All the products we feature on Gathered have been chosen independently by our editorial team. We may get a small commission if you click on any products you see on this page. Learn more.

We’ve Made It bonus episode: Chinelo Bally, author, dressmaker and former Sewing Bee contestant

Chinelo Bally, author of Freehand Fashion and So Chinelo talks about what inspires her, her top dressmaking tips and her time on the Great British Sewing Bee

Chinello Bally, dressmaker, author and former Sewing Bee contestant

In this episode, we’re delighted to be joined by past Great British Sewing Bee contestant, author and dressmaker Chinelo Bally. We chatted to Chinelo about how lockdown helped her to rediscover her creativity, her sewing inspirations and what it’s really like to be on the Sewing Bee. Plus she shares some brilliant tips for novice sewers!


Chinelo is the author of two books about dressmaking: Freehand Fashion and Sew Chinelo, both published by Pavilion.

You can find the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Acast or wherever you get your podcasts. Alternatively, you can use the player below to listen to the episode online.

Projects of the week

This week, Sarah’s getting arty and is feeling inspired by Alys Paterson’s gouache butterfly art project. To make this project, you need to paint butterflies onto paper, then cut them out and fold them in half before sticking them to a sheet of paper. This creates a fantastic 3D effect! It would be a fun project to do with children too.

Zoe has been exploring our collection of rock painting ideas and is looking forward to trying them all out with her children.

One good thing

Sarah has been getting into the BBC series Great British Menu. She finds it very relaxing to watch the skilled chefs at work and it helps her to forget the pandemic for a little while.

Meanwhile, Zoe is still loving her socks knitting project! She loves it so much that it’s her one good thing for a second episode running.

Chinelo is really into making shirts at the moment and has enjoyed trying different kinds of shirt. She’s particularly loving shirt dresses. “They’re so easy to style!” she says.

Maria dress pattern

Receive a free dress pattern when you sign up for the Simply Sewing newsletter

To celebrate the return of the Bee, our friends at Simply Sewing Magazine are giving away a free Maria maxi dress pattern when you sign up for their email newsletter (you can cancel at any time). Follow the link to sign up:


Photography by Claire Pepper.

Sew Chinelo by Chinelo Bally is out now in the UK (Pavilion, £20)

Sew Chinelo cover