Season 2 of The Great British Sewing Bee, which runs for eight episodes, is once again hosted by Claudia Winkleman, with Patrick Grant and May Martin on hand as expert judges.
The 2014 series features 10 of Britain’s top sewers, who in each show will face 3 different challenges to test their needlework skills.
Starting on the 18th of February, series 2 broadcasts Tuesday nights on BBC Two.
Episode 1 – 18/2/2014
The contestants are tested on the three core fabrics in a dressmaker’s cupboard: cotton, wool and silk. The surprise Pattern Challenge tasks the sewers with making a simple tunic top out of straightforward cotton.
The Alteration Challenge requires the sewers to demonstrate their ability to transform a simple high street woollen skirt in just 90 minutes.
Lastly, the contestants face the toughest of core fabrics when they’re asked to fit a made-to-measure silk nightgown.
Episode 2 – 25/2/2014
Presented with a pattern for a pleated skirt, the sewers must match the pattern of the fabric across those pleats without changing its size.
The contestants must next show their ingenuity by combining two patterned men’s shirts into one garment.
Finally, the sewers make patterned, made-to-measure men’s pyjamas, which need to both match across the seams and fit perfectly on their male model.
Episode 3 – 4/3/2014
The judges start off by giving the contestants a surprise pattern for a simple pair of leggings.
Next the sewers are free to turn an oversized t-shirt into a completely different garment, in any way they wish.
Finally, the sewers face the most fitted and made to measure challenge of the series so far.
Episode 4 – 11/3/2014
Scaling things down a little, today’s three challenges test the sewers ability to make children’s clothes, beginning with toddler dungarees.
In the alteration challenge they’re each given a sweatshirt, track suit bottoms and a pillowcase. Using these three items, the contestants must use their imaginations and skill to rustle up a fancy dress outfit of their choosing.
Finally, they need to create a spectacular made-to-measure teenagers prom dress, and to their surprise, the models are people the sewers already know.
Episode 5 – 18/3/2014
The contestants are taken out of their comfort zone when the judges set them three challenges which require them to handle some of the most difficult fabrics to sew with.
The surprise pattern is for a nylon anorak which means ironing the garment could prove disastrous.
For the first time the sewers handle something which isn’t a textile – as a high street top is transformed with leather. Later the sewers pair up to be each other’s ‘fit buddies’ as they’re asked to make a pair of trousers for themselves – in delicate velvet.
Episode 6 – 25/3/2014
Savile Row’s Patrick Grant and sewing teacher May Martin track down an original 1930’s pattern to surprise the contestants with. Without the markings and guidance of a modern-day pattern, they’ll need to figure out the codes to make a complex silky blouse. In order to make the task a true sewing re-enactment, they’re each given an antique 1930’s sewing machine to work on.
The next challenge see’s the sewers reliving the days of ‘make do and mend’, when they’re given a man’s suit to transform into a wearable garment for a lady. Finally, the sewers take on the most ambitious made-to-measure challenge so far, when they’re challenged to create a complex and hefty coat taken from a historic or vintage pattern.
Episode 7 – 1/4/2014
To start things off, the four remaining sewers must demonstrate their ability to drape on the stand by making a dress out of a piece of fabric straight onto the mannequin. Next, they need to alter a dress by adding a pair of perfectly symmetrical sleeves.
Lastly, the contestants bring a favourite garment of theirs from home and create a copy to fit themselves.
Episode 8 – 8/4/2014
To help them decide which of the three series 2 finalists will be crowned Britain’s Best Amateur Sewer for 2014, the judges will set them three tough, couture-themed challenges.
The first task will be designed to test the contestants hand-sewing skills, as they’re asked to make a man’s tie. Though this may sound fairly straightforward, with this being couture week, the judges will be looking for absolute perfection.
In the alteration challenge, the finalists get a choice of wedding dresses from which they’ll need to produce a child’s bridesmaid dress.
Then finally the sewers are asked to fit a stunning made-to-measure couture gown for a model they won’t be expecting.
Once all the challenges are complete, family, friends and contestants will all be reunited in the sewing room to find out which sewer gets crowned The Great British Sewing Bee winner 2014.