The Great British Sewing Bee casts off

The Great British Sewing Bee casts off (Ingram Publishing)

After the success of The Great British Bake Off, the nation has become obsessed with baking.

And following on from this, a new craft-based reality show is preparing to entertain the great British public and hopefully encourage many people to begin sewing and knitting.

The Great British Sewing Bee begins on BBC2 on April 2nd and pits amateur enthusiasts against each other, each aiming to be crowned the ultimate winner.

To begin with there will be eight contestants and judges May Martin, an acclaimed needlework teacher, and Patrick Grant, an award-winning menswear designer, will set them three difficult tasks.

Then they will send two of the hopefuls home at the end.

The first challenge will require the contestants to follow the same pattern, while the second will ask them to alter an everyday garment and the final one will see them trying to make something to fit their model.

They're thrown right in at the deep end and in the first episode everyone must create an A-line skirt, change the neckline of a blouse and make their own day dress.

Commenting on the contest, Ms Martin told Mail Online: "Needlework classes stopped in schools about 20 years and I'm really picking up the pieces.

"A lot of people who come to see me have no skills at all; they don't even know how to sew a button on. They turn up with carrier bags full of clothes needing repairs."

The experienced sewer added: "Sewing might have gone out of fashion but it's never gone away… I hope this show will encourage more people to have a go at sewing, that it will give them the courage and confidence to realise they can do it."

While predominantly focusing on sewing, this is a skill all knitters need to be able to grasp, especially when it comes to finishing off garments and embroidering detailed sections.

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