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Hand sewing my quilt and catching up on the Great British Sewing Bee.The Bee is a sewing competition programme in which a bunch of people who know their way around a sewing machine are given challenges every week, and judged on their results. Each week a couple of them get sent home. Or maybe only one, seems like it varies. It’s only four programmes long so I guess they have to fudge things a bit. One contestant mysteriously disappeared halfway through the first programme, never to return.
Most people agree the best thing about the Bee is Patrick Grant, who is one of the judges. He is a British fashion entrepreneur, having bought and relaunched one of the oldest Savile Row houses (Norton & Sons) and done a bunch of other wonderful stuff. I’m laughing because I’ve just read on Wikipedia that he “clothes a number of notable public figures, including the Duke of Edinburgh, George W. Bush and Mumford & Sons“. What a motley crew!
Patrick is incredibly easy on the eye, superbly dressed (of course) and totally sweet and charming with it. I venture he has set many bosoms a-heaving around the country since being on the Bee.
But apart from gazing at dreamy Patrick, I find the Bee to be quite entertaining and informative, in fact it’s generally good enough to make up for the fact that it’s presented by that hideously boring daft posh bird Claudia Winkleman (who should be arrested for crimes to smokey eyeliner. And fringe.). I was quite shocked that the fabulous Tilly was knocked out early on, but that casualty aside, my three favourite contestants have all made it through to the final, which is tomorrow night. Lovely Ann, who is 81 (!! I had her pegged in her early 70′s, you go girl!) and has mad skills with a needle – I loved her story about making one of her first skirts out of a pair of her father’s old trousers. Sweet Sandra – who couldn’t adore all her photos of her three daughters growing up in matching dresses? (And I loved when she admitted making the first dress was a joy, the second a bit of work and the third one a proper chore.) And the loveable Lauren – youngest of the lot at 27, with her Scottish accent and breaking into tears every 30 minutes. They are all great, and I don’t know who I most want to see win. Maybe Lauren…. because it will probably do the most to encourage a new generation of sewers.
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I’ve decided to dive straight into my first big crochet project. I’ve done the scarf, the dishcloth, and some granny squares, but now I’m yearning for something “proper”. I felt like what I needed was something with lots and lots of stitches, something I could settle down and sink my hook into. I looked around and found this pattern by Attic 24 on Ravelry. It seems to be quite popular and the photos of everyone’s projects were really inspirational. Most inspirational of all is the way Lucy (Attic 24) writes about the pattern. Her enthusiasm is infectious. I’ve splurged a bit and I’m making this up in alpaca chunky wool. Not going to be cheap, but this is going to be a luxurious treat!