Great British Sewing Bee 2024 - Episode 7 - Lingerie Week - Pyjama Shirt Making + Sewing a Bustier Dress

We're passionate about sewing and dressmaking at Sew Me Sunshine, and we love watching the Great British Sewing Bee every year. Every week we will break down the episode and sign post you to some sewing patterns and fabric.

The Great British Sewing Bee is back for 2024 and this year marks it's 10th season! We wish all the contestants the best of luck and know they will make some incredible garments. 

This week we are looking at episode 7 which was Lingerie week. The contestants were tasked with making a pyjama shirt, transforming shapewear to make a new outfit and sewing a made to measure bustier dress.

Pattern Challenge: Pyjama Shirt

The first challenge was to make a pyjama shirt with contrast coloured flat piping (aka piping without the cord). The pattern that instantly came to mind was the Carolyn Pyjamas by Closet Core PatternsThe Carolyn top features a classic notched collar, curved hem and breast pocket with three sleeve options. Personalise Carolyn by adding contrasting piping details for an elegant finish.

Top Tip: Closet Core have a tutorial about making bias binding and piping that you can read here, and they have a tutorial on sewing piping that you can find here

The contestants used viscose satins for their pyjama shirts, but it could also be sewn in cotton and viscose lawn

A selection of viscose satins at Sew Me Sunshine

A selection of Liberty Tana Lawn at Sew Me Sunshine

Transformation Challenge: Make an original outfit from shapewear

In the up-cycling challenge the contestants had to make an original outfit out of up to two pieces of shapewear and up to two metres of stretch lace. Everyone's ideas were unique and creative so we aren't able to signpost to specific patterns or fabrics.  

If this challenge has inspired to sew yourself your own shapewear then we have found some sewing patterns for you. 

L-R: Jalie Shapewear 2572 (first two pictures), Megan Nielsen Rowan, Friday Pattern Company Elysian

Even the non-specific shapewear patterns - Rowan + Elysian could become shapewear when they are sewn up using the right fabrics. Shapewear tends to be a nylon elastane blend. We have heavyweight econyl fabrics in stock that are perfect for sewing shapewear. Econyl is 100% regenerated nylon yarn derived from pre and post industrial waste such as the discarded fishing nets retrieved from our oceans via the Aquafil SpA regeneration plant. This yarn boasts the same features as virgin nylon in terms of performance and quality but has the added bonus of being manufactured in a fully sustainable way.

ECONYL® Recycled Nylon Heavier Weight - Burgundy

Made To Measure Challenge: Bustier Dress using boning 

In the made to measure challenge the contestants had to make a bustier dress that used boning to fit their model.

What is a bustier dress - a bustier is a form fitting garment for people with breasts. A bustier focusses on emphasising the bust, whereas a corset works on reducing the waist. Bustier dresses often include boning. 

We don't stock any specific sewing patterns that are bustier dresses but we have found some great ones online. 

L-R: Simplicity S1183, Vikisews Ornella, Simplicity S9779

Rose Cafe Bustier Dress by Daria

The contestants used a variety of fabrics for their bustier dresses, but tulle, lace, viscose and satins heavily featured throughout. 

Top L-R: sandwashed modal lawn + sandwashed viscoses
Bottom L-R: sandwashed satins

Selection of tulles from Sew Me Sunshine

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