Steely Seamstress

Sewing for life

Sewing the Seventies – Inspiration Part 1 Fabrics


Welcome to the first of my inspiration posts for Sewing The Seventies. I’ve had a long look at fabrics that can be bought on line (window shopping is great!) and here’s a selection of available fabrics that I think reflect the seventies aesthetic.

I’ve tried to show a wide selection including both wovens and knits, a range of prices and fabrics that would work for dresses, trousers, skirts and tops. I even tried to include fabrics from shops other than in the UK, but I’m not an expert on these, so forgive me if there aren’t too many in the suggestions below. My main aim was just to show that it is possible to find some seventies-looking fabrics out there and if you find some good alternatives out there, leave a comment below!

First of all here are the floral offerings. I think it really is the combinations of colours that mark these fabrics out for me; combinations of browns, mustards and purple that you don’t tend to see too often these days.


1. Cotton Poplin from Minerva Crafts

2. Cotton Jersey from Mood Fabrics

3. Lightweight cotton with Lycra from Mood Fabrics

4. Viscose crepe from Truro Fabrics

5. Cotton poplin from Tessuti Fabrics

6. Viscose Stretch Crepe from Stone Fabrics

I’m not sure all those geometric patterns are necessarily just applicable to the seventies. Number 6 below is definitely more a mod design and number 1 I’ve seen made up into a 1940s style dress, but make a jumpsuit out of it and it is pure seventies!


1. Linen and viscose from Fabric Godmother

2. Rayon from CentrePoint Fabrics

3. Cotton Jersey from Minerva Crafts

4. Silk Organza from Tessuti Fabrics

5. Silk Charmeuse from Britex Fabrics

6. Cotton poly blend jersey from Girl Charlee

Chevrons and Stripes

Chevrons and stripes were very popular in the 1970s. Really wish the photo above was in colour! There are lots of striped fabrics about and a whole selection of chevron knits at Girl Charlee. I particular like the Missoni fabrics (see number 3 below) – I just wish they weren’t so expensive.


1. Viscose Elastane Jersey from Stone Fabrics

2. Cotton Jersey from Fabric Godmother

3. Missoni Knit from Minerva Crafts

4. Cotton Elastane Rib from Stoff and Stil

Paisley fabrics are great for tunics and creating the boho looks of the early 1970s. My favourite is the Stof and Stil paisley (number 2) which is a border style print.

paisley1. Polyester Jersey from White Tree Fabrics

2. Woven cotton from Stoff and Stil

3. Silk cotton from Shaukat

4. Cotton Lawn from Truro Fabrics

70s Tartan

The following group show bottom-weight fabrics. Corduroy is a great choice for flares or dungaree dresses. Tartan was also popular in the seventies, why not go punk with Royal Stewart tartan (number 2).


1. Needlecord from Croft Mill

2. Wool polyester blend from Minerva Crafts

3. Wool tartan from Stone Fabrics

4. Jumbo corduroy from Plush Addict


Author: steelyseamstress

Sewing a new wardrobe

6 thoughts on “Sewing the Seventies – Inspiration Part 1 Fabrics

  1. The fabrics all have the 70s look. Not so keen on the tartan – I’m thinking Bay City Rollers.

  2. There is some rather spectacular inspiration within those fabrics. The florals with brown tones look particularly good to me! And I also wish that photo of the four girls in chevrons was in colour – surely it would be stunning!

    • Brown is such an underrated colour. I think you may have a similar colouring to me! I think browns are a good way for me to wear warm tones without looking like I’m suffering from a fever, which is what red or pink always does to me.

  3. Hey, thanks for the links to our shop 🙂 -great choices here! I’ve always veered for late 60’s/early seventies cuts which don’t always look very retro but as soon as you choose those retro fabrics and combine the colours you get the look.
    Bess (Stone Fabrics)

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