Yesterday we went over the inseam pocket option for our Opal pants and shorts, and today we are going to go over the other option – patch pockets! I’ll actually go over the front patch pockets, as well as the back pockets in this post. But if you choose to do inseam pockets instead for the front, feel free to skip this post and refer back to yesterday’s post instead!
You’ll notice our front patch pockets also have two lengths! Our normal length, but also a bonus deep pocket option, because hey – who doesn’t love wonderfully deep pockets!
// front patch pockets //
To start, attach fusible interfacing to the wrong side of the front pocket facings. You can cut out the fabric and interfacing separately before ironing them together, or you can try block fusing! It’s super simple, just cut a piece of interfacing roughly the size and shape of the two facings, and join it to the fabric before you cut them out! It makes it easier to cut out because the fabric is nice and stable, and it means you don’t have to fiddle about with lining the pieces up while ironing.
Turn under the longer outer edge of the facings by 3/8″ (1cm) and press.
Now time to place the front pocket facing on the patch pocket opening with right sides together.
Line up the raw edges, and pin in place. The straight, angled end of the facing points towards the top of the pocket, and the little corner at the other end should match up with the little corner on the pocket’s side seam edge.
Sew the facing to the pocket 1/4″ (6mm) from the raw edge.
Now you can press the facing and seam allowance away from the pocket. Don’t underestimate the importance of pressing! If you want that beautifully crisp pocket edge, it’s compulsory!
Understitch just under 1/8″ (3mm) from the seam on top of the facing and seam allowance.
Turn the facing in towards the wrong side of the pocket, enclosing the raw edge, and press well. Because we pressed the seam open earlier and did the row of understitching, your pocket opening edge should turn and fold beautifully. You’ll notice that the pocket front naturally curls over slightly to the back, and that’s exactly what we want! It makes the edge look clean and smooth from the front, and means the facing is nice and hidden. Alternatively though, you could sew your facing to the front of your pocket as an added design detail, even cutting it in a contrast fabric or with a different stripe direction to make it more of a feature!
Topstitch close to the edge, or hand sew along the folded edge, of the pocket facing to enclose the raw edges and finish the facing.
This is from the wrong side of the fabric…
And this is from the right side of the fabric.
Now turn in the bottom and side edge of the pocket by 5/8″ (1.5cm) and press well.
Repeat for the other pocket.
Now time to join them to your shorts! On your Front leg pieces, make sure you have transferred the markings for the patch pocket along the side seam and waistline.
Place the pocket on top of the leg front, with the right side of both pieces facing up. Line up the edges of the patch pocket with the notches on the front leg. The two remaining raw edges of the pocket should align with the top waist edge and side of the leg front. Just a note though, if you are sewing the patch pockets on the tapered leg version, the bottom corner of the pocket will have a small amount of overhang at the side seam. You can simply trim that away so the edge is aligned with the leg front and carry on as normal!
Pin the entire pocket in place.
Topstitch down the long edge of the pocket, pivoting at the corner, and along the bottom edge of the pocket, just under 1/8″ (3mm) from the edge.
Repeat for the other pocket, and they’re ready! Don’t they look amazing?!
// back pockets //
Turn under the top edge of your back patch pocket by 3/8″ (1cm) towards the wrong side of the fabric and press.
Turn under again, this time by 1″ (2.5cm), to enclose the raw edge. Press again.
Topstitch along the turned in edge just under 1/8″ (3mm) from the edge.
Now fold under the sides and bottom edges of the pocket by 5/8″ (1.5cm).
Transfer the markings for the back pocket placement onto the right side of your Back leg pieces. You can do this with pins and a fabric marker, tailors tacks, or your preferred method.
Place the pocket down on top of the Back leg with right sides facing outwards. Line up the pocket corners with the markings you made from the pocket placement guide. Pin in place along the sides and bottom edge.
Topstitch around the sides and bottom edge just under 1/8″ (3mm) from the edge, pivoting at the corners. If you’d like to reinforce the pocket, try pivoting when you reach the top corner and sewing a couple of stitches across the top edge, before pivoting again and sewing at an angle back towards the pocket edge. This little triangle will just add a little bit more strength to the join, helping it withstand the pressure that hands and phones and other things that go in back pockets create.
Repeat for the other pocket, and that’s all the pockets done!
// Looking for more Opal posts? //
- Inspiration and Ideas
- Tester Round-Up
- How to Lengthen Or Shorten the Pants
- Inseam Pockets
- Patch Pockets (back pockets and front patch pockets) (this post!)
- Seams (crotch seam, inseam, side seams)
- Belt Loops and Belt
- Waistband (B & D standard elastic waist)
- Paperbag Waistband (A & C)
- Bonus Hack – Cargo Side Pockets
- Bonus Hack – Drawstring Waistband
- Bonus Hack – Elastic Hem Joggers
- Opal Hack Ideas
Don’t have the Opal sewing pattern yet?! Order Opal today! We absolutely love seeing what you make, so don’t forget to tag your creations with #MNopal and @megannielsenpatterns when sharing on social media, and check out what everyone else is up to!