Get the Look: Esme Young
The Great British Sewing Bee is almost here! Back for its ninth series, we cannot wait to see what the contestants and judges get up to. To fill the Sewing Bee void in our life, we’ve been delving into some sewing inspiration for Sewing Bee judge, Esme Young. Simple A-line silhouettes are key to Esme’s look. She wears things that have understated details, but there is often some clever pattern-cutting involved, so her clothes are far from boring. Esme’s colour palette leans to neutral colours or black, with art-style prints thrown into the mix for colour. Esme always jazzes up her ensemble with statement necklaces which we love. One of my favourite things about Esme’s style is how she pairs dressy pieces with trainers for brogue-style shoes to edge the outfits up. You don’t see her tottering around in heels, she struts in flats. I love that about her. Her rebellious spirit comes through in the way she dresses, so it’s no wonder she is such a style icon.
First up, we are sharing sewing pattern matches for recreating some of our favourite Esme looks. Then we’ve got a few options to share that have strong Esme vibes…
This is one of my favourite pictures from the Sewing Bee series 8. Esme is on patrol… in style! This dress is so stylish with interesting pleats at the front for shaping. If you want to recreate this look, The Assembly Line Multi-Sleeve Midi Dress would be a great option. It has a classic silhouette and the all-important in-seam pockets. The magic happens when you add the sleeve of your choice. Pick from four sleeve styles; a basic long sleeve, a puff long sleeve with a button cuff and a 3/4 box pleat sleeve with a cuff, as well as a sleeveless version. A versatile little number.
When I was researching for this blog post I came across this incredible picture of Esme in a sailor-style top. Quite fitting as that was a theme last series. If you wanted to recreate this cool ensemble, the Ready to Sew James Sailor Jacket is a good match. This is a new take on the traditional fisherman’s smock that has a neat and strong construction. I think Esme would approve of the big kangaroo pocket.
Esme really knows how to wear a bold print. I just adore this picture of Esme in her workspace wearing a super cool shift in an art-style print. It’s a great piece to have in your wardrobe. The Sew Over It Ultimate Shift Dress is a good option for replacing this look. The pattern is designed with beginners in mind, and will guide you through the basics of dressmaking. Learn how to create bust darts and attach all-in-one facings like a pro. With no tricky zips or buttonholes to master, simply pop the dress on over your head and fasten with a hook and eye.
When we were thinking of doing an Esme sewing inspiration round-up, this dress jumped to the front of my mind. I remember thinking how clever the combination of a shirt and tie front was. It is a twist on a classic shirt and I love it. The McCalls M8286 delivers on those features. The tie-front shirtdresses wraps around the waist for a cinched-in silhouette.
Esme does glam in the coolest way. It’s all about the fabrication, keeping the cut sleek and modern. This outfit is jazzy on top and classic on the bottom. To recreate this look, you need to track down a fabric with a bit of sparkle and a classically cut top with a modern feel. I’ve found the pattern for you, so that’s one job done! I think The Maker’s Atelier Maker’s Top would be perfect for this. It’s a roomy pull-on top with a stand collar that is suitable for beginners. Hurrah!
Another glam look I adore is one Esme wore on The Great British Sewing Bee Christmas Special. I just love how Esme styled a sequin dress with trainers and tights to dress down the look in a very cool way. Trend Patterns TPC18 Twist Dress is a good place to start to sew this look. You just need to extend the sleeve length if you want a longer sleeve.
You can do a lot with a modern jacket in your wardrobe, and Esme adds hers to inject a little cool factor into what could be just a simple summer dress. I think this is an essential piece in any Esme-inspired wardrobe. My pick to recreate this look is the Modern Sewing Co Over Shirt pattern. The dropped shoulder and square cut make the whole garment feel roomy and comfortable, and this casual feel is balanced out with classic shirt details.
That was just a flavour of looks from Esme, so here is a selection of dress sewing patterns that I think channel Esme’s brand of cool.
- I AM Patterns Barbara Shirt and Dress
- The Assembly Line Kaftan Dress
- The Maker’s Atelier Oversized Shirt Dress
- Style Arc Melba Dress
- Merchant & Mills Box Box Top and Dress
Esme wears some really interesting tops that feature clever pattern cutting, but still look sleek and simple. Here’s an edit of a few top sewing patterns I could imagine Esme rocking that could inject her style into your handmade wardrobe.
- Merchant & Mills Ellsworth Shirt
- Style Arc Lucia Knit Top
- The Maker’s Atelier Tie Neck Shirt and Dress
- Style Arc Bessie Woven Tunic Top
- The Assembly Line Long Sleeve Tunic
- Tessuti Fabric Ines Shirt
If you liked this round-up of patterns, you might enjoy delving into these indie sewing pattern designers that we think