in Practical Gardening magazine.

Product Description


'The projects included in the book offer something for everyone, including a tea dress, a waistcoat, a tote bag and a range of cushions.' --Country Homes & Interiors, June 2013

'The official tie-in book to the BBC Two series of the same name provides an irresistible collection of more than 25 projects to sew. They offer something for both sexes and all ages, including garments, such as a tea dress, pencil skirt, pyjama bottoms and a waistcoat, and homewares and accessories, such as aprons, a tote bag, a laundry bag, cushion designs and three different window dressings.' --Daily Mail, 14th November 2013

'If you're feeling inspired by the BBC show, here's the tie-in book, packed with crafty ideas and patterns.' --Heat, 13th April 2013

About the Author

Tessa Evelegh has written more than 30 books on crafts, interiors and gardens. Starting as a journalist, she has worked on top selling magazines including Family Circle.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
227 of 233 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars great book - shame about the patterns 3 April 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I am an experienced sewer and was delighted when the TV series and book came out.
The book is fabulous both for beginners and experienced sewers alike with lots of clear instructions and useful tips.
However I would have happily paid more to have paper patterns for all the designs included. There was just one paper pattern included in the book for a simple top.
I downloaded the patterns I wanted only to find that the pattern for the back button blouse was missing from the list of available patterns.
I decided to make a pair of pyjama pants for my partner and printed off some 30+ pieces of A4 paper which then took over an hour to piece together. When i came to cut the pattern out I found that the markings were incorrect. I doubt that I will make the items I want to because of the effort (plus ink and paper) required to make the patterns before sitting down to actually sew.
I think that this is a great shame as the designs look lovely and I would like to make them all.

Do not let this put you off - if you have the ability to produce the patterns yourself I would certainly recommend that you give it a go. Personally I found it too challenging to accurately piece the patterns together, and would have preferred to either find the actual paper patterns inside the book or even to send off and purchase them separately.
The book itself is fabulous .
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117 of 128 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Things to make and do 1 April 2013
In April 2013, the talents of some of Britain's top amateur needlesmiths are being televised in 'The Great British Sewing Bee'. Through this book to accompany the series, judges May Martin and Patrick Grant hope to encourage viewers to pick up their thimbles and thread their needles. This substantial hardback volume contains sections on getting started and basic skills, before taking the reader through 28 complete sewing projects. There's a glossary, a dictionary of fabrics and a handy index at the back of the book. The authors also also offer a few glimpses at the history of sewing in Britain along the way.

After a brief introductory section, 'Starting to Sew' takes the reader through the process of stocking a sewing box, using a sewing machine, understanding paper patterns and finding fabrics. 'Basic Sewing Skills' then outlines how a project should be approached, and offers a detailed guide to the following tasks: tacking, handstitching, sewing and finishing seams, shaping and contouring, gathering and easing, inserting zips, applying bias binding and making buttonholes. Each section is accompanied by some good, clear photos to help the reader understand each process described.

Thus equipped, we are ready to move on to the most substantial section - the 28 sewing projects. A full-size pattern for the tunic is included in the back of the book; all the rest can either be downloaded, printed and pieced together, or photocopied and enlarged, or redrawn from the illustrations in the book. Each project comes complete with a 'button rating' for difficulty - 1 being the easiest, 5 the most difficult. This rating is indicated in brackets in the list below, so that you can get a feel for the scope of the projects available.
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29 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brill. A good value book 5 April 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I ordered this before seeing the first program. I had read the three earlier reviews and thought it seemed to contain what I was hoping for. On first look I am not disappointed. I am someone who did some sewing at school. But only a year. I did some basic sewing skirts thirty years ago but nothing else except for curtains since until two years ago when I started with patchwork. This rekindled my interest and a few weeks ago I started to make a blouse. This book puts under one cover answers to the problems I have met so far. Things I had forgotten and that which I did not know any way. For example 3 ways of inserting a zip, how to use bias binding and lots of other info. Then there are all the projects. A good variety. I have just spent a happy few hours planning my next project. A good value book.

A useful point I think I have identified is that when you download a pattern the Quadrille website only permits you to download one pattern a day. If you go on to ask for a second pattern the first will be re sent even if you log out from the computer. But next day log on again and able to download another pattern. But once again only one. I am not sure what they think they are achieving by making it this difficult.
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42 of 48 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit disappointed 18 April 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Having really enjoyed watching the program and being a novice dressmaker - ie last made something when I was at school - I thought that the book would help me to start making clothes. Although the book is very nice to look at I was very disappointed by the lack of paper patterns and also by the fact that the patterns in the book only go up to a size 16 and I am a very ample size 18 on top. This more than anything has put me off trying to make anything as I really don't want to try and make a pattern bigger just yet and also I wanted the pattern there not one that I have to print off or as in the case of the really nice blouse that Tilly made having to scale draw the pattern. I would not recommend this book to anyone other than someone who is confidant in making clothes.
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