Tag Archives: vintage patterns

vintage costume patterns and ideas

As I have been organizing my collection of sewing patterns, I came across quite a few vintage costume patterns I’ve managed to collect over the years.  If you’ve got an eye for detail, here are a few 1970’s and 1980’s treasures to feast upon this Halloween week:clown costume 1975I made a clown costume a few years ago, by sewing together a bunch of bright silky scarves my mother-in-law had given me. It turned out great, and made loose enough, warm clothes can be worn underneath the costume for those in colder climates. Some good (slightly creepy) but simple clown makeup shown above as well.

vintage cheerleader costumeThe classic cheerleader, baton twirler, Jan and Marsha Brady short skirt or dress pattern. Ice skates, roller skates… oh the memories come flooding back from the days I dreamed of being all of the above.

hippie shirt patternOh yes, the hippie shirt. Jazzed up in so many different ways, don’t overlook the turtleneck option, subtle collegiate.

ballerina costume pattern 1975Classic ballerina, sparkly ribbons and rainbows, for Halloween or everyday.

kids cowboy costumeBasic cowboy and indian looks. I have a very easy indian vest tutorial that looks like the cowboy one above and indian headband tutorial for those in the market.

poodle skirt with tractors The poodle skirt, with tractors. Which means that you can really put whatever picture you wish on the bottom and it’ll work… especially if your waist looks as small as the gals in the pattern picture.  (google search:  “where can I find a corset”)

barbie doll clothes patternSo many possibilities here… for barbies. It’s so not fair, Barbies have it all (a dream house, Corvette, closets full of clothes, great hair….) including their own line of patterns.

1980's gunnie sax patternI think I had this outfit, or at least I wished I did in my 80’s childhood. Just go back and watch Say AnythingSixteen Candles or any teen beat 80’s movie to see this ensemble in action. Denim, lace and ruffles all readily available at any local thrift shop.

princess/angel/witch costumesThe easily transferrable princess, witch, angel, nightgown robe garment. With the right fabric and add-ons this costume can be reinvented every year. Just a few last minute ideas thrown your way. I hope your costumes are coming together this year- ready in time for the big day!

a collection of vintage sewing patterns

sewing patterns 1942- todaySewing patterns are one thing I feel no shame in collecting or hoarding, depending on your point of view. It’s kind of like collecting books, creating a pattern library in an admirable, archivist kind of way. -sigh- I could look through them all day. Oh the history of fashion and unlike a picture on Pinterest, all the tools to make the clothes again are right there, in your hands. Here are a few beauties from my collection of vintage sewing patterns:

1960's American Weekly dress patternIt’s no wonder this was a popular pattern back in the day, with a promise of the tiny waist size pictured, who could resist this pattern?
1960's dress and hat patternA style that’s a bit more forgiving in the waist-size department. I’ve been annoyed to find no dates of publication on any of the vintage Vogue patterns- your guess is a good as mine. But thanks to Mad Men, and the dated and very similar McCall’s pattern below, I’m putting this one at 1963.

1961 vintage dress and hat patternLove everything about this one- and the heat transfer page, with the fruits and flowers all ready to do their thing with a little bit of heat.
heat transfer pattern pageThe heat transfer page is kind of like a treasure map you have to decode in the mirror or with an iron.

1965 mens bathing suit patternMen’s bathing suit and jacket pattern from 1965. Love the possibilities- pocket or no, stripes or plaid, sunglasses on or off (mostly off).

bathing suit pattern 1963Swimming suit pattern, from 1963, with all the extras- shirt, scarf and top AND trimmed in rick rack. So glad the high waisted swimming suit bottoms are making an appearance again.
bathing suit 1963 pattern back

Next, I’ll show off some great Halloween costume patterns- or what can now be considered a ‘costume’… perhaps a little something from the 70’s and 80’s.  For a few more vintage sewing patterns look here.

a stroll down memory lane

If you were alive in the 80′s then at least one of the following crafts were hanging somewhere in your house- (perhaps currently still on display in your mom’s house?) Go ahead, take a walk back a few years, I’m not sure we’ve hit the vintage category yet with these patterns- maybe 10 more years? Although, I’m pretty sure I saw a duck on something at Urban Outfitters last week…
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Dream Spinners: Cotton Candy, circa 1983. I had something similar on my bed that year AND I got to paint a rainbow on my bedroom wall.

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Santie Mouse by Luv’n Stuff, circa 1981, I luv the font and layout of this pattern-  truly mouse-istible.

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If you wore one of these vests back in the day… I’m sorry. Keep it on the giant stuff animals please. Wait… these might be also at Urban Outfitters this season- wear with high-waisted cutoff jean shorts.

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Ruthie and the Country Cousins from 1986. I’m pretty sure there were at least three of these ‘cousins’ proudly displayed in my room from 1981 until I went off to college, ‘Past Times’ is right.

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Gone Fishin’ quilts from 1995, I hope this isn’t the first you’ve heard this mentioned but-  if you have a fishing themed room in your house… it’s time to remodel.

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Happy Thoughts, circa 1984. The predecessor to all those motivational, happy quotes you see on Pinterest.

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His and hers pierrot dolls Pierre and Pierette by Elinor Peace Bailey, from 1982 with ruffle wreath- boo yah!

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The Bitsy Kids, circa 1982, BFF’s on horseback.

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Your friends might luv one of these whimsical gumdrop filled jars for their birthday.

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Things Are Looking Up, cross stitch from 1986, probably my favorite. Customize this treasure with appropriately colored furry thread (please tell me they make furry embroidery floss..) to resemble your own kitty.

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Vintage pig and duck stamps, 1983 territory.

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Get your needle and thread ready for this Christmastime neighbor gift idea, circa 1985. Thanks Dale.

If you’re feeling jealous and covetous of any of these craft patterns or actual 1980′s vintage craft artifacts, head to your local yard/garage sale this weekend and pick some up for yourself. Have a mouse-tastic day!