A couple of months ago, I did some research and wrote three blog posts highlighting free “regular” patterns that can be easily transformed into goth pieces (Free Goth-Them-Yourself Patterns Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3). As an intro to the series of posts, I referenced a few designers who create for the goth/alt sewists. These designers deserve a lot more recognition than a mere few lines on an introduction. They are the ones to have embraced the goth/alt aesthetic and design for our communities. BeMyGoth, George+Ginger, LegendSisters, and Slightly Sinister offer beautiful goth/alt sewing patterns for all levels, from beginner to advanced sewists.
This was the very first designer I found who created specifically for the goth community. Started by Parnuuna Kristiane, the brand is now managed by Sew4my3 on Etsy. BeMyGoth patterns excel in their details—frills that grow out of shoulder seams, a peter pan collar paired with exaggerated puffy sleeves, or contrasting fabric as a hip or elbow detail. The patterns have a romantic vibe, and they work well together as a collection.
The patterns range from easy pieces like the Lucinda Pencil Skirt and Madeleine Bird Top to more complex garments like the Florence Jacket. The patterns are not terribly size-inclusive, but if you fall within their range, lucky you! I’d love to sew the Florence Jacket or the Sibylle Skirt, but neither comes in my size—insert sad face here. Unfortunately, Parnuuna is no longer designing patterns, but you can find her as she seeks new paths on her new website, Feel Good Rebel.
The GOTH+GRUNGE collection is full of great pieces to grow your goth/alt wardrobe. You can purchase patterns individually, select the basic mini sets with four patterns each, or invest in the starter packs with six patterns each.
The patterns have fun names like the Teen Spirit Top and the Seether Skirt, and they range from beginner patterns like the Malibu Dress to more challenging ones like the Antechamber Coat—a glorious coat with a cropped inset and lots and lots of ruffles. The size range is very inclusive, and every pattern has a gallery of images with tons of inspiration.
The LegendSisters are Charlotte and Rachel. With their bridal business taking a forced break due to COVID, they decided to focus their energy on creating size-inclusive sewing patterns with the goth/alternative sewist in mind. They also sell beautiful black fabric (yay!) and sewing tools adorned with skulls. Take my money already!
So far, they have released two patterns: The Hazel Skirt and the Willow Dress (you can find PDF versions of the patterns at their Etsy store). The Willow Dress is an advanced beginner pattern. It has four options of sleeves (bishop, ¾, ruffles, or sleeveless), a gathered empire waistline, and two options of hemline, straight and asymmetrical. The Hazel Skirt is an advanced beginner/intermediate pattern for a high-waist skirt with two length options. You can sew the skirt on its own or add the pinafore straps. I already have visions of a full goth version of the Willow with bishop sleeves, asymmetrical hemline, and a row of skull buttons.
Sonja is the “self-proclaimed sewing nerd” behind Slightly Sinister Patterns, a place for “alternative patterns and sewing nerdy stuff.” If you are a goth/alt sewist with a need for practical clothing, Slightly Sinister is there for you. Each pattern has variations that go from a cleaner, more basic look to a more goth/alt version.
You can work your way through the four patterns and build a solid goth capsule wardrobe. The Mary Leggings offer a fun play of fabrics with the swirl option while the Alexis Wrap Skirt makes you wish you were part of a post-punk rock band. The patterns are only available as downloadable PDFs.
What Will You Sew?
So many delicious options, it is hard to figure out which one to sew first. I know I will be sewing the BeMyGoth’s Sibylle Skirt even if I have to grade it up. I absolutely need a bunch of LegendSisters Willows, everything from a simple version with a straight hem and ¾ sleeves to a goth-as-goth-can-be version with bishop sleeves and cascading hemline. I can definitely see many variations on the George+Ginger’s Seether Skirt, and the Slightly Sinister’s Mary Leggings will look amazing with some stretchy pleather I have saved for a special occasion.
I hope you can find one—one ten!—patterns from these designers to add to your sewing list. If you know of any other designers that create with a goth/alt aesthetic mind, please leave a comment with their name. I’d love to expand my sewing horizons.