Interview with the first Sewing Bee to leave series 7!

Hilary Pullen Great British Sewing Bee 3 Comments

firs bee to leave series 7 Julie


Last nights episode was packed with ups and downs! Sadly is was Julie who was the first bee to leave the sewing room, such as shame as she was so full of personality, she gave Joe a run for his money!

Here’s a little bit about Julie, you can see why she made it to the sewing room, such an achievement to get through to the final 12! Plus read our interview to find out how she found the process and what she will be doing next.

Julie’s first sewing machine was given to her as a Christmas gift and she’s been sewing ever since.  When she finished school, Julie joined a European dance troupe and high-kicked her way through Greece, Italy and Spain for the next few years. Julie’s style is bright and bold.  She makes her own clothes and has sewn prize-winning dresses for Ladies’ Day at the races. She’s yet to try menswear as her partner, Paul, has told her “not to bother, you’re too wacky for me”.

Follow Julie on Instagram, juliepygot 

How did it feel to be filming this series?

Once we got to meet other contestants  –  we had masks on of course and socialising from a safe distance – it was great.  But we had an early morning start the next day ready for the first day of filming…so I needed my beauty sleep !! 

When did you first start sewing and why do you love it so much?

As a young child we were deprived kids and we got the chance to go to a pantomime in Blackburn for underprivileged children.  Afterwards, we all got a sack of used toys and in mine was a little blue metal sewing machine and that was me hooked although I didn’t really start sewing big time till I was pregnant.

Who was your mentor

My mentor was a mixture of school teacher/ mum / and my dear friend on the Isle of Wight.  She is so creative and always looking on the beach for driftwood to make beautiful creations.

What is your favourite garment to sew/or your speciality?

I don’t really have a favourite garment to sew.  I just love sewing and a challenge.

Why did you want to be a Great British Sewing Bee and who did you want to most impress of the Judges, or both?  And when the sewing got tough, was Joe a welcome ally?

I always loved watching Sewing Bee and my friends used to say you need to apply …so I plucked up courage and went for it …and after 3 attempts I made it 3rd time lucky !!!

And of course, you want to impress both judges…

Well what can I say about Joe apart from him being so funny, and a breath of fresh air and he makes light of a bad situation, he makes you feel at ease in a heartbeat.

Describe your experience on first walking into the sewing room on this year’s Sewing Bee, and which challenge were you fearing the most the first week –  Pattern challenge; transformation challenge, or Made to Measure challenge? 

I was so giddy on walking into the sewing room for the 1st time, I couldn’t really believe it.

I feared the Transformation challenge really as it is not knowing what it’s going to be and make it in only 90 mins.

What was your best and worst moment that first week? 

I loved the Buzz around the sewing room once everyone got sewing … My best moment has got to be dancing with Joe, and the sewing of course.

How did you try and stay calm when things were going badly wrong or you ran out of time in the first week?

I did try and stay calm during the filming, but it was very hard.

Do you have an attachment to a sewing tool, and why is it special to you?

My best sewing attachment has got to be a buttonhole foot…just pop in your button and it measures it all out for you.  I have always hated doing buttonholes until this was invented.

In your sewing life: What has been your worst sewing disaster – and your biggest triumph?

My worst disaster has got to be a wedding dress I made for a friend and she was pregnant so each time she came for a fitting she was expanding !!! Good job I had plenty of seam allowance and it turned out well on the day !!

Do you make for family and friends as presents?  And most asked for garment?

My biggest triumph was making my son a leather jacket and I quilted all the lining myself and I was so pleased with it.  I still have it now and that’s 25 + years later…Also headpieces I have made for my dancing friends with feathers and lights – it’s a  real showgirl’s look.

From time to time I make for friends and family, and since last March I have made hundreds of face masks and still making them .

Describe your style, and how much of your own clothes do you make?

I would describe my style as quirky and a bit off the cuff and unique and that is why I love to make my own clothes as you know that no one else will have them.  Since being on lockdown I have never sewn as much and I am about to start to make a winter wool coat next.

Can you give a sewing tip for amateur sewers who have been enjoying the show?

For any amateur sewers  – the tip is to start off with something easy and work your way up and take your time.  No pressure like on the show 😊

Was it hard to keep a secret that you were going to be on the show?

I did find it very hard to keep it a secret about going on the show and even had to tell porky pies to some family and friends.  It wasn’t easy but we all had to do it and keep hush!

What is the best way to describe the relationship between this year’s Bees?

It has been so lovely to be around the other Bees and like-minded people who love to sew as none of my friends sew.  Also, we have a group chat so we are still in touch which is lovely and motivates me to keep sewing and see what everyone else is making.

What will you take away from your experience of being on The Great British Sewing Bee?

I will take away from being on the show to believe in myself and that I have so much to give and learn new techniques.  There is always room for improvement but most of all do not doubt yourself.

Next for you in the sewing world?

Who knows what is next for me in the world of sewing!  I would like to get into millinery, as I love hats.   But I will always sew forever that’s my passion and always will be.

We can’t wait to see the next episode the theme is all about sewing for summer and for the heat! let us know what you enjoyed most about last nights show!

Comments 3

  1. Did the Sewing Bee really make up the term “buffet dress” and if so, why? Nobody I’ve spoken to in the community – professional and amateur sewers alike – has ever heard of that term. We’re thinking it must’ve been created to overcome some copyright issue?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.