Directions for Bound Pocket Sewing

Written by cynthia myers
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Directions for Bound Pocket Sewing
Learn to sew a bound pocket. (machine sewing stripy fabric image by David Winwood from

A bound pocket is a sleek, low profile pocket perfect for a blazer or tailored jacket, or a pair of dress slacks. Only the opening of the pocket is visible on the outside of the garment. These pockets are also known as buttonhole pockets, since the opening resembles an oversized buttonhole. You can make bound pockets with fabric that matches your garment for an understated look, or choose contrasting fabric for a designer touch.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Dressmaker's chalk
  • Fusible interfacing
  • Iron
  • Fabric for pocket and pocket welts
  • Scissors
  • Straight pins

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  1. 1

    Mark the location of the pocket on the right side of the fabric with dressmaker's chalk. Draw a line the length of the pocket in the appropriate place on the garment.

  2. 2

    Cut a piece of interfacing two inches longer than the width of the pocket and two inches wide and iron onto the wrong side of the garment, directly behind the marked area.

  3. 3

    Cut two pieces of fabric that match or contrast with your garment, plus two pieces of interfacing, to form the welts that will show on the outside of the pocket. These pieces should measure two inches longer than the width of the pocket and one inch wide.

  4. 4

    Iron the interfacing pieces onto the wrong side of each welt piece.

  5. 5

    Fold each welt piece with the wrong side of the fabric and the interfacing to the inside. Match up the long edges and sew a narrow seam along this edge. Sew as close to the edge as you can while still catching all the fabric.

  6. 6

    Lay the welts on top of your garment, on the outside, with the raw edges of each welt piece meeting on the line you drew to mark your pocket. Pin in place with a straight pin.

  7. 7

    Sew a line down the centre of each welt. Work slowly and keep the line as straight as possible. Backstitch at each end to secure your stitching.

  8. 8

    Cut through the garment fabric along the original line you drew to mark the pocket, between the two welts you just sewn. Stop cutting ½ inch short of each end. Using the tips of your scissors, snip two diagonal cuts at the end of the straight cut, so that you're left with a straight line of cutting flanked by little triangular flaps.

  9. 9

    Turn the welts to the wrong side of your garment, through the opening you just cut. Press with the iron.

  10. 10

    Fold the fabric on one side of the pocket over at the very edge of the pocket. You should see one of the little triangles you cut resting on top of the two welts. Sew a line straight down the triangle, through the welts and as close to the garment as possible without sewing the garment itself. Repeat this on the other side of the pocket.

  11. 11

    Cut a piece of fabric the width of your pocket and twice as long as the desired width of your pocket. This will be the actual pocket, on the inside of the garment.

  12. 12

    Fold the pocket with the wrong side of the fabric to the inside, the short edges of the fabric meeting. Press.

  13. 13

    Unfold the pocket and pin one short edge of the pocket to the bottom welt, the right side of the pocket fabric facing you. Match the raw edges of welt and pocket and sew a narrow seam.

  14. 14

    Match up the edges of the top welt and the other half of your pocket and sew another narrow seam.

  15. 15

    Bring the two halves of the pocket fabric together and sew the side seams. Trim away any excess fabric, leaving a scant ¼ inch outside the seam line. Press.

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