You. Asked. For. This.

Behold!  For I bring unto you, sewing patterns from the 80’s!  Love them or hate them, these patterns and styles never quite die and I cannot bring myself to get rid of any of these patterns.  Full disclosure, I intend to make several of these patterns, I will point them out to you because they are straight fire.

While I enjoy writing about my creative process, and I flatter myself in thinking that I have built up some good practices, one habit has yet to be reigned in.  As I work on a sewing project, I tend to destroy the area around me.  I know, I know, I should do better.  But often when faced with the reality of only having a few minutes here and there to work on something, I’m not going to spend a second on tidying up, I’m going to get into it and go as far as I can before I’m yanked away again.  My attempt to reign in this habit has resulted in a ritualistic cleansing of my space when a project is finally finished.  I spend a weekend setting everything back up and cleaning every surface.  Here’s the before and after:


I don’t know if I ever mentioned it here, but for two months I had my own studio space.  It was glorious.  Cramped, but oh so productive.  Those days are long gone and I am now working with a little less space and a whole lot less storage.  As I was attempting to restore a semblance of order, I decided to whip through my pattern trunk and see if there was anything I could part with.  In organizing, I got all of my 80’s patterns in one place, so here ya go!

The 80’s knew a thing or two about athletic wear.

Shoulder pads!

I unironically love all of these.

I may use some stash fabric to make this one soon!

Now, I want your full attention for this last pattern.  It is the jewel of my 80’s collection and I love it.


This is it. The is the whole decade. You are welcome.

As with all historical sewing, it is important to get the right material for the job, so as soon as I find the freshest, shiniest polyester around (and shoulder pads for the heavens) you can bet that I’m going to make this baby up and wear it whenever I have an excuse to do so.

Those are my 80’s patterns!  I just can’t bring myself to throw any of them out, I’m good at imagining scenarios where looks like these might come in handy.  Of I just take after my grandmother and I’m slowly turning into a hoarder.   I can tell you which one my husband thinks is more likely. . .




7 Comments Add yours

  1. kellycb says:

    I have this sub-conscious guilt when I find myself liking an 80s pattern, as if I should be grossed out but I’m not (at least all the time). It seems as if our culture has been telling us the 80s are awful, but to me many are actually not as bad as I thought when I was growing up (there are plenty of exceptions, though)! Thus, I have kept…or rather am hoarding, too…some of the 80’s patterns my mom has given me! They are now technically vintage and there were so many designer patterns from the 80s. Your collection is great and that last pattern with the peplum is to die for – so killer. Can’t wait to see you make something of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tilly Gibson says:

      I totally agree with you, the 80’s bad raputaion is not deserved!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Elena says:

    I think a lot of styles from 1980s – as well as any other decade – were actually cool. In 1980s. They did have some timeless pieces though with a twist, and those remain cool. Your last pattern is one of those. It could have easily been 1940s, just reduce the amount of ease and the height of shoulder pads. It could have been 1920s – get rid of the shoulder pads and slim down the sleeve head. Doesn’t fit into 1960s, but you get my drift! Definitely make it! It will be very 2020s! (What is our current decade called, anyway? 2010s?)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tilly Gibson says:

      I didn’t even notice the resemblance to 40’s styles, but I totally see it now!


  3. Elena says:

    Also: I prefer your sewing room “destroyed”. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. niveraswings says:

    I recently made a pair of 80’s trousers from a purple plaid fabric and they are the most obnoxious yet amazing trousers I own. I really do like 80’s (also un ironically) fashion, it’s a lot of fun and patterns from that decade are so darn cheap to buy online now.
    I look forward to seeing you sew your way through some of these!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ms. Kitsch says:

    I can’t believe I missed this post! Finding it this morning was perfect timing though, because I love it and really enjoyed reading it!

    Oh wow, those patterns are SO fabulously 80’s! I’m excited to see your take on the last one when you make it, because I know you’re going to do an incredible job! If anyone can pull off the absolute height of 80’s fashion, it’s you, Tilly! You always knock every style out if the park!

    Also, I can totally relate to destroying a space while working on a sewing project. I’m mid-project right now and, for example, my coffee table is covered in patterns, thread, bits of fabric, etc, and it looks like an absolutely chaotic and disorganized mess. Not to mention the piles of fabric and sewing notions around me…organizing can wait though, we’re in our creative element! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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