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Tips & Techniques > Quick and easy zippered pocket in a bag lining

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Posted by: Deepika
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About Deepika starstarstarstar
MA United States
Member since: 11/28/01
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Posted on: 5/15/05 3:26 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 1 people   Very Helpful by 19 people   
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More and more people are making handbags now everyone loves pockets and zippered pockets are even more practical especially if the bag itself doesnt have a zipper closure. Here's my take on a super quick zippered pocket with exposed zipper. It's sort of like sewing a zipper in a "window". I'll explain in a second. But first, I have to say that I did take all photos of each and every step, but deleted some of them before uploading to my computer. I will try to explain and hope this makes sense. The step numbers are clickable to photos if there are any.

Step 1: Depending on your bag size, figure out how big you want your pocket size to be. Cut one pocket piece of that size plus the seam allowances.

Step 2: Now cut a facing piece from the same fabric with the same width as the piece you cut out in step 1 and about 1.5 - 2 inches long. Now, on the wrong side of that piece, draw a rectangle which is 1/2" wide and slightly smaller than the facing width. Draw a horizontal line in the center of the rectangle. This will be your cutting line.

Step 3: Place the Facing piece right side down, on your lining where your want the zipper to be. Mine is about 2 inches from the raw edge. The piece should be centered horizontally. Now topstitch around the rectangle you marked in step 2. With a sharp scissors, cut on the horizontal line you marked leaving 1/4" on both sides of the box. At the end, make small diagonal snips to the four inside corners of the box. Now you have a cutting line which looks like this


Step 4: Through the cut now, fold the facing piece to the inside so you have an open window if you look from the right side of the lining. Give it a good press. You can click on the step number to see a photo.

Now comes the easy part - INSTALLING The Zipper :)


Step 5: Place your zipper under the window so the teeth are centered in the window. Pin and topstitch with the zipper foot, making sure that the zipper pull is within the window and not outside (you wont be able to zip it open otherwise!).

Step 6: Now all you have to do is pin the pocket piece you cut out in step 1 on the backside of the lining/zipper assembly and topstitch it.

Here's what it looks like

Hope this helps. I found this method very easy even though from the tip, it seems there are a lot of steps. If you are going to add pockets, spend the extra few minutes and make it a zippered pocket instead!

I used this in the bag I recently made for my mom.

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CarolynGM said... (6/13/07 7:38 PM) Reply
Great tip. I'm making my first bag, and it's nice to find a tip that so clearly lays out the steps for adding a zippered pocket.
MindyHuffman said... (5/23/07 11:36 PM) Reply
Hi, Deepika, LOVE that bag!! Did you use a pattern for it? I just bought everything I need to make a bag like that, but I don't have a pattern. GREAT JOB!! And thanks so much for the tip on the zippered pocket. I'm definitely going to try that. Mindy
OP Gal said... (4/25/07 9:29 AM) Reply
Great tip. I haven't done this but have wondered just how it's done. The facing piece thing makes it look very professional. Thanks.
BJ1400 said... (1/6/07 8:55 PM) Reply
I recently used this tip for a purse pocket. Worked great!
SouthernStitch said... (9/29/06 9:45 AM) Reply
Deepika you must now get the handbag wall clock from HotPatterns cafe website. It's so you! This is adorable.
Satya said... (5/20/05 9:40 AM) Reply
deepika, Your step by step instructions are really great and very useful. It will make stiching a bag possible , which otherwise was looking very very difficult to me. I will definatly try a bag ( though much simpler) with a zip inside. Do keep on giving guidence like this at least for people like me l.The bag has come out really pretty
SouthernStitch said... (5/16/05 12:57 PM) Reply
Oh what a cute bag! Thanks for this tip. I've printed it and am going to use this soon!
Deepika said... (5/16/05 9:35 AM) Reply
Janie, what a great idea! I'll have to try that next time using a solid fabric for facing.
Janie Viers said... (5/16/05 8:41 AM) Reply
Genius, thy name is Deepka! After all the years of sewing it took YOU to remind me of this technique!!! THanks, I had forgotten all about facing openings when brainstorming for bags (or even for pockets on apparel) I bet if you did it and let some of the opening lining show it would look like you piped the zipper opening!
SewVeryTall said... (5/16/05 2:18 AM) Reply
This method is like the first half of a bound buttonhole, and my favorite way to do a zippered pocket in a purse. Great idea to post it here for others, who might not have thought of it yet.
PVA said... (5/15/05 7:08 PM) Reply
This is a very neat method, Deepika, thanks for adding this tip. I love the fabrics you used for this bag!
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