Fashion Wall Art with Vintage Sewing Patterns

Fashion Wall Art with Vintage Sewing Patterns

Whenever I’m in a thrift store and I see a box or bin full of vintage sewing patterns, I can’t help but paw through them. Usually, I find regrettable patterns for 1980s-era garb. But every now and again, I find wonderful vintage dress patterns that would be perfect for upcycling into fashion wall art.

Vintage sewing patterns at a thrift store

I went through the vintage sewing patterns until I had accumulated the best of the bunch (in my opinion). They were mostly from the 1960s and 1970s and sported retro fashion on the envelopes.

Vintage dress patterns for upcycling as fashion wall art

And while I’ve previously played around with old sewing patterns before, it was usually so that I could upcycle the tissue paper. THIS TIME, it was the artwork on the envelopes that I wanted to use as fashion wall art.

Fashion wall decor with vintage sewing patterns would be perfect for a sewing room or even a walk-in closet. And I would pair the envelopes of the sewing patterns with fabric from vintage sheets!

Vintage sheets to display the old sewing patterns

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Mounting and Displaying the Vintage Sewing Patterns

With my vintage sewing patterns in hand, I selected some vintage bed sheets that had a “Mod” fashion vibe. I also gathered a couple of inexpensive picture frames from the thrift store.

Repurposing the envelopes of vintage sewing patterns

First, I deconstructed a picture frame and set aside the glass and actual frame. Then, I used the cardboard backing as a guide for sizing the fabric that I would need.

From there, I cut out a rectangle of vintage fabric that was approximate 1½” larger than the cardboard insert. Before taking the next steps, I ironed the fabric from the vintage sheet.

Upcycling the vintage sewing patterns as sewing room decor

I carefully folded the vintage bed sheet fabric over on one side and sponged on some watered-down Mod Podge to fuse the fabric to the cardboard.

I did that on all four sides, pulling the fabric taut as I went along.

Decoupage fabric onto cardboard for fashion wall decor

While the Mod Podge dried, I used my iron again on lower heat and carefully used it on each vintage sewing pattern envelope. I knew they wouldn’t go totally smooth, but it gently pressed and flattened them.

Then, I used more watered-down Mod Podge to attach the envelopes of the vintage sewing patterns to my fabric-covered cardboard pieces.

Sewing gifts or sewing room decor with vintage dress patterns

In the meantime, I also cleaned and spray painted the thrift store picture frames. When the paint dried, I was ready to assemble the fashion wall art!

Fashion Wall Art with Vintage Sewing Patterns

Just like that, I had created some fashion wall art that was positively perfect for a sewing room or a walk-in closet.

Fashion wall art with vintage sheets and Simplicity sewing patterns

And there’s zero waste since I can recycle the pattern tissue paper in a project. I just love a net-zero project, and making framed wall art from old sewing patterns and vintage fabric is a perfect example of that.

Sewing room decor by framing the vintage dress patterns

These would also be wonderful as sewing gifts or wall art in a child’s room or powder room. Really, any place where fashion wall art would work!

Envelopes of vintage dress patterns as sewing room decor

And if you enjoyed this upcycling idea with vintage fabric, then you’ll love these braided bracelets from vintage handkerchiefs, too!

braided bracelets from vintage handkerchiefs

Craft on!


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Sarah Ramberg is the owner of Sadie Seasongoods, a website that celebrates all things secondhand. From upcycling ideas and thrifted decor to vintage-centric travel itineraries, Sadie Seasongoods is a one-stop shop for anyone who loves thrifting and approachable repurposing ideas. Sarah is also the author of “Crafting with Flannel” and has been featured in numerous media outlets and magazines.


  1. I adore your sewing pattern art! My mom is a seamstress and would love them. I’m thinking I could copy some of her patterns and use the copies. But I have to question you that you prefer 70’s fashion over…anything. 🙂

    • Ohhh I like 60s fashion more than ANYTHING…70s fashion makes me giggle, though. 😉

    • I love this idea. I have an apron pattern from the 40’s I bought at a Goodwill several years back. Its fragile but i would like to display it. I have to do this and find a couple more to hang on my love. You are very clever. I buy vintage sheets to and make cute blouses.

