Vintage Sewing Patterns and Sizing-important details

Cute vintage McCalls wrap around sundress for little girls!

Cute vintage McCalls wrap around sundress for little girls!

Finding old patterns, ones that are often decades old that have not been used can be rare. The reason is that in past decades there were fewer patterns produced and when people purchased patterns, they most often used them. A used pattern is still desirable and can still produce wonderful garments and crafts. The vintage pattern envelopes often can show signs of wear and use such as creases, fading, tears, and writing on the envelope but often the instruction sheets and pattern tissue inside can be in excellent condition. Since patterns are made of paper and subject to handling and use, they often show signs of wear which don’t affect the overall use of the pattern.

Generally for the major pattern companies the patterns produced before 1967 had vintage sizing, meaning that the measurements for a size 12 can have smaller measurements if the pattern was produced before 1967.

In 1967 and 1968 all of the major pattern companies went to “new sizing” and the measurements for each size became larger.  So keep this in mind as you choose your pattern. I include either the back of the pattern envelope especially from vintage patterns, or put the size chart in my listings, to help you quickly check the information and make you aware that is it vintage sizing or modern day sizing. However some of the boutique and cottage industry pattern makers can have their own size and measurement charts which can vary widely and it is  best to be sure that you check to see if that information is listed to ensure that you are getting the pattern that will fit you.

Some of the very old patterns, such as those issued in the early 20th century or during wartime, may not have words or printing on the pattern pieces such as pattern number, size and the cutting lines as the modern ones do. The pattern tissue was often blank and usually had perforated dots punched into the tissue to identify the numbers or names on the pieces. These patterns are just as usable as those that had printing although the tissue and envelopes might be a little more delicate due to its age. It is a good suggestion if you purchase a pattern with blank pieces that have only the piece number or letter punched in that you write the pattern maker, pattern number and other details on the pieces to avoid those pieces becoming lost or misplaced with another similar pattern.

All of the patterns on Sewing Pattern Heaven are original patterns and not photocopies or downloaded to disc. If you buy from other sources and are not sure if the pattern is a photocopy, be sure to ask the buyer because reprinting on a copier can distort the size and pattern pieces causing the pieces to not fit together.  Visit to view a great selection of vintage and modern day patterns. Thank you!

Happy New Year!

Wishing all of you a very happy and healthy new year. As we start the new year, I hope you will find time for the pleasure of sewing and crafting. It is not only fun to sew and craft but it’s good for your health too!

Sewing Pattern Heaven will now continue to offer a large inventory of vintage patterns as well as contemporary ones. All of the patterns and books I sell are originals and not photocopies, downloaded or copied to a CD. Most of the patterns I sell are also uncut and in like new unused condition, out of print, rare or hard to find, so what you will find here is the best quality and value.

Looking for a pattern or have a request? I carry many of the patterns in more than one size and if you have any questions or want to add your request to our request list, just email me and let me know what you are looking for. Always happy to hear from you.

The Holiday Season Has Arrived!

Make fabulous Scandinavian holiday pieces for home and gifts.

The busy holiday season is here but be sure to make time to enjoy sewing and crafting wonderful items for yourself, your home and gifts. I always enjoy unpacking my Christmas decorations and see pieces that I made in past years.

Sewing Pattern Heaven has many wonderful patterns, books and kits. Plus I have more items in my Etsy store ( and many more of Vogue, Simplicity, McCall’s, Kwik Sew and Butterick in my inventory, so don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any requests or questions.

I look forward to serving you soon and Happy Holidays!

Halloween and Historical Costume Patterns Here!

Spring has arrived

Gunne Sax designer dresses

Perfect for weddings or prom!

Spring is now here, time to start a new wardrobe that is easy to sew and easy to wear.

This season also begins sewing for prom, wedding, First Communion and more. The patterns on our site is just a fraction of the vintage sewing patterns and modern patterns we have in stock. Contact me if you are looking for any pattern and we will be happy to check our inventory.

Vogue designer patterns are among the patterns we feature. The cost of these special patterns keeps rising but we will continue to offer them at affordable prices and shipping.

Please browse our site and contact me with any questions or comments. We hope to serve you soon. Remember that we ship to all of Canada, the US and Australia and most of Europe.

March brings spring sewing

Anne Klein Summer Suit

This year already seems to be zooming by. For many, March seems to be coming in like a Lion – severe weather of all variety seems to be affecting many of us. We all look forward to the cheerful arrival of spring and an opportunity to sew another season of wonderful clothing and accessories.

