How to Make an Inset Pocketcomments (10) September 16th, 2008
I love pockets. I wish everything I wore had them. So, since I am on a mission to convert my wardrobe to ONLY wearing clothes I've made myself, I am putting pockets into practically everything I sew! My favorite is the inset pocket because I love how it's integrated into the garment itself, as opposed to the patch pocket, which can sometimes seem like an afterthought.
An inset pocket can be placed anywhere along a seam, most often the side seam. It can also be placed so that it spans two intersecting seams, like a jeans pocket, which goes from the waist seam to the side seam. Adding inset pockets to any sewing pattern is a very easy process, and I'm going to walk you through it, so you'll never fumble for a place to put your hands, keys, or laundry quarters again!
This step (making the pocket) would be done just before the side seams are to be sewn, in whatever you are constructing.
1. Cut out the pieces. You'll need two extra pieces of the fabric you're using for the garment, each a little bigger than your desired pocket size. (Note: I will be describing how to make one pocket, but most likely you'll want to make two, so cut two of each piece.) Stack the two pieces on top of each other, and cut a straight edge along one side, which will be the side seam. Lay your hand down to use as a guide, and draw your pocket shape. Make it a little bigger than you think to allow for a 1/4-inch seam allowance, and also leave room for your garment's seam allowance at the side seam.
2. Make the pocket opening. Now separate the two pocket pieces, and lay one on the side seam of the garment body, where you want the pocket to sit. Draw the opening for your pocket, where you'll put your hand in. This should be a tad smaller than you want it, as the 1/4-inch seam allowance will make it bigger. Cut through the garment and pocket piece on the opening line.
You should now have three corresponding pieces: the garment with pocket opening (red), the pocket lining (pink), and the pocket facing (green). In my sample, I made them all different colors to clarify, but you'll probably make them all the same. Keep in mind that the facing will show when you're finished but the lining won't.
3. Sew the pocket lining to the garment. With right sides together, pin and stitch the lining piece to the garment, along the pocket opening line, with a 1/4-inch seam.
Flip the pocket lining to the wrong side of the garment, and edgestitch the opening if you want to.
4. Sew the pocket facing to the lining. With right sides together, pin and stitch the facing to the lining along the outer edge. I used a straight stitch first and then a zigzag over the edge to finish the raw edges together as well as to reinforce the pocket.
5. Sew the garment back to the garment front. Now you can seam your back and front garment pieces and finish the side seam.
And there it is! Now go find some stuff to put in your pocket, just because you can!