A WOMAN from Dorset has dedicated her time over the past five years to sewing dresses and shorts for children living in poverty.

Anna Tayler has recently made her 400th dress for Dress a Girl Around the World UK, a charity which aims to provide every girl with a new dress and every boy with a pair of shorts.

The former school teacher has had her dresses turn up in Uganda, Peru and Asia over the years.

“It was a long time ago when I heard about the charity but when I found out about it I thought it was just amazing.

“It’s not just a dress to these girls. It’s confidence, it’s pride and it’s self-worth.

“It’s a fantastic feeling seeing a girl looking so happy because of something I have done.

“The main thing for me is that I am doing something good, and making them with upcycled fabrics, like duvet covers and curtains, and fabric from charity shops.

“As word has got around people are now giving me fabrics, so I am now not short on it.

“I have now got quite quick at it so it only takes me around 45 minutes to make a dress.”

Anna takes photos of all her homemade clothes before she sends them off so she can match it up to the child wearing it.

The seamstress has always enjoyed sewing and has now started her own business teaching people the skill.

Sew Many Things is based in Stoborough, near Wareham, where Anna hosts her informal sewing lessons.

She has been running classes called Sewing Bees, encouraging anyone, beginners to advanced, to join her in creating more clothes for the charity.

“In my last Sewing Bee I hosted in September the people who came along made nine dresses and two pairs of shorts.

“They all said it was amazing and would love to come back and do it again.”

Two of the her previous attendees have now joined Anna in making dresses for the charity.

By popular demand, Anna is now hosting two more on Tuesday, October 8, and Thursday, November 7, running from 2-7pm at her workshop.

A £5 donation will go towards postage and refreshments during the session. To find out more visit www.sewmanythingsdorset.com