  2. Denise at Knothead's Landing says

    Ummm, *raises hand timidly* (shut up, I CAN do timid) I’ve probably got quite a few, OK, a LOT of patterns from the 70’s stashed in boxes in my sewing/crafts/junque room. Some of them I actually used. I even made the hubs a hooded robe from a brown blanket from one of them. He looked like a monk. Didn’t act like one though. Nevermind…my kids are hollering TMI Mom! What does that mean? ; )

  3. I have a bunch of vintage patterns that I have never known what I could do with them. Great idea Sarah. I need some wall decor in my craft room these would be perfect and I love that you used vintage sheets rather than card stock. Thank you for sharing at Vintage Charm today. sb

  4. These are so cute, Sarah! I have a pile of patterns from the ’60s & ’70s from my mom’s collection. I’ll never sew with them but they would make really great art. Thanks for yet another awesome thrift store project. 🙂 And Happy Craft Month!

  5. I really like your creative use of fashion history!

  6. Sarah, this is such a great idea!! You really scored big on these patterns! The fabric you used to match the picture is perfect!! I have some old patterns I bought at a yard sale that are the cutest, now I know what to do with them!!

  7. mary scott says

    So cute!!!

  8. Oh, I absolutely love this idea! And I also have many many vintage patterns. What a nice use for them! Great choices with the complementary fabrics, too.

  9. Woah, that’s a brilliant idea! I have quite a few old patterns I inherited form my nan and mu mum, all this sort of style. I kept them out of sentimentality but to make art from them – how lovely.

  10. This came at the perfect time. I was gifted 2 vintage boxes of patterns from a patient and we are in the process of moving into our dream home in 5 weeks where I will have a sewing studio. These will be perfect for decorating my new space! Thanks for sharing and for the idea!

  11. This is PERFECT for my sewing room decor! What an awesome idea! I buy these all the time at garage sales

  12. You always have the cutest ideas! I wish I had your creativity. Thanks so much for sharing at Throwback Thursday!

  13. Julie Henderson says

    Sadie, I love your framed patterns! I actually did a close variation 4 yrs ago, for my sister. Found 2 toddler/child patterns from her birth yr, and framed them w/ a background matte of pattern pieces. I created some little caption strips which said, “A sister is SEW dear”. Anyhoo, I have a ton of pretty 50s, 60s, & 70s patterns, and I’m inspired by ya to frame some more of them. You rock! Blessings, Julie H.

  14. This is such a fun idea! Seriously, I think I recognize some of those patterns…:) Thanks for sharing this with us on Throwback Thursday~


  15. I love this idea, it is so colorful and unique.

  16. The wedding dress pattern is the one I used for my wedding dress — over 40 years ago! I still have it and can’t wait to frame it like yours — Thanks for this idea!

  17. This is such a cute idea! Love your creativeness. As I took a closer look at the patterns, I realized I actually made the long dress, that really dates me doesn’t it? Lol I made one for my first prom n made another for a singing group I was in from school. It was a cute dress. Thanks for sharing.

  18. Dee Greyling says

    Love your idea BUT would love a copy of pattern Simplicity 7120 that you framed!!! I live in South Africa……

  19. Sarah, These turned out so cute! Love the material you used! This is a wonderful way to display old patterns! Pinned to share. Thanks for linking up for Snickerdoodle Sunday!

  20. These are so darn cute ~ love how you paired them with the vintage sheets!

  21. I have patterns my grandmother used back in thee 30s and 40s so I am going to do this. I have also copied them, shrunk them and printed on card stock about 2×3 punched hole and used twine to make package gift cards. These are always received with joy.

  22. This is truly a darling idea. And, it brings back memories of when my mom would be at her sewing machine.

  23. Oh this is just too cute! 🙂 Love this look!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!

  24. What a clever idea for sewing room decor!

  25. Seriously, we were hot in the 80s and that mauve frame came from my first apartment!! 🙂

    Just playing with you. But really…the 80s were so fashionable.

