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Pocket reinforcement
Trying to make patch pockets on woven suiting fabric
shermarama
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shermarama
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Date: 7/7/12 12:01 PM

This morning I picked up some smashing wool suiting - it's a sort of combination pinstripe and herringbone pattern in brown - but to mix things up I'm planning to make some combat-style long shorts out of it. Bellows pockets with buttoned flaps on the legs, patch pockets front and back. The only thing I'm concerned about is how to handle the differences between this fabric and what I'd normally make combat-style trousers out of.

The suiting is woven wool with a bit of elastane in it, so it's a bit stretchy generally, especially on the diagonal. Normally if making trousers out of this sort of fabric I'd make welt pockets on the back and bag pockets on the front, so the stuff in the pockets is in the bag and the main line of the fabric sort of skims over the top of it. When making patch pockets on combats or similar, they're usually of something a little stiffer, so the single layer on top doesn't get pushed out of shape by the pocket's contents. I'm just a bit concerned that with the suiting, the pockets will stretch instead and so I'll get obvious bulges around my phone and wallet and the like.

I'd like to keep up the contrast between the informal trouser style and the formal fabric, rather than just making bag pockets, so I wondered whether interfacing on the front and back patches would help? Or could it make those parts too stiff? It doesn't feel like it would work in the long-term either, but then I don't have that much experience using interfacing. The other option I thought of was lining the pocket patches with the sort of stuff I'd normally use to make the pocket bags - would that add a bit of reinforcement without making things stiff? I also want to avoid a situation where I sit down and the fixed back pocket is pulling the rest of the fabric around... Has anyone got any experience doing something like this? Or am I finding problems where there might not be any anyway?

Karla Kizer
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Date: 7/7/12 12:28 PM

I've made patch pockets with flaps in knits and stretch wovens, using tricot interfacing. It reduces the stretch of the pocket, without eliminating it completely.

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dscheidt

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Date: 7/7/12 1:34 PM

A properly applied fusible should last the life of the garment. I'd probably line them, so that the interfacing wasn't visible or feelable.

If you're making the sort of pockets found one combat pants, with bellows, it's probably possible to do some reinforcement of the edges, so the whole pocket keeps its shape.

shermarama
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shermarama
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In reply to Karla Kizer <<


Date: 7/7/12 2:33 PM

Thanks, Karla, I didn't know stretch interfacing existed but it sounds like it could be really useful. Now to work out what on earth it might be called in Dutch...

shermarama
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In reply to dscheidt <<


Date: 7/7/12 2:35 PM

That's a good point - I don't question the life of interfacing in a waistband. I might do some experiments and see what happens. Thanks!

shermarama
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shermarama
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Date: 8/1/12 4:41 PM

Just in case anyone's still watching, I finished these shorts and am really happy with them. Having made a couple of test pockets for comparison, I used interfacing on the front patch pockets, and only lining on the back and leg pockets, and they've turned out just how I wanted.

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