Unlined patch pocket tutorial – how to make the perfect pocket

unlined patch pocket tutorialThis is the third tutorial in our pockets series.  We are going to be learning how to sew an unlined patch or “applied pockets” as they are professionally known.

As I have mentioned before, pockets are classified in three categories: inseam, slashed and applied pockets and of course, there are variations and combinations of them all so it can be confusing.  This series of tutorial is designed to help.

We have seen an example of a slashed pocket on the two previous tutorials.  Links are below.

The double welt pocket by the 5 lines method and the double welt pocket with a piped flapped by the butterfly method.

A patch pocket, as the name implies, is a separate piece of fabric that is applied to the right side of the fabric.  Done properly it will give your garment a look of professionalism and of course practicality. The patch pocket is also an excellent way to separate your design from the rest.  Have a look at the picture below for just a few examples of patch pockets variations.

unlined patch pocket tutorial

Where to use a patch pocket

The first or most common use, of course, would have to be on a man's shirt.  From the geeky looking dude to almost every office worker in the country, a man's shirt feels incomplete without a pocket on the shirt.  And, yet the patch pocket is only noticed when it is missing or when it is badly made.unlined patch pocket tutorial

The unlined patch pocket is also found on man's pajamas and aprons.  (Although I can understand the apron, I really do not get why men's pajamas have pockets..)unlined patch pocket tutorialOur preferred place for unlined patch pockets is, of course, the back of denim jeansunlined patch pocket tutorial

In this tutorial, I will be showing you the most basic of the applied pockets.  The following tutorial is for cotton fabric, linen, canvas and denim and a combination of them.  This type of pockets is not for loosely woven fabrics because the pocket will gape at the opening.

Download the free template

Download the free patch pocket template from over on our sister site at sewing4free.com.  While you're there, don't forget to sign up for the email list!

Print the pocket pattern using Adobe Reader on a Landscape setting.

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Download the Free Template

You can download the free template for this Patch Pocket tutorial from our sister site at sewing4free.com.

For help downloading and printing PDF patterns, please CLICK HERE.

Making a Patch Pocket with a template

The seam allowance for this template is 1/2″.  This seam allowance can change depending on the pattern, but the following instructions are the same for any shape patched pocket.

Trace the template on a piece of cardboard or thick paper.unlined patch pocket tutorial

Cut the pocket using the pattern.unlined patch pocket tutorial

Fold the top 1/4″ to the wrong side of the fabric and iron.  unlined patch pocket tutorial

Fold the top 3/8″ back to the right side of the fabric.unlined patch pocket tutorial

Sew the sides of the pocket at 1/2″.  Stop after the fold.  In this case and when using this pattern, I only have to stitch about 3/8″.unlined patch pocket tutorialFold the top back around and iron.unlined patch pocket tutorial

Working on the wrong side of the pocket, place the cardboard pattern inside the folded top.unlined patch pocket tutorialAnd using an iron fold the edges using the cardboard. unlined patch pocket tutorialRemove the cardboard and iron the front of the pocket.unlined patch pocket tutorial

We will make a double stitch on the top.   Sew the top of the pocket at 3/8″ from the edge.  Then again at 1/8.unlined patch pocket tutorial

There are two things you can decide to do now.  If you have a twin needle, you can sew the patch pocket straight to the garment you are making.   Or, sew around the pocket at 3/8″ and then sew the pocket to the garment. unlined patch pocket tutorial

As you can see, making an unlined patch pocket can be both simple and complicated.  Feel free to experiment with the design of the template for your different creations.

I hope you have found this short tutorial useful.  As always, I really welcome your questions and comments in the comment section below.  Until next time, Happy Sewing!

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3 Responses to Unlined patch pocket tutorial – how to make the perfect pocket

  1. Christine says:

    Thank you so much for the tutorial. I am busy making a simple velvet top and wanted to add a pocket… and then I received this email! Thank you, thank you!

  2. Yvette says:

    Thank you so much for this tutorial on patch pockets. I just made a denim skirt and wanted to add pockets, but I was a little unsure of how. Love all of your tutorials.
    Many thanks.

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