    Thanks for joining Thoughts of home on Thursday. Your patterns make cute artwork!

  26. What a great way to decorate a sewing or craft room. I have so many of these vintage pattern packets.

  27. I made a mistake on my name. Please don’t publish my email!!!!!

  28. I just love this idea! Thanks for sharing at the Inspiration Spotlight party! Pinned & Shared. Hope to see you again soon.

  29. Now this is absolutely darling! I simply love the vintage fabric and patterns! You are incredibly clever to put the two together in a frame – pure perfection! 🙂

    So glad you were able to join Roses of Inspiration this week! Hugs!

  30. Thank you so much for linking this post up on #HomeMattersParty last week. It was picked as one of our feature posts. You can check it out at While you are there make sure to grab the I was Featured button for your sidebar so you can brag a little. Thanks for linking up and hope to see you link up again.

  31. Saw this on the #HomeMattersParty. This is such a great idea I want to go to thrift store right now.

  32. Those are adorable!! I always remember my Mom having those all around her craft table when I was little! So glad I saw this at the #HomeMattersParty

  33. Oh my! Such a great and clever idea. But, you know, I could have given you the same patterns for free! I’ve got a box of ‘vintage’ patterns that I’ve been thinking about donating to a thrift store. Maybe I ought to frame a couple before giving them away! 🙂

  34. How absolutely cool is this! I have my mothers sewing kit and there may be a few old patterns left in it. She loved to sew and would make a dress for me in the morning and I would wear it that night. I’m pretty sure she made a couple for me from pattern #7120. This brought back so many memories, thank you!

  35. Sarah, this is so cute and clever! I can’t wait to try it out with some vintage patterns that I picked up many moons ago.

    Thanks again for sharing at the Celebrate Your Story! Link Party.

  36. Sadie,
    I love this cute art. What a wonderful way for us “kids” who grew up in the 50s and 60s to repurpose our old patterns. Or, this is cute for anyone who sews. Especially if you have patterns you’ll never use again.

    I admire your creativity. Keep your wonderful blog coming!

  37. Our mom has tons of boxes of vintage sewing patterns. These are the perfect use for them! What a fun way to dress up a craft room. Thanks!

  38. Hello!! I wanted to let you know that your post has been chosen as a Feature post for the Welcome Home Wednesdays Link Party! Stop by tomorrow morning and see your post linked up and grab your Feature Button too!

  39. Good Morning!! I wanted to stop by and let you know that your post has been selected as a Feature Post for the Welcome Home Wednesdays Link Party!! Stop by this morning to see your post linked up and to grab your “Featured” button too!!

  40. Hi! I just looked at your pattern wall art — and was totally blown away! The pattern you show with the wedding dress is the one I used to make my own wedding dress in 1973! I do not have the pattern, the dress, or even the husband any more, but life is good and that sure brought back some memories!

  41. Very pretty and artistic and I love using and not wasting things! Thanks for linking up with Funtastic Friday!

  42. Great idea for a sewing room!

  43. What an amazing idea to use these in a frame and the vintage fabric as a background is giving them really the last touch! So cool and I love these for a walk in closet! I’m happy you shared them at Sweet Inspiration!!

  44. Fantastic, I have patterns from the f

  45. Love, love, love! I have some old patterns of my late grandmother’s. I am going to frame them just like this!! I have been holding onto a collection of vintage items, including an old apron, sewing patterns, old pair of Wiss pinking shears inn their original box, packets of free sewing needles from life insurance companies in Florida in the 1950’s. I hope to get these in a shadow box frame, and hang with my framed patterns in my laundry/sewing room- where my 30-year old Kenmore machine proudly rests on top of my great-grandmother’s antique Singer cabinet.

  46. I have many sewing patterns from the 60’s. They are items that I sewed then. This is a wonderful way to display them. I’ll be decorating my studio with them. Thanks for a terrific idea!

  47. Melissa Storms says

    I just finished a couple wall pegs made from old wooden thread spools of different sizes. These would go with that whole look so perfectly. Thank you for sharing!

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