I totally love this programme, so I’m delighted to see that there are three Sewing Bee specials for Children in Need on 21, 23 and 24 October!
I’ve been doing my own bit of sewing this week – I’m definitely ‘in the zone’. This means I’ll sicken myself, and do no more sewing until New Year.
With the Sewing Bee in mind, I decided to try out one of the patterns by Tilly Walnes, who was a contestant on the programme a couple of years ago and blogs at Tilly and the Buttons.
I chose the Coco pattern as I liked the shape and felt it would be something I could make several times in different fabrics, and also because I’ve never sewn with knit fabric and I was really keen to have a go.
The pattern includes variations for a tunic or top, with additional details such as a roll neck and pockets. And there are different sleeve length options too.
I decided to go for a simple top with a standard neck and no pockets, with three quarter length sleeves, as I’m always pushing up long sleeves!
The pattern itself comes in a lovely, colourful packet and is printed on thick, substantial paper, with a colour instruction booklet. I measured myself and chose the appropriate size, then traced the pattern onto plain paper.
I’d chosen a mustard coloured Ponte Roma fabric which has a slight stretch. I bought it from a local fabric shop for about £7 a metre which is a bargain as it’s lovely, thick fabric.
It was easy to cut out – I weighed the pieces down onto the fabric and used a cutting wheel, which I think is more accurate.
Tilly gives very clear instructions about how to make up the top, and keep the fabric from stretching too much which can often be a problem.
She also gives lots of handy tips, such as using a zig zag on horizontal seams to allow them to stretch while putting your garment on.
I used my overlocker to finish off the seams, but the fabric didn’t fray at all so this isn’t crucial, I just enjoy having nice tidy ‘guts’ to my garments!
It took me about 3 hours in total, and I have to say the sizing was really accurate – it fits brilliantly well, particularly across my chest. I had to take it in a bit further around the hips but I knew this in advance from measuring myself.
And here’s the finished article!
All in all it was a lovely, easy make and I can see myself making lots more in the future. It has also inspired me to try more of Tilly’s patterns, and also to move out of my comfort zone and try using new fabric and techniques.