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Welt Pockets (Tip/Technique)
Viewed 5443 times
Review rated Helpful by 5 people   Very Helpful by 24 people   
Posted by: GorgeousFabrics
About GorgeousFabrics starstarstarstar
Member since: 8/12/02
Reviews written: 63
Sewing skills:Expert/Couture
Favored by: 255 people
tips added: 23
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Posted on: 9/10/03 8:11 PM
Last Updated: 2/23/07 11:28 AM
Web site/URL: photo
This is how I do welt pockets. I'm going to try to explain it clearly, but please let me know if anything is unclear and I will work on it. I adapted this technique from a seminar I once took with Bobbie Carr. I've been using this for years, and I figured this would be a good place to share it. I hope it helps someone. -Ann

Step 1: Interfacing
Prepare a length of fusible interfacing, 3 in. wide by the length of your welt plus 1 inch. Pink the edges of the interfacing so you don't get any press-through in your finished garment. Using a pencil or fine-tipped permanent marker, draw a line lengthwise down the middle of the interfacing. Using a see-through gridded ruler, draw two lines parallel to this line, a scant one-quarter away on either side. Draw two lines perpendicular to these lines at the end of the welt .The center line will be your cutting line. The outside lines will be your stitching lines. Fuse your marked interfacing to the wrong side of your fabric

Step 2: Organza
Prepare a scrap of silk organza the same size as your interfacing. Pin it to the right side of the garment directly over the interfacing.

Step 3: Sewing the opening
Start in the middle of one of the long stitching lines. Start off with a stitch length of 1.0mm (20 stitches/inch) for several stitches, then lengthen the stitches to 2.5mm (10 stitches/inch). As you approach the corners, drop the stitch length back to 1.0mm. Sew right up to the corner, then with the needle in the down position, pivot and sew along the short line to the next corner. Pivot again, increase the stitch length to 2.5 and sew to the next corner. Repeat, then sew until you are almost at the beginning of the stitching. Drop the stitch length to 1.0 and continue to stitch until you reach (but not pass) the beginning. Note that this will sew the interfacing, fabric and organza all together. Press on each side.

Step 4: Cutting the opening
Using Tailors Sharps scissors, or similar scissors with very precise points, cut along the cutting line through all thicknesses. Start at the middle and cut to about one-half inch from the edge. Then cut all the way to, but not through, the corners, forming a V. It is crucial that you use very fine-pointed scissors for this and be very precise in your cutting, or you will get a pinch at the corners.

Step 5: Turning the opening
Pull the organza to the wrong side of the fabric. This will encase the fabric in the organza. Pull the ends of the organza tightly and press press press!Turn the fabric over and press from the right side. This will leave you with a precise rectangular opening

Step 6: Welt strips
Cut two strips of fabric and interfacing, each 1 inch wide and the length of your opening plus 2 inches. Fuse the interfacing to the fabric. Fold the welt strips in half lengthwise and press. Center one strip in the welt opening and baste. Repeat for the second welt strip.

Step 7: Attaching welt strips
Open out one long side of the welt opening. From the wrong side, sew through all thicknesses (interfacing and garment fabric in the welt opening, organza and welt strip), as close to the existing stitching as possible (use the needle in the left-most position if you can). Do the same on the other side of the welt. This will attach the welt strips to the garment.

Step 8: Attaching pocket bag
Make the pocket bag by making a rectangle 10 inches long by the width of the welt opening plus 2 inches. Attach the pocket bag by lining up the right side of the pocket bags against the wrong side of the garment. Align the top edge with the edge of the welt opening. With the pocket bag against the feed dogs of your machine, stitch through all layers, close to the existing stitching. Turn the garment upside down and repeat on the bottom of the pocket. To close the sides of the pocket, fold the garment out of the way and sew across the triangles of the welts, as close to the edge of the welt opening as possible. Repeat on the other side.

Sew the lips of the welt together on the outside to retain shape until you press the garment..

