Sewing Bee: Behind The Seams | Episode 4
Another week, another fabulous hour in the sewing room with all our favourite sewists… and quite the jaw-dropper of a crafty necklace from Esme! This week was International Week, and we were treated to a tour of the world from the comfort of our own sofas, as the contestants were challenged to make a French breton top, a stylish sarong transformation, and a garment inspired by Mexican artist and feminist icon, Frida Kahlo. So if you loved episode 3 of The Great British Sewing Bee 2021 as much as we did, let’s dive straight into it!
International Week was kicked off in style with Patrick and Esme’s Pattern Challenge, which saw the contestants tasked with creating a French breton top. Stripes being the official uniform of the French navy, we thought Adam would be in his nautical element with this one – but he surprised everyone by grabbing a rainbow coloured fabric, and finding it all beret beret difficult. Whilst most contestants nailed the pattern matching of their stripey fabrics, many were defeated by the neck binding, and an array of other problems; Farie failed to finish her garment leaving her in last place, Kathryn’s top featured a few extra holes that were entirely unintended, whilst Adam dubbed his efforts a solid ‘Titanic’ when he’d been hoping for a Carpathea, leaving Serena victorious in challenge one.
Next up was the fabulously creative Transformation Challenge – or, in other words, the really fun part of the show – in which the contestants were, this week, handed a pair of sarongs, and tasked with creating a stylish garment for any gender, any age. Adam, who was immediately reminiscent of the sarong-tying classes he’d experienced in his cruise ship days, threw everything he had at the challenge (and the mannequin) to create a show-stopping off-the-shoulder dress that won him first place. Unfortunately for Farie, challenge two wasn’t problem-free either, and the sewist was forced to downsize her designs after ditching one of her two sarongs entirely. After forgetting to engineer any workable sleeves, last place was taken by Serena, whilst Rebecca’s gorgeous animal-print 2-piece was doted on by both Patrick and Esme.
Made to Measure is always such a spectacular way to end the show, with each contestant able to bring their own pattern to the table as they strive to achieve the perfect fit for their model. This week’s focus was Mexican artist and feminist icon Frida Kahlo, and led to a spectacular carnival of a catwalk filled with creative and colourful ensembles inspired by the artist’s life and works. Adam creatively added a black trim ‘eyebrow’ to a boned bodice in homage to Frieda’s iconic face, whilst Kathryn cleverly alluded to Frida’s alleged affair with Trotsky, with a Russian doll-printed fabric obscured by lace.
Amidst all the beautiful pieces, there was a clear winner this week; Farie wowed the judges with a statement dress inspired by Kahlo’s ‘Broken Column’ artwork, complete with hand frayed fabric detailing, and a striking oversized bow. Unfortunately, this week also saw us bidding a fond farewell to Kathryn, who said of her time in the competition,
‘Sewing is a very solitary hobby. We’ve all been locked down for so long haven’t we? So it was like being let out and being able to share among such talented young people. It was amazing.’
Let us know your thoughts on this week’s episode of The Great British Sewing Bee, Series 7, in the comments below. Don’t forget, for oodles more gossip and sewing room chat, you can check out our weekly dose of Behind The Seams, with our own guest experts, Sarah Payne, Samantha Hamilton and Alistair McDonald, which hits our Facebook page on Thursday afternoons!
Looking for ways to keep yourself busy until next week’s Sewing Bee installment? Check out our sewing projects and tutorials right here, and craft your way through to Wednesday!