in seam pockets tutorial

I love pockets. I really do. I like to put pockets anywhere I can as they are oh so handy for phones and oyster cards, but also very comfortable for hands!

This is a tutorial to help you with "in-seam" pockets - a pocket that is hidden... surprise, surprise... in a seam of your garment (normally the side seam). 

I love pockets

Adding pockets to a seam is a very quick and easy process (both pattern cutting the pockets and sewing them) and once you have a pattern you are happy with, you will be able to use it over and over again, with minimal changes.

For this tutorial you will need the pattern of the garment you are adding pockets to, as well as some basic pattern cutting equipment: a transparent ruler, a pacer (or pencil), some scissors and a small piece of pattern paper (just bigger than your hand).

To start, you will need to decided where you want to place your pockets. To do this, place my hands where I would like the pockets to be (on my body), and insert a pin on the garment I'm wearing just above my hand. I then take a tape measure and measure the distance between my underarm seam and the pin - that is where the pocket will start.

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Take this measurement and mark it on your pattern.

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With your hand planted on the pattern, draw around your hand in the rough shape of a pocket bag (have a look at the in-seam pockets of some of your own clothes if you're not sure about the shape). You don't want it to be too tight around your hand, so leave a little bit of space between your hand and the line you draw,

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Take a separate piece of pattern paper and trace the shape of the pocket (leaving enough space around it to add seam allowance). I like to use a a can of vegetable soup as a weight so that my pattern pieces don't move.

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And there you have the basic outline of your pocket piece.

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Add seam allowance to the curved section of the pocket bag (as it will already have seam allowance along the straight seam if you made the pattern from a pattern piece that already had seam allowance). Mark notches to indicate the seam allowance of the curved seam. Also use a notch to mark a balance point on the curved seam - this helps when sewing the front and back pocket bag together. Add cutting instructions - "Cut 2 pairs." 

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Transfer the notches from the pocket bag onto the seam of the garment.

When it comes to selecting a fabric for the pockets, you can use the same fabric as the main part of your garment for your pockets, or something lighter if you are using a heavy weight fabric (as you don't want to add too much extra bulk when adding pockets, especially as they tend to be around the hip area!)

What next?