The Great British Sewing Bee

The Great British Sewing Bee

Series 4 - Episode 1

ADVERTISEMENT

Review

The Great British Sewing Bee often gets brushed away simply because it’s not The Great British Bake Off. But only Bake Off is Bake off, and the Sewing Bee has a personality of its own.

Ten new amateurs crowd into a pretty sewing room to face the judges, the immaculate Patrick Grant, who if he’d been around in the 1960s would have been cast as The Saint, and newbie Esme Young, a Hollywood costume designer. She’s brutal, saying after one challenge as she surveys the offerings, “I’m really disappointed.” (That really is brutal by the Bee’s usual polite standards.)

But then Esme, too, is one of those people who can’t help telling us, “I’ll probably find it quite hard not to say what I think” – the standard excuse for rudeness – yet actually she’s sharp and supportive when support is due: “It fits well under her arse” is how she describes a skirt in the Made to Measure challenge. Oo-er!

Meanwhile, the urbane Grant bursts into uncharacteristic, disbelieving laughter when he hears himself use the word “natty” of one contestant’s creation.

Summary

Claudia Winkleman welcomes 10 more hopefuls as the amateur sewing competition returns, with Patrick Grant being joined on the judging team by Esme Young, co-founder of fashion label Swanky Modes and tutor in pattern-cutting at Central Saint Martins art school in London. The first challenge sees the contestants follow a deceptively difficult pattern for a woman's top made up of four pieces, before they have to transform a maternity dress in just 90 mins and fit a skirt to a real model in the final task.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Claudia Winkleman
Judge Patrick Grant
Judge Esme Young
Executive Producer Susanne Rock
Series Producer James Hedge
Education