Friday, November 1, 2013

Repro Patterns and Where to Find Them

Reproduction patterns are a great way to wet your feet with vintage patterns without having to deal with all of the issues that come with actual patterns. I'm just going to give a mini review and some info about some of the repro pattern companies I've used. You can find everything from hand traced copies of original patterns to completely remastered and multisized patterns.

The Big Four

Simplicity, Butterick and Vogue do have reprints of vintage patterns. Pros: cheap, easy to find, loads of styles. Cons: They took perfectly good vintage patterns that actually fit on a person and added, oh, five or so extra inches of ease.
Eva Dress

Some Eva Dress pretties!

Eva Dress has a huge selection of 20s-50s patterns! Most of them are single sized but they have recently been putting out multisized patterns. The website is easy to navigate and you can search by decade or bust size. I've had great success with their patterns.

Past Patterns

A 1930s Past Pattern in my stash

Past Patterns carries repro patterns from the 20s-40s as well as a historical patterns. Most of the vintage patterns are Vintage Revivals, which are hand drawn copies of vintage patterns (one sized) with a photo copy of the original directions which may or may not be legible.  They also do have some multisized patterns as well but I've not used any of them. Their website is not the greatest and the pictures on the main page of each decade are often tiny and hard to see so you have to click on it to tell what it is. But they are great for hard to find styles like 19-teens. And they are based out of my town!

Sense and Sensibility

Sense and Sensibility is a darling pattern company that does historical as well as vintage patterns. They come professionally printed and drafted and have good directions. Now, the only time I sewed one of their patterns, it came out way tiny! As in my husband had to cut me out of my first muslin. So I haven't quite figured out the ease for their patterns but lots of people have had good luck with them and I'm planning on giving them another go sometime!

Wearing History

Even more Wearing History love!

I love Wearing History! I have 9 or so patterns and have sewn them all. Some several times! This company focuses on 40s and 30s patterns but has recently been branching out into historical patterns as well. There are two pattern lines, Resto-Vival and Signature Styles. The Resto-Vival patterns come straight from vintage patterns but with modern markings. They include original directions (but not a photocopy!) and retain the original vintage fit. Some are multisized and some are not. The Signature Styles are based off of vintage patterns but with reworked step-by-step instructions and many also have been adjusted to reflect a mix of vintage and modern fit. Recently, Wearing History has been re-releasing patterns in e-pattern format for those of you who love e-patterns.


  1. I really like Decades of Style. Those patterns I have tried have been easy to work with and comes in several sizes.

  2. I have been ogling over all of Wearing History's patters. Especially the Land Girl and Playsuit patterns. I've ALWAYS wanted a sailor 3 piece playsuit.

    1. Those two are my favorite! And I love that I can now make all sorts of denim bottoms from the Land Girl pattern. :)

  3. I too want to try out Wearing History's Patterns someday! It's a bit on the expensive side for me now, but they have SUCH cute patterns, and I think it would be an easier way to transition into the 1930s styles I love but may not have all the technical skills for. These new ones probably have more instructions to explain things for me!

    1. You might try some of the new e-patterns since they are more affordable than the paper patterns.

  4. I'd love to try a Wearing History pattern one day. I also like that vintage Vogue has been out for years and has a wide array of styles available. I haven't tried one of their patterns yet but I do have one I'd like to try. Such lovely outfits you've made!

  5. Lovely post. Your Eva cape suit is as chic, cool and timelessly pretty as can be. If I was a sewer, I'd be all over that wonderful pattern, too.

    ♥ Jessica

  6. New Vintage Lady creates her own reproductions of vintage patterns, in larger sizes. I've never actually used one of them, but I'm a big fan of her blog.

  7. I got married in a vintage vogue dress, though I had a professional dress-maker make it for me :-)