Where To Buy Vintage Sewing Patterns

Are you looking at where to buy vintage sewing patterns?

If like me you love the styles from the 50’s and different eras then you will no doubt be looking for some vintage sewing patterns. There are still plenty around in circulation whether used or not.

You can find plenty of remakes from companies such as McCalls, Simplicity and Vogue along with many more but if you are after a true vintage pattern you may be lost as to where to go.

Where To Buy Vintage Sewing Patterns

There is so much to know about sewing patterns before working with them, some of the older styles may have different language and phrasing compared to the newer ones so that is something to keep in mind.

If you are looking at ways to store or organize your sewing patterns I have plenty of nifty ideas. Including vintage, PDF and more.

Let’s get into looking at where to buy vintage sewing patterns shall we?

Auction Houses

Don’t ever underestimate an auction house, they aren’t always furniture and useless junk.

I have a couple in a few mile radius from my house and each one is quite different to the last.

where to buy vintage sewing patterns

I have found so many bargains at these, including a very expensive vacuum my grandparents once had we all loved. But I have also had vintage sewing boxes, fabric rolls, sewing machines and overlockers.

There is a whole host of things you can find at these places, you just have to look.

Tip: Auction houses have open days to come view the stuff you wish to bid on if you have your eyes set on an item go and view it. Make sure it fits the standards of what you expect.

If it is a machine, see if it has the working parts and if it has been tested and working. If it is a credible auction house it will test electricals before selling.

You can often google auction house near me, find the website and they often do special themed style sales each week/month. You can also bid online for many of them so you can be at home and collect the following day.

Local Markets

Not many towns and cities hold markets anymore but if they do it is a great place to find vintage anything.

We have one in Leeds at the back of Leeds Market and it is outdoors, there is a guy who sells fabric and is super cheap but I often see other things like buttons, braids and patterns on his stall or neighbouring stalls.

Look for these in towns you live near or are passing through on a day trip out to see if you can spot any patterns.

Online – eBay Or Etsy

Probably the most simple and easiest way to find vintage sewing patterns. This is particularly helpful if you have a certain style, brand or pattern number in mind.

Tip: Before buying make sure you check the product information to see if it has been cut. If it has you want to check the size and if it is complete.

Etsy is a great place to find more boutique and crafty style items.

Etsy is the home of handmade so it fits perfectly that you can find vintage sewing patterns on there.

eBay is just as good but you can often find they aren’t as in-demand so the competition and price may be lower than Etsy.

Knowing where to buy vintage sewing patterns is the first step, especially for online orders. Making sure they are as described, uncut/unused and in good condition is vital.

Charity Shops

One of my best places to find sewing patterns in general is at a charity shop. They often have quite old styles too as many of the items that go into charity shops are those who are in the older generations.

Charity shops are quite often less picked over and can have some real treasures.

Tip: Make sure the pattern is complete before purchasing.

If you tend to shop in them often like we do then you can build up a relationship with the staff. Many of the staff are very warm welcoming people and will often tell you they have some in the back or can save them for you.


A carboot is a place you go to sell all the stuff you don’t want anymore but don’t want to give away. A lot of the time you can find great cheap stuff for the home and I often find loads of craft stuff too!

Tip: If there are more than one and you are interested, don’t be afraid to ask for a deal.

Also, check the item is intact and complete before buying.

One of my biggest successes was at a small car boot we found 2 large size boxes of sewing patterns. It was under sad circumstances that the 2 young women were selling them but were so happy to see how excited I was at finding them.

You may only find one or two but it is worth looking, especially if you don’t mind wandering around in the early morning sunshine!

Boutique Shops

Boutique shops in smaller villages and towns that like to sell a number of different things can often hold treasure like vintage sewing patterns.

They may be at a higher price point than the other options on the list but still a good place to hunt out vintage sewing patterns.

Sewing Shops

Probably one of the most common places to look but always try. Sewing shops will generally only sell new sewing patterns but they sometimes hold events where you can swap with other shoppers and trade.

Also if the staff are knowledgable and kind they might be able to point you in the direction of where to buy vintage sewing patterns locally.

Plus there is always the bonus of picking up some cute fabric while you are there!

Re-use & Recycle Shops

I love these styles of shops and they are becoming more and more popular which is great.

The main focus of these shops is to use waste or excess stock from people, companies and other businesses to sell at a cheaper rate or bargain price to everyday people.

These often get in fabric roll ends, curtain samples, beads, books and even sewing patterns. You can google recycle shop or re-use shop in your area to see if any pop-up.

Vintage Fayres

The key to this is that it already targeted to vintage lovers! We often stumbe upon fayres in towns and like to have a look at whats on offer.

You can often see a couple of older ladies knitted or crochetting behind the staff which I love (very jealous I don’t know these skills yet). You can ask them if they have any vintage sewing patterns.

You can also explore the tables and see if you see any available. I have found one or two in the past but it is also worth a look. Especially if you have time and they are local to you.

Facebook Sewing Groups

A really useful source of information and community I found over the last year was a sewing group based for UK members only. There are a tonne of local groups within the UK, USA and across the world.

Look for a similar group within your area wherever that may be and join. It is a handy source of help from fellow sewists and many will often allow buying and selling.

My particular group has a special market day where people can buy and sell and trade their items. You can keep your eye out for sewing patterns to buy and get delivered right to your door.

I love this resource of where to buy vintage sewing patterns as it is with people who already value the patterns, they are well looked after and people who generally share the love of the hobby/craft as you do.

Also, don’t be afraid to ask in sewing groups on Reddit or Facebook for suggestions on places.

I hope you found this informative and useful when looking at where to buy vintage sewing patterns. If you have any spots you like to go or know of any other resources you wish to share I would love to know in the comments below!

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