The Great British Sewing Bee 2022 – Sewing Patterns – Series 8 Episode 3
It’s the third episode of series 8…
In the third episode of The Great British Sewing Bee series 8 the contestants are challenged with Summer Week. For episode three we have put our detective hats on to discover the sewing patterns from independent designers and commercial pattern houses used in Sewing Bee TV show. The patterns below are all matches or inspired by the designs used in the third episode of the Great British Sewing bee series 8. If you haven’t already seen our ultimate guide to the Sewing Bee do take a look.
The third theme was Summer Week and all 10 contestants had to make three garments. The challenges included making a shirred midi dress, upcycling garden hammocks into summer garments, and a made-to-measure two-piece co-ordinated outfit for having fun in the sun to fit a model. Take a look at our sewing pattern suggestions below, we’ve tried to find the exact patterns used but where we haven’t been able to we have plenty of suggestions so that you can recreate these looks at home for your handmade wardrobe. Kate also talks through her favourite pattern options from the episode on YouTube in our special mid-week sewing bee vlog.
If you want to chat about the episode and the challenges then do join us each week in our Facebook group event.
Sewing Bee: Pattern Picks
Pattern Challenge 1: High Fashion Shirred Midi Dress with Puff Sleeves
The first challenge of the third episode was to make a shirred midi dress with puff sleeves. The makers are put to the test needing to master sewing with elastic to create a light and breezy dress. The garment is constructed with 15 rows of parallel shirring on the front and back bodice pieces. The skirt waist, sleeve heads and wrists are also elasticated. To recreate this look we would recommend the Sofia Dress by Victory Patterns.
We also have a blog post with lots of other sewing patterns that use shirring in their design. The shirred dress has become a summer staple after appearing on fashion blogger Instagram accounts and then the high street. Over the last couple of years we’ve seen other styles that have had their ‘Insta-moment’ such as the off-the-shoulder dress but we think the shirred dress will be around to stay for summers to come. These dresses are so appealing because they are an easy and comfortable fit for different body shapes and bust sizes. Shirring comprises of several horizontal lines of elastic thread on the inside of the garment that gather the fabric together. Positioning shirring at the wrists can give a lovely billowing sleeve or at the waist and bust a custom silhouette. As with many trends we see that translate from the catwalk to the high street, you can now recreate this style for your handmade wardrobe. Here we have brought you our favourite indie sewing patterns which have a shirring element and some top tips on mastering this skill for yourself.
Sofia is a wonderful mix of pretty and comfortable, featuring an elasticised, shirred bodice that allows for easy fit and wear. You will find full instructions on how to sew shirring. Choose from three garment styles along with several sleeve options, which can be mixed and matched to create different looks. The dress features a waist-length bodice and an A-line skirt with optional pockets and lining. Two top options are also included, allowing you to make a crop with a small ruffle hem, or a peplum top with a larger ruffle hem. Pair them with your favorite high waisted skirt or pants.
Choose from four sleeve styles. Sleeves 1 and 2 are similar in style, featuring an elasticated puff shoulder and ruffled hem. Sleeve 1 is cap length, and Sleeve 2 is elbow length. Sleeve 3 is a bishop sleeve with an elasticated puff shoulder and rows of shirring at the wrist. Sleeve 4 is a bias-cut bell sleeve that is accompanied by a shoulder strap, designed to ensure coverage of bra straps.
Sizing: 0 – 18 (approx. UK 6 – 18) or 14 – 30 (approx. UK 16 – 32). Please check the size chart. Available in the shop: Yes, PDF or PDF + printed copy shop pattern.
Transformation Challenge 2: Garden hammocks into summer garments
In the upcycling challenge contestants had to upcycle garden hammocks into a summer garment. Specific patterns weren’t used for these tasks as contestants had to create a garment from existing materials in a fixed time so it’s a bit tricky for us to make sewing pattern suggestions based on these design ideas.
Made-To-Measure Challenge 3: A two-piece co-ordinated trousered outfit
In the last challenge of episode three, all the contestants had to make a two-piece co-ordinated trousered outfit for their model for having fun in the sun. The contestants chose to make a range of two-piece garments from crop tops with trousers to shirts with shorts.
A pattern released that would let you recreate the two-piece summer look is the brand new Saguaro set from Friday Pattern Company. The Saguaro Set is a two piece woven set made up of elastic waistband pants and a pullover top. This is the perfect outfit for road trips through the desert, sunset walks on the beach, or dancing the night away. The pants feature roomy pockets and a waistband with a drawstring. The top has a plunging V neckline that includes an optional tie closure. You can wear the top forwards or backwards. This flowy set is easy to sew and fun to wear with endless options for customisation.
Sizing: XS – 7X (approx. UK 6 – 34, based on our standardised size chart). Please also check the designer’s size chart and finished garment measurements. Available in the shop: Yes, PDF or PDF + printed copy shop pattern.
Here are our pattern picks for the contestants and where sewing patterns have been self drafted or hacked we have suggested an alternative.
Man Yee’s two-piece lemon bustier co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: Lemon print bustier and box-pleat shorts.
Pattern: Simplicity Vintage 1950s Bra Tops S1426.
Sizing: D5 (4-6-8-10-12) R5 (14-16-18-20-22), approx. UK sizes D5 (4 – 8), R5 (10– 18/20). Please check the size chart and finished garment measurements. Available in the shop: Yes, paper pattern.
Brogan’s two-piece Spanish inspired summer co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: contrasting border and bow.
Available in the shop: Not at this time.
Annie’s two-piece African wax print co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: elasticated waist and tie.
Pattern: New Look N6677.
Sizing: A (4-6-8-10-12-14-16) which is approx. UK sizes A (4 – 12) based on our standardised size chart. Please also check the designer’s size chart and finished garment measurements. Available in the shop: Yes, paper pattern.
Richy’s two-piece “Sex in the City” co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: cowl neck and pleats.
Angela’s two-piece crop top summer co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: zip fly and pockets.
Pattern: McCalls 7962.
Debra’s two-piece sailing co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: Cotton poplin and pleats.
Pattern: Top: Simplicity S8840.
Available in the shop: No, out of print, try reselling sites such as Ebay and Etsy.
Gill’s two-piece shell top co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: peacock feather print and bias binding.
Pattern: Butterick B6795.
Sizing: A5 (6-8-10-12-14), F5 (16-18-20-22-24), which is approx. UK sizes A5 (4/6 – 10), F5 (12 – 20/22) based on our standardised size chart. Please also check the designer’s size chart and finished garment measurements. Available in the shop: Yes, paper pattern.
Cristian’s two-piece cheese plant co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: wooden buttons and pockets.
Pattern: Simplicity S9157.
Sizing: AA (34 – 42) BB (44 – 52). Please check the size chart and finished garment measurements. Available in the shop: Yes, paper pattern.
Steve’s two-piece tropical beach co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: Contrast fabric and elasticated waistband.
Pattern: McCalls M6972.
Sizing: KIDS (3-4, 5-6, 7-8), ADULT (S-M-L-XL). Please check the size charts and finished garment measurements. Available in the shop: Yes, paper pattern.
Marni’s two-piece ribbed crop top co-ordinated trousered outfit
Features: ribbing and piping.
Pattern: Simplicity S9114.
Sizing: H5 (6-8-10-12-14) U5 (16-18-20-22-24), approx. UK sizes H5 (4 – 8), U5 (10– 18/20). Please check the size chart and finished garment measurements. Available in the shop: Yes, paper pattern.