November 1st, 2013

On the bookshelf this week: Vintage Design Workshop

Share Button

NaKniSweMo – National Knit a Sweater Month is in full swing and it’s not too late to get started.

Geraldine Warner has put together a wonderful book that allows you to adapt vintage patterns into the perfect fit for modern-day style!

Vintage Design Workshop is divided into two sections, the first half teaches you how to update any vintage pattern to accommodate modern sizes and gives advice on choosing substitutes for yarns that are out of production. The second section demonstrates how to adapt modern patterns to create a vintage silhouette, teaching how to mix and match sleeves, necklines, or collars to the pattern of your choice to achieve a vintage look.

Leave a comment below and tell us if you’ve held onto a vintage pattern that you’d like to update and you could win a copy! All comments must be posted by 11:59pm EST on Tuesday, Nov. 5. Please make sure to leave us a way to contact you if you win! The winner will be drawn randomly and posted here the following day.

Edited, Wednesday November 6, 2013:

And our Winner is –  Michelle who said, “I’ve updated an already “updated” pattern from the 30’s with good results, but I’d love to have even more ideas. This book looks great.”

Congratulations Michelle! Keep an eye on your inbox, we’ll be contacting you soon.


Marketing Coordinator at WEBS - America's Yarn Store
Sara learned to knit and crochet as a child and added spinning and weaving to her skills after being hired at WEBS in 2007. While crochet is her #1 love, she is also very fond of her husband and 2 daughters.

Tags: , , , , ,

  • Charlotte W.

    *she’d love to

  • Charlotte W.

    My daughter is only 14 so she doesn’t have a vintage pattern she’d like to update but she was very much intrigued by the look of this book and she’s love to hold onto her own copy!

  • Sheila

    I don’t have any vintage patterns, but I love the look and would love to try adapting a modern pattern to a more vintage look.

  • Rachelle Crosbie

    I’ve got a booklet of vintage patterns from my Nana; would love to update them.

  • Colleen Graham

    I’ve been collecting vintage patterns, but haven’t tried one yet because of the conversion needed. This book is a dream come true!

  • Darth Grrrl

    I’ve bought several vintage patterns, and the size ranges are good for a hearty chuckle. I’d love to know how to update them.

  • Susan Knorr

    Oh, fun. I want to make a sweater for my daughter who volunteers in the vintage clothes department at her local museum.

  • Leanne

    I do not own any vintage patterns, but I love the look of vintage-styled clothing.

  • Kathi

    I have loads of vintage patterns and I have updated a couple of them, would love to do more!

  • Amy

    I collect vintage patterns and would love to be able to update them and even create new vintage designs.

  • mz

    I don’t have a vintage pattern to adapt, but I do like the puffy sleeves and have been wondering how to make them. I like the idea of adding vintage patterns to a modern design, that would be lovely. My Ravelry id is zmz945.

  • Beverly

    This looks awesome! I would love to try it.

  • Silvina

    I ve a few copies of Anna burda back from the 70’s and I d love to update them

  • Jeanne Bringley

    I have a bunch of patterns from the 40’s that belonged to my mom that I would love to convert.

  • Maryanne Cadwell

    I would love this book as I have many of my Mother-in-law’s vintage pattern books. I would love to use them as the styles are coming back.


    I have vintage pattern books that I have saved from favorite people in my life who have since passed away. Would really enjoy a new project updating some of the sweater patterns with this Vintage Design Workshop book.

  • Debbie S

    I would love to use the vintage patterns from the 40s/50s – what a great resource!

  • Caroline de Blieck Anderson

    I have all of my mom’s old patterns.

  • joy

    I have all the old ski sweater books. i also have the one for children, with the dancers around the bottom. Anyone remember that one? I think they are from the 40s-50s.

