As you might imagine, I have an ever-growing stash of vintage patterns. But I never really considered myself a collector; I've always intended to use the patterns. (I'll admit that I've actually looked down on the idea of collecting vintage patterns without the intent of sewing from them.) However, lately I've noticed a change in my thinking. Readers, I think I may be . . . a pattern collector. Let me tell you what happened.
It started when I became fixated on Hollywood patterns, specifically those from the 30s or 40s with an actress's photo featured on the envelope, like the darling one pictured above. (Which, by the way, is now an item in my collection.) I began purchasing these patterns when I could find them in good condition, in a bust measurement fairly close to mine, and for a relatively low price (I'm talking under $30).
When the one above arrived in the office mail yesterday, I showed it off gleefully to my dear friend and coworker Ariel, even though she cares not a bit for sewing or patterns or fashion of any sort. She was a little impressed, though, when I boasted that it was from the 30's and in great condition. Then I admitted something like, "The sad thing is I'll probably never get around to making it." Her response? "Oh, so you've finally given up that pretense, eh?"
It's true; I suppose I've given up the ghost on this one. I have more patterns than I'll ever get around to making. And then just think of all the patterns I've yet to add to my collection and never make! It makes me a little sad, like when you realize you'll never be able to read every great book written before you die. Sorry, am I being morbid?
But there's also something comforting about collecting: having a niche item that you love and then tirelessly searching for it. I know it's just stuff, but these patterns truly feel like treasures to me.
What's your take on the matter? Do you consider yourself a collector of patterns?