I used to work on a haberdashery stall down Roman Road market and we used to sell these by the bucket load! The big favourite was the US Dollar. Perfect for sewing on your jean jackets.
As mentioned in the article about Suede patchwork skirts, the use of patches was not only a fashion thing, it was also a way to keep costs down and continually rotate and renew old clothing. You would be watching Play School and see the female presenters looking like something out of a car crash. They would have patches all over their trousers, and sometimes their jackets. It didn’t look great then, and it looks even worse now.
The patches were also manufactured by some companies. Yes, you would go and buy this stuff. So the richer kids would buy the patches and have them sewn on, the poorer kids would be ripping up old clothes and making their own patches to try and join in.
Honestly, those who paid premium prices for patches were silly. Those of us without money looked just as good. But technology was getting on the act too. Soon the sewing on of patches was replaced by patches that you ironed into place. They did seem to work for a while, but the washing machine and the mangle always gave them a wicked work out to see if they stayed in situ.