Sunday, 2 August 2020

Style '79

Sometimes, life and my sewing time just don't co-operate with producing blog content in neat weekly chunks. My current project is a case in point. It isn't finished, but equally it isn't big enough to generate both a 'work in progress' post and a 'finished article' post. So instead, here is a picture-heavy post about what happens when you get bored during lockdown.

I've written before about my love of Style patterns, and how 1979 appears to be 'peak Style' for me. I already owned a few patterns from that year, and one evening found myself idly wondering if there were any more out there. . .

Indeed yes, there are

Obviously, trying to do a search on the word 'Style' produces far more erroneous results than does a search on the word 'Butterick', but it's amazing how persistent you can become you're stuck indoors for weeks. It also has the advantage of being a cheap pastime – late 1970s Style patterns just don't command the same prices online as, say, 1950s Vogue Paris Original patterns (I know, I know, I was astonished too!).

For the most part, patterns for dresses have a blue background to the logo and separates have a brown background, but there are some entirely random mauve backgrounds as well.

Three-piece suit

Dress/top and trousers

I'm entirely distracted by the spotty tights and strappy sandals combo!

Multi-option pattern with interesting front darts

Another half size pattern for my collection

Easier patterns were marked with the black outline and 'sew simple'

Faux wrap front and a hint of the 1940s

I owned (and disposed of, sigh) this pattern, and made view 2

More 1940s influence

Random mauve masthead

This reminds me of Simplicity 4896

I had forgotten how much shoulder yokes were a feature of the time

Another pattern I owned

I made this one, too - the sleeves were a nuisance!

Yet another nod to the 1940s

I did stray from my 1979 remit to buy one pattern from 1983. View 2, with a tie belt, was one of my favourite dresses ever (even though ironing the front pleats was a nightmare!), so when I saw it for sale I had to buy it. I even still have a little bit of the fabric; the stripes are about 1cm wide.


Style’s numbering process seems to have been a bit messy; for example both 2581 and 2604 have a copyright date of 1979 on the pattern envelope, but 2594 has a date of 1978. However, the earliest pattern number I have for 1979 is 2564, and the latest is 2950, so there are potentially almost 400 patterns out there. The search continues!


  1. I have a few Style patterns and remember the Style catalogues in fabric shops! I wish there was a comprehensive directory of every pattern, every make and every version every produced! Fascinating and keep on searching

    1. Not even the pattern companies themselves seem to have been very good at keeping records. I must admit, I'm intrigued by the idea of what one year's output for a particular brand would look like - I think this will be an ongoing project!