I doubt it would have escaped your attention if you live in the UK (and have any interest in sewing), that BBC launched the much anticipated Great British Sewing Bee on Tuesday night. I pictured every single sewing blogger I know hunkered down on the sofa in their pj’s, glued to their screens. Alot of us screaming “I know her!!” when Tilly popped onto our screens! This quote from a Radio Times article is just brilliant..
“If there was anyone cooler, or hotter, on TV this week than Tilly, her bedroom clothes rail stuffed with spankingly cute dresses she’d designed and executed herself, I didn’t see them.”
And boy did it make a very respectable dent in the ratings. Debuting at 2.6 million viewers! (That’s more than Bake Off debuted with back in the day!)
Now this is not a post that’s going to blather on about how amazing the show is. In fact if I’m honest, there were elements of the show that didn’t quite hit the mark for me. Let me very quickly balance that by saying there were some great elements too! (Not least the hottie factor that is Patrick Grant!).
The point I would like to make is this. How good this show actually is, is largely irrelevant. What the BBC are doing here, is tentatively testing the water. Gauging public interest in sewing whilst housing it in a safe, tried and tested formula. It’s a short series. Only 4 episodes. But what it represents is an opportunity to open the door to more sewing and craft related programming in the future. If this show is a ratings winner, they’ll want to do more; and so will every other major TV channel.
I was talking about GBSB (and some other proposals for similar shows) to one of the exec producers of the TV production company I’ve been working with. It really is as simple as this, and I quote
“If sewing bee tails off it will be difficult to get anything else away, if it doesn’t there might be a chance”
So essentially, unless The Great British Sewing Bee can maintain or build on that audience share; the odds of us seeing any more related programming in our schedules, are very much reduced. In my limited experience of dealing with TV peops, it has been very apparent to me that TV networks are very risk averse. They want something tried and tested. Something that they know already is a ratings winner. (That’s why we keep seeing rehashed versions of the same show formats over and over again. That’s why they’ve housed sewing content in a competition format that’s been used time and time again).
I for one, (as you may recall from this post!) would like to see much more sewing and craft related programming on the TV; and judging from your responses to that post, most of you would too.
So really this is a call to arms, in support of The Great British Sewing Bee. It’s as simple as this…..WATCH IT! Watch it several times again on iPlayer, get your friends to watch it, get your family to watch it, and then get them to watch it all over again. Watch every single episode, and preferably at the time that it is on. Blog it, tweet it, facebook it. If it’s not your PERFECT incarnation of a sewing show, no matter! It’s the first sewing show in YEARS; and if you and I can make it a success…..then hopefully it will be the first of many!
So, Tuesday nights, 8pm….be there! OK? (For non UK residents I THINK you can find it on You Tube)