Great British Sewing Bee 2020 Sew-along Lock-down Style! Week 3 – Dungaree Dress

Maybe 3 or 4 months ago I ordered the fixings to make a dungaree dress out of old jeans. I have wanted to have a go at one of these for AGES. Of course, I totally got sucked into life and didn’t make it. This weeks Great British Sewing Bee seems to have offered me the ideal opportunity to actually get cracking and make it.

It’s been a labour of love. No sewing pattern has meant making it up as I go along and I feel like I have spent endless hours topstitching!

Yellow thread top stitching

The yellow top stitching thread was brought for a trouser alteration a long while back and came into it’s own this week! Sadly it ran out before the dress was finished, but I have a happy hack to replicate the heavier weight of top stitching thread that saved the day and allowed me to get finished.

Having said that, I have been thwarted by family a bit this week. My sewing room is part of my bedroom and a couple of times this week I’ve gone to sew only to find the room occupied. Such is lock-down life! There are people in the house all the time! To be fair I’m really pleased with how we are all getting along for the most part, though the thought of time alone in the house in utter silence and no chance of interruption does actually thrill me…..

Back to sewing… The dress has been made from 2 pairs of jeans and lined with a kind of tye-dye style fabric that was some sort of African tunic that I’ve been cutting up and using for various projects for a while. I wanted to line it, but use something not too different in colour for the lining so there would be less risk of it showing on the edges.

I had 4 pairs of jeans to pick from for the project
Reverse of the bib

My husband was pretty hilarious when he first saw me in the dress, doing a full-on Patrick and checking the edges. He complimented me on my top stitching 🤣🤣

I originally planned to have a fuller skirt, but would have needed to use another pair of jeans to get this to work and in the end, I think the result is pretty flattering. Plus it’s a dress with pockets which is frankly all of the good things 😊

The belt was a last minute addition because I felt the waist looked wrong. I had used the wait bands from both jeans as the straps (they are too thick really….) and without a waist band it looked a little odd.

All the way through this one has been pretty challenging. There have been lots of fiddly bits to get sitting right with the heaviness of the demin, and trying to cut pieces from the shapes I had to work with wasn’t always easy – I made some mistakes along the way! I think this is probably the kind of project I enjoy most though. Having to problem solve along the way and work out how to put pieces together. Plus I love deconstructing the jeans at the start and seeing the work that has gone into them.

I have watched episode 4 of the Bee and have NO IDEA what to make this week. It might have to be something even more lateral that this dungaree dress…. We shall see!

Here’s hoping you are enjoying the Bee as much as I am. Was so worried for Liz this week, but she totally pulled it back (it’s OK to have favourites right?!)

May you manage to safely see some more people as restrictions have been slightly eased this week and have lovely people to talk to if you encounter any supermarket queues.

Bec x

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