Colors are brighter, fabric texture is lighter and the fit is easier and cooler. The Anne Klein Vogue sewing pattern shown here is a great example of a fashionable summer suit in bright citrus colors, ready for work and casual wear.

As you begin a new season of sewing, take a moment to check your closet. What garments are always your “go to” clothes? Which ones make you feel good when you wear them and which ones just no longer have an appeal to you.

It is a great time to do some spring cleaning of your pattern and fabric stash. Treat yourself to some patterns with a fresh look. I invite you to browse my store for some great selections. This store is just a fraction of my extensive pattern inventory, so please if you are looking for any pattern, contact me. I enjoy hearing from you and always am very happy to be a “matchmaker” to help you find that pattern you have been seeking for so long, or just one that fits your style perfectly. Thanks and Happy Spring.

Winter Coats, Jackets, Polar Fleece – Dress like a star!

Gorgeous Coat by Oscar de la RentaCute Hooded Cape, Capelets and Hats for Little Girls

For many of us in northern hemisphere, it seems that winter is hanging in there! As I write this, we just had another unexpected snowstorm. As the winter continues, we also want to keep not only warm and cozy, but also dress fashionably.

Sewing Pattern Heaven provides a great selection of not only vintage sewing patterns, but great modern day patterns by all of the top pattern makers. You can find high fashion Vogue designer patterns by the top designers in the world. By sewing your own couture garments, you can dress like a Hollywood star on a budget!

Our prices and shipping are reasonable and we provide quick shipping! Don’t miss getting some of the best patterns out there to enjoy while the weather is still cool!

Looking for a Vintage Sewing Pattern?

Do you have a pattern from the past that you would love to find? Do you have a favorite pattern that is becoming tattered but you want to keep using it?

I often get “wanting to find this pattern” requests but as you will read, there is more information that I need to find your match. Rag doll and toddler dressesWhen searching for patterns, remember that the pattern companies all reuse their pattern numbers over and over. And often the number from one year to the next will be for an item totally unrelated to the first issue.

Most of the major pattern companies use four digit numbers and they have used those numbers for decades.

As a pattern seller, it helps me a great deal to help match a person with the pattern they are seeking if they let me know what type of pattern it is, the pattern number, what decade it was issued and the size. For example, Simplicity 2556 when issued in 1969 might have been misses bell bottom pants but when it was issued in 1986, it could be a child’s dress. Being as specific as possible helps you find the exact pattern you need.

Another issue with vintage pattern is condition. Buyers should be aware that most patterns are lightweight paper and can yellow, tear or fade with time, especially those that are 30, 40 or more years old. Patter tissue is very lightweight and can easily sustain damage. Even the pattern envelopes that are a bit heavier weight paper often shows signs of what some sellers call “shelf wear” which can be as minor as crinkles in the paper to tears, rips, yellowing and creasing. It is always beneficial to take a moment and ask the seller more questions about an old pattern before purchasing, if you feel the description or pictures are not clear. Even current patterns can show wear from handling or just storage in tight file drawers, so often finding “mint condition” patterns is not always easy or reasonable. If you want only patterns in excellent condition be sure to get clear pictures and ask for complete descriptions.

Since fewer patterns were issued in past days, more of these patterns were used. The home sewer had to stretch her budget during times like the depression or war time, so they often would buy a pattern and use it over and over. These well loved patterns have a history of their own and a special character.

Sewing for the New Year

A great resolution this year is to make time to sew! I know that I often put off my sewing time but this year, my goal is not only to sew more, but to keep a pictoral log of what I sew each week or month. Not only will this keep you motivated, but give you a true sense of accomplishment. So think about being good to yourself and take time to sew, quilt and craft more this year!

Sewing for a holiday party

If you will be attending a holiday get together, finding the right pattern for the right occassion is important. Some gatherings may require formal wear, which can vary from cocktail dresses to full length gowns for women and tuxedos for men.

Vogue patterns are renown for offering the best designs from the top names in the fashion world. For many of us, the prices for these gowns in the retails shops are outside of most budgets. But thanks to Vogue partnering with famous designers, you can make one of their gorgeous gowns for a fraction of the price.

For example, Badgley Mischka is a favorite designer of Hollywood stars and celebrities. This pattern not only has classic style, but all of the glamor needed for a special party or event:

Visit my store for more designer patterns. Thank you.