Based on the blade vibration theory of turbomachinery and the basic principle of blade timing systems, a sparse reconstruction model is derived for the tip timing signal under an arbitrary sensor circumferential placement distribution. The proposed approach uses the sparsity of the tip timing signal in the frequency domain. The application of compressive sensing in reconstructing the blade tip timing signal and monitoring multi-mode blade vibrations is explored. To improve the reconstruction effect, a number of numerical experiments are conducted to examine the effects of various factors on synchronous and non-synchronous signals. This enables the specific steps involved in the compressive sensing reconstruction of tip timing signals to be determined. The proposed method is then applied to the tip timing data of a 27-blade rotor. The results show that the method accurately identifies the multi-mode blade vibrations at different rotation speeds. The proposed method has the advantages of low dependence on prior information, insensitivity to environmental noise, and simultaneous identification of synchronous and non-synchronous signals. The experimental results validate the effectiveness of the proposed approach in engineering applications.