  • Cheryl

    yes I have a vintage Vogue Knitting Mag with some patterns that really are beautiful but need to be updated. Thanks so much for a chance of winning.
    PS. I subscribe to your blog via RSS with feeddeamon

  • Ginsey

    I wish I had those old pattern books from my aunt and grandmother–I love those looks! Beautiful.

  • Mary

    I have two hardbound books from WWII era that I would love to update. They have a lot of wonderful patterns in them.

  • kristen

    I love vintage anything. I have lots of vintage sewing patterns sadly no knitting patterns. I have a few crochet books from the 60’s :) lovely book , I love the sweater on the front cover

  • Anna C.

    I have several vintage things i’d love to update. I created an entire historic yarn craft database for a master’s class I took two years ago. I would LOVE this book!

  • Elizabeth Vindedahl

    I have several vintage patterns that ai have purchased off og eBay. It would be exciting to win this book.

  • Anne

    I have a hand-me-down old crochet book, but I’d love to knit something vintage looking, since I knit much more than I crochet.

  • Toby Adkins

    I love that sweater in the picture.

  • Janice

    Only started knitting a few years ago, but would love to try tackling one of these/

  • Jen D

    Well if you count 1970s as “vintage,” sure I have some. I would much
    rather knit something from the 40s or 50s. There are many great
    patterns on-line from those eras, but they are meant for teeny tiny

  • Cheryl Baker

    I love the sweater in this picture. I have some patterns from the 80’s but I’m not sure that is old enough to be considered vintage.

  • ellek

    Sadly, I do not have any vintage patterns, but I wish I did! Having that tie to my previous generations would be nice.

  • MyDaily Fiber

    Love it. Like they say, everything old is new again!

  • Amy Wake

    I have a Columbia Minerva pattern for a men’s belted sweater from the early 70s. I think that it would make a great sweater for a woman . . . Me!
    AmyWake on ravelry

  • Wendy Rottner

    I have a bunch of vintage patterns from baby to adult. Would love to update some of the “ski” sweater patterns for a modern fit!

  • GinaC

    Just inherited a box of stitchery magazines from 50’s and earlier…fragile, small print, but a joy to browse. Love items resembling Downton Abbey apparel.
    (rav: ginabina)

  • Michelle Gould

    I’ve updated an already “updated” pattern from the 30’s with good results, but I’d love to have even more ideas. This book looks great.

  • Malinda

    I have a vintage sweater book I inherited from my grandmother and I would LOVE to know how to update some of the patterns.

  • Zabbers

    I haven’t got one I’d like to update (too new a serious knitter myself), but I want to get that poodle wine bottle sweater because it’s legendary!

  • Patti Weeks

    I have some old patterns, but haven’t visited them in a long while. I’ll have to look through them again.

  • Shannon Curran-Trzepacz

    Have so many from my grandmother that I would love to finally be able to find something to do with! This book will have to make my Christmas wish list :)

  • LD Pugh

    i collect old knitting pattern booklets from flea markets etc. A book like this sounds great.

  • BarbaraG

    Time to dig out all the old patterns of my grandmother and mother. They never threw out anything that they might need — sometime.

  • Brenda Nash

    I have a bunch of old patterns that I need to update!

  • Sue

    I have some treasured patterns I saved from my grandmother, plus some great British knitting patterns from when I started knitting. I would love to know how to modify them, as the sizes – both clothes and yarn – since they were written!

  • PatT

    I am always looking for ways to make my projects a bit different from the others. And ‘vintage’ is what best describes both myself and my style.

  • Margie

    I, too, have some old pattern books with patterns I’d love to make look a little more up to date. This would be a wonderful resource to have. I can see my daughter and d-i-l in some of them now.

  • Tracy H

    I have tons of old patterns from my Mother and Grandmother, mainly sweaters and jackets that I would love to have updated.

  • Mimi Fan

    I have so many old pattern books (20+ years), a lot from Alice Starmore, classic elite etc. It would be great to change the shaping or add some accent details that would make them wearable in modern day.
    mimifan on rav