This is the same vest pattern that I made before but I wanted to do a tutorial on how I added the pockets. This will be a single welt made out of a single piece of fabric. Unfortunately, I did this at night and so the pictures aren’t the best but hopefully they will make sense. These pockets were very intimidating to me but after the first few times they’re really pretty easy.
Starting on the right side of the fabric trace out the shape of the pocket you want. I made my pockets three inches long and half an inch tall.
You can barely see my blue outline but it’s there!
View from the right and wrong side of the fabric.
With a piece of thread you’re going to sew from corner to corner, along the short side of your rectangle, without tying the thread off. This is just to transfer the markings you made to the back of the fabric where we will be sewing next.
Math time. The actual pocket bag and welt flap are all one piece of fabric for this tutorial. It is essentially a four by nine rectangle. If you’re making pockets the same size as mine feel free to stop here and just cut that out, we’ll get to what to do with it in a minute. But to get that number I added half an inch on either side of the pocket lengthwise (so 3″+.5″+.5″ =4″), then one inch to the top, one inch for the welt, and the remaining seven inches are arbitrary. To me anyways, I’m sure there is a more professional way to do this but that’s not my style! Basically, the rectangle is eventually folded in half to create the pocket, those top two inches are necessary to form the welt but the bottom inches of the rectangle are just how long you want the pocket to be.
Now that you have the rectangle, you’re going to position it on the right side of the fabric. I line up the top edge 1 inch from the top of the pocket outline and then center it so that the extra on the sides are evenly dispersed. Pin this on whichever side of the fabric makes sense to you, I did the right side but we’ll be sewing on the wrong side.
I’m using fleece so It’s hard to tell but you want the right sides of both the pocket and bodice to be touching. So if you were making the welt out of a patterned fabric the pattern would be facing down in this step.
Finally time to sew something! On the wrong side of the fabric you are going to sew two straight and parallel lines connecting the thread that you put in earlier. I went ahead and drew a line to follow but its not necessary if you’re a pretty straight sewer. Those extra threads you put in earlier are no longer necessary so go ahead and pull them out.
Crappy picture of what the front will look like.
Ok, now we have to cut the fabric. I put this off for a while and puttered around the kitchen, made a cup of coffee and generally procrastinated. But I promise its not that scary. It’s going to look kind of like this: >—< (fancy graphics!)
Cut one slit in the middle of the fabric, stopping about 1/4 of an inch from the ends. Angling towards your sewn lines cut two small slits coming off the main cut you just made as close as you can get to the seam without cutting through it. Now push your rectangle of fabric through the hole you just made to the wrong side of the fabric and if you’re feeling particularly efficient go ahead and press it flat. I didn’t.
I think these next steps are a little hard to explain with text so I tried to take a lot of pictures to show what I mean but I’d be happy to explain further if necessary. On the back side of the fabric you’re going to take the rectangle and fold it up then down to form the welt.
This is the final shape of the welt from the wrong side. You’re going for a sort of ‘S’ shaped fold.
Pin it from the front and then sew a line all along the perimeter of the opening from the right side of the fabric. What you just sewed should now be keeping the shape of the welt when you remove the pins so you’re almost done!
I’ve sewn an extra line of zigzags here on either side of the pocket edges just to reinforce the seam since that is where the most stress will be on the fabric.
Now all thats left is to fold the bottom half of your rectangle up to meet the top edge and sew it shut!
Sew along where the white lines are to connect the pocket. I forgot to take a picture of it.
Voilà, welt pockets!