I hope this all makes sense, and I hope it helps!
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16 Comments      Login to Add a Comment
kathi s said...
Hi, GS Great info- I am a little lost at Step 7. How do you handle the welt strips on the wrong side? I think that I need to try this out to completely understand it. My sewing skills are very rusty after a very long hiatus. Love your jacket! I have a piece of wool boucle which came from my mom's stash (she bought it in about 1959!) which is also royal blue and black, but not plaid. I might try a suit- I have about 5 yards. Thanks!
9/10/03 10:30 PM
Sew it seams said...
Thank you so much Ann, for taking the time to do this for all of us. I am really looking forward to trying this method on a boucle I have had in my stash for about 5 years. Your jacket is beautiful on you.
9/11/03 8:28 AM
iblondie said...
I'm taking a tailoring class at our local Jr college. When I used this technique on my pockets I got a "beautiful!" comment from the teacher! and she's really a taskmaster. Thank you!
9/28/03 10:52 AM
woody said...
Ann, I'll try this next jacket I make does it matter what colour organza is used or is the trick to be precise whith the stitching?
10/12/03 1:11 PM
Karla Kizer said...
Ann, I use this method, too, for welt pockets and for bound buttonholes. The only difference in our methods is in Step 6. I stack the prepared welt strips on top of each other, right sides together, and baste them together, stitching exactly down the center of the strips, parallel to the long edges. Then I fold the strips away from each other and press them. You now have 2 welt strips that meet each other exactly. I put strips of Steam-a-Seam along the long edges of the organza, close to the "window", center the welt strip unit in place and iron the basted welt strips in place before I stitch them. Once they are stitched in place, you can remove the basting so the pocket can open. Other than that, same method.
10/13/03 7:13 AM
woody said...
Ann I am just about to start another jacket for my self and will definetly try your method, before I start will you confirm to me if another fabric can be used for the backing other than organza or is this one of those vital ingredients that make it work?
10/23/03 8:31 AM
GorgeousFabrics said...
Woody, organza is what I use for a couple of reasons: it's very strong, so when you pull it through it won't tear. It's also very lightweight so it won't add any bulk to your garment. It's also available in many colors, so you can use one that will blend very easily with your garment fabric. Finally, it's not that expensive. if you buy 1/2 yard, you'll get a lot of welts out of that piece of organza. I hope this helps! -Ann
10/24/03 6:40 AM
woody said...
Ann, tried your tip for welt pockets this afternoon, brilliant it must be the easiest welt pocket I have ever done
10/26/03 1:44 PM
Andy Druian said...
Thank you for your info re the welt pockets - I will certainly try this method next - it sounds real good and hope its successfull - I will use this method for bound buttonholes too! Thanks!
3/16/04 4:31 AM
elka78k said...
I do welt pockets differently - I cut the opening only AFTER attaching the welt strips, makes it easier to handle those sharp corners.
2/22/05 6:26 PM
AnneM said...
Thanks for such a detailed coverage of welt pockets. I haven't tried them yet, but am saving this info for when the time comes!
7/3/05 6:29 PM
99 said...
This was a very outstanding review of how to make a welt pocket.
4/6/06 3:27 PM
johojo said...
Her clearly explained tip helps resolve several puzzles posed by the scant instructions of a vest pattern this beginner is attempting to sew.
3/15/09 1:14 AM
aripper said...
I think it is helpful but if it had step by step pictures it would make it much easier to understand.
5/26/11 4:26 PM
maypearl said...
Excellent technique! This is way easier than my usual method.
6/26/11 10:55 PM
slmstyle said...
Hi Ann! I know it's been almost 10 years since you wrote this, but I figured the technique is classic and still works and I'd still post a comment. First of all, thanks for your great tutorial on making a welt pocket. I plan to add this to the back of Butterick 5682 trouser jean pattern. Questions for you: On step 6, when you center the welt strip over the opening and baste, this is basting on the wrong side, correct? How far away from the edges do you baste, and I'll assume the raw edges of the strip are away from the welt opening. Step 7, when you open out the welt opening and sew through all the thicknesses, this is a little confusing. It would be great to have photos to go along with each step. I'll give it a try on scraps anyway before I add it to the back of my jeans. Thanks! -Stephanie
4/3/12 1:57 AM

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