Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Great British Sewing Bee day trip out

Back at the end of April, E and I visited a very special shop opening. Lauren from the Great British Sewing Bee was opening her very own (along with her husband Ayaz) haberdashery shop. It's about an hour and a half's drive from my house but it was well worth the journey. We turned up about an hour after the official opening time but we still had to queue for ten minutes outside. The shop was heaving, so many people, it was amazing to see. And of course it was so lovely to meet some of the contestants from the show - Lauren, Ann and Tilly were there, as you can see in the above photo, and I had a little chat with Stuart who was an absolute delight. There are lots of photos on Tilly and Lauren's blog, some of which appear to have me in the background! Don't quite know how that happened, I wasn't posing honest!!
Of course we had to spend some pennies having travelled so far to visit and I'm always keen to support independent businesses. E and I decided to buy some fabric to make a bag each to take with us on holiday. I think I will make a tote bag as per the tutorial on Lauren's blog. The fabric I chose is the brown floral one, E surprised me by choosing a pale pink floral after hating pink for the past 5 years. We also got some pom pom makers (great fun), a cute apple tape measure for E, a seam ripper for me (this unfortunately gets a fair amount of use when I'm sewing) and some fabric squares. I also bought a Colette Hazel dress pattern. Everyone on t'internet seems to be raving about Colette patterns so I thought I would give one a go. 

We had such a fab day, including a delicious lunch at a local Italian restaurant. Unfortunately we didn't have time to visit any of the numerous charity shops we passed on the way home. There seemed to be one every other shop at one point. I was desperately trying to stop myself from shouting "Stop the Car!" at my husband.

Not too sure what I will make with these but I may use one or two when making the bags. I really wanted to buy the GBSB book but they had run out at the shop so I ordered a couple of copies from Amazon - one for me and one for my Mum. Lots of patterns in there that I would like to make but I decided on the dress that Stuart made in the first episode. If you watched the show, you may remember it was made in the green and navy Chinese lantern fabric above but I dug out some fabric I bought from the charity shop a few weeks ago. Three metres of grey floral fabric for £3.75, not bad at all and it meant I wouldn't feel too bad if I messed up.

I only took one photo whilst making this. Here is the lined bodice on Deirdre my dressmaker's dummy.

And here is a photo of the nearly finished dress. I tried to fit a lapped side zip and managed to break the sewing machine needle when I hit one of the zip teeth, consequently breaking the zip as well. I have unpicked and bought a replacement zip and put off fitting it for the last two weeks. In the meantime I have made three other dresses, one is just a wearable muslin though.  After the zip disaster I picked up a dress pattern which doesn't need a zip or buttonholes. It's a New Look Easy 2 hour pattern hence the reason I have made 3 in the past couple of weeks! I really must face my zip phobia though.
I've cut out the pattern pieces for the Hazel dress and will make a muslin of the bodice to check for fit before cutting into the actual fabric. So many plans, so little time. Don't worry, I have still found time in the evenings to crochet in front of the telly. Have got some photos of stuff I have made over the past couple of months.
It was a fantastic day trip out and I'd definitely go again. Lauren's shop also has an online shop so do check it out and see what gorgeous fabrics etc. she has available.
Finally, just a little reminder about the Bloggy Blanket that I added some crochet squares to. I still have it carefully packed away under my coffee table. If you would like to add some squares to this blanket, please either contact me or leave a comment here so we can get the blanket moving and growing again. It's all for a very good cause. Thanks.   


  1. Looks like a great day. I know exactly what you mean about wanting to stop the car for charity shops.

  2. Hi, Joy from Daisy Row

    should be in contact with you as she has volunteered to do some more squares for the blanket.

    It seems that many people went to visit Lauren's shop. I hope she's still busy and the shop will continue to be a success.

    Love from Mum