The Great British Sewing Bee Season 2 Venue - Metropolitan Wharf, London - exterior
The Great British Sewing Bee Season 2 Venue - Metropolitan Wharf, London - exterior BBC

The Great British Sewing Bee Season Two

In the second season of The Great British Sewing Bee, Claudia Winkleman hosts and May Martin of Denman College ( the Women's Institute) and Savile Row's Patrick Grant judge the contestants. 

The Great British Sewing Bee Location - Season Two

Season 2 of the BBC reality television series, The Great British Sewing Bee was first broadcast in 2014 and was filmed in Metropolitan Wharf in the East End of London, 70 Wapping Wall, London, E1W 3SS. The wharf consists of five 19th Century warehouses on the banks of the River Thames, which has since been converted into work spaces and apartments.

The contestants can be seen taking refreshments at the now defunct "Gastronomica" café at 73 Garnet St, London E1W 3QS.

The Great British Sewing Bee Season 2 Venue - Metropolitan Wharf
Metropolitan Wharf entrance - The Great British Sewing Bee Season 2 Venue
Metropolitan Wharf entrance - The Great British Sewing Bee Season 2 Venue

The contestants were:

Cerina - Cerina Nichamin, lives in Hampshire with her husband, Peter, two daughters, two dogs, two goats and a brood of chickens, and has been sewing for almost 40 years.

Chinelo - Chinelo Bally, a Nigerian-born recent media graduate, living in Essex with husband Tunde (she jokingly describes as being her "quality control officer"), has been sewing for only two years. She was taught by an aunt, and makes clothes for her church choir, as well as having made "dozens" of outfits for herself and her sister. She does not use a paper pattern, rather cuts freely from the fabric.

Cliff - Cliff Edwards, who took up sewing three years ago when he retired from his position as a Buddhist prison chaplain. He describes himself as being self-critical.

David - David Dawson, a police constable at Scotland Yard, the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police. He is married to Vicky, has two children and lives in Surrey. He was using crutches during the competition due to recovering from an operation on his leg.

Heather - Heather Jacks, a dressage competitor and instructor, lives in Leicestershire with her Royal Medical Corps officer husband (Andy) and Jack Russell dog (Roly), and has been sewing almost 40 years, including making her own wedding dress.

Jenni - Jenniffer Taylor, a resources manager at a software company in Walsall, who first started sewing 18 months ago by making her own wedding dress. She is the lead singer in a band in which her husband plays lead guitar. They live with their dog, Renton.

Julie - Julie Grommet, a housing estate officer in West Yorkshire and mum of three who began sewing in 2009. She lives with husband Stephen and describes herself as thinking she can turn her hand to any task.

Lynda - Lynda Lewis, a learning support assistant at Billingshurst Primary School, Welsh by background but now living in West Sussex, she is deaf and a signer was provided for her. She was encouraged to enter the competition by her daughter, Sarah, for whom Lynda made both her prom and her wedding dress. She bought her first sewing machine shortly after Sarah was born.

Simon - Simon Cantrill, a weaver who works in the Bradford Industrial Museum (mill) housed in Moorside Mills, Bradford being the centre of much of the UK's textile and garment industries. Simon's father, Ken, also worked in the mill.

Tamara - Tamara Melvin, a children's entertainer and yoga instructor, lives in Surrey with her husband and two children Lily and Charlie, taught by her mother to sew from the age of ten years. Her great-grandmother worked for a tailor who taught her mother to sew.

The contestants were challenged to make and alter garments including a sleeveless tunic top (won by Heather), alteration of a long woollen skirt (won by Tamara), a made-to-measure silk nightgown in 5 hours (garment of the week by Julie), a skirt with box pleats and lapped zip requiring precise pattern matching (won by Heather), alteration of two men's shirts to make a new garment (won by Tamara), made-to-measure men's pyjamas (garment of the week by Lynda), leggings (won by Lynda), transformation of a basic T-Shirt (won by Cerina), a made-to-measure wrap dress in stretch fabric (garment of the week by Chinelo), child's dungarees with flat felled seams (won by David), child's fancy dress made from a pillow case, sweatshirt and track pants (won by Cerina), a made-to-measure strapless prom dress (garment of the week by Lynda), a showerproof bomber-style anorak with rib cuffs and waistband (won by Tamara, also earning garment of the week), alteration of a button-back sleeveless top in heavy double-knit jersey by adding leather (won by Lynda), velvet trousers tailored to fit themselves, a 1930's blouse, a vintage coat, a necktie (won by Tamara), creation of child's occasionwear (e.g. bridesmaid dress) from a wedding dress (won by Chinelo), a made-to-measure couture gown with Heather being crowned the overall winner of the series.

Historical background details were provided on The Huguenot Weavers, Chintz, Lycra, and the origin of children's fashion, by experts such as Dr Kaori O'Connor, Debbie Moore OBE (Pineapple Dance Studios), Amy Miller Curator of Decorative Arts at the National Maritime Museum, Clare Rose historian at the Royal School of Needlework, Dennis Nothdruft, curator at the Fashion and Textile Museum, Jenny Tiramani from the School of Historical Dress, Kate Williams Historian.

Final gown produced by Heather
Final gown created by Heather


Metropolitan Wharf interior
Metropolitan Wharf interior
The Great British Sewing Bee Season Two - Metropolitan Wharf - view from across the river
The Great British Sewing Bee Season Two - Metropolitan Wharf - view from across the river
Gastronomica Café Wapping
Gastronomica Café Wapping (no longer trading)