We all love to sew quick and easy things; in this way, we sew more and share more of what we sew with the loved ones.
But sometimes you choose another path: you choose to make it better instead of making it faster. I just did this last week and I can’t describe the amazing feeling that I had once the project was finished. I was so proud that I allowed myself to spend more time doing a better job!
My project involved pockets on the lining of a simple shopping bag I made for one of my sisters. I used an incredibly beautiful fabric by Hoffman, one of my patterns and I thought that this beautiful bag and my sister deserve a zippered pocket.
Do you know what is a welt pocket? It is usually stitched on jackets and pants, it is a very beautiful accent. There are many ways to sew this type of pocket, and some of them are quite complicated! But there is a simple way, too, and 95% of what it requires you may already know! Isn’t that great?
Here is what you need and also the size of my pieces:
– piece of fabric where the pocket will be placed (lining of bag -13” x 13”)
– pocket panel (lining of the pocket): 10” x 18”
The width of this piece must be about 3” wider than the pocket opening ( 7” in this example).
For the length – double the desired depth of your pocket and add 2” to this size.
Fuse interfacing to the back of both pieces (I used a lightweight, woven interfacing).
On the back of the pocket panel, draw a rectangle as shown below. Use a permanent pen.
Place the pocket panel on the lining panel, as shown – centered and at 1 1/2” from the top edge (it could be 2” as well).
Keep the pieces together with pins.
Sew on the outside rectangle.
Cut down on the inside lines. Make sure you finish those diagonal cuts exactly at the corners (see the red arrow) – this is so important! Otherwise, you will encounter puckers in the next step.
Pull the pocket fabric through the hole you just cut to the wrong side of the main panel.
Press the seams open.
Flatten the fabric on the back so you have a nice and flat opening.
All these are the steps you follow when you sew a regular, zippered pocket, so until now, probably there is nothing new to you?
If you want to make a double welt pocket, mark the center of the opening on the left and right edges of the pocket, as shown below.
Fold down the upper section of the pocket as shown below, so it covers half of the opening. The fold must meet the previous markings.
Here is how it looks like on the right side. If everything looks OK, press the fold well on the back side.
In the same way, fold up the lower section of the pocket so it covers the other half of the opening.
This is a double welt pocket.
If you make a single welt pocket, keep the upper section of the pocket intact and fold up the lower section so it covers the entire opening.
Keep the seam allowances open.
Use pins to keeping everything safely in place and press well.
Topstitch all around the opening as shown below, close to the seam line – with a matching thread!
Here is how it looks like on the back side.
Close the pocket lining; fold it in half, aligning the top and bottom edges and the left and right edges.
Sew at 3/8” from the edges, as shown below.
Because we don’t need access to the top section of the pocket and to avoid that unaesthetic opening (see the yellow arrow)…
… secure the top of the opening by topstitching through all the layers, as shown below (on top of the previous stitching).
Single welt pocket done!
Here is a double welt pocket, secured with stitch-in-the-ditch seams.
View from the back.
I added even a zipper; I used pins to keep it in place but if you find it difficult, baste the zipper in place with thread. Stitch-in-the-ditch again to secure the zipper in place. Use matching thread.
I stitched these welt pockets inside my bag, but you can sew them on the outside bag, as well; it will add a nice finishing touch to any bag.
I hope you will give this technique a try! It is so worth the little extra time needed!
DOWNLOAD this tutorial in pdf form – IT’S FREE!
I quilted my fabric on Bosal In-R-Form foam- my new favorite replacement for batting when I sew quilted bags.
I need to sew more bags like this!
The pattern is my Simply Chic bag pattern, reduced at about 90%.
Want to add such pockets to your own bags?
If you need inspiration for new projects, check out my bag patterns here.
If you find this tutorial helpful, PIN it for later review.