How To Add Pockets To Anything! | The Style Pile Episode #3

How To Add Pockets To Anything! | The Style Pile Episode #3

There is a box, in the corner of my sewing
room. It is a box whose contents have not seen the
light of day for many a month. Many crafters will be familiar with this box,
in all of its forms: There’s the ever-growing amorphous lump
that lies underneath your desk… The monster underneath your bed…
The stuff you vacuum-packed in a fit of organization and stuffed into your garage in the hopes
that you’d never have to deal with it again… This, my friends, is the UNFINISHED SEWING
PILE. The item that I pulled out of the box for
today’s episode is this thrifted dress. Now it’s a pretty nice simple floral dress
with a gathered skirt… but it really annoys me that more of my clothes don’t have POCKETS.
I’ve decided that I need more pockets in my life. So, I’m going to add some.
Now, you can do this to any item of clothing that has side seams – dresses, skirts, pants,
jackets – basically anything that has a seam that you can rip open. To make a pattern for my pocket, I grabbed
a piece of paper with a straight edge, and then I put my hand flat on it, and then angled
my hand slightly downwards like this. Then, I traced around the shape of my hand,
with roughly 1 inch extra all the way around, turning it into a pocket shape that looks
like this. And then I cut my pattern out. The fabric that I’m using for my pocket
is this thrifted cotton pillow case. The pillow case fabric is already in two layers, but
if you’re just using a regular piece of fabric then fold it over before this next
step. I put my pocket pattern on top of the fabric,
traced around it, repeated this, and then cut them out. Now if you remember, I was cutting
through 2 layers of fabric here, so this gave me 4 pocket pieces in total and I will use
2 symmetrical pieces for each pocket. Back to my dress, I tried it on and then I
figured out roughly where I wanted the pockets to sit. Then, I turned the dress inside out,
lined up the pocket pattern with the seam, and then I made 2 marks, using chalk, at the
top and bottom of the pocket, on the dress material. Then, I ripped open the seam in-between the
chalk lines. I used some small, sharp scissors and a seam ripper to help me out here, and
I actually opened up the seam to one inch above and below the chalk lines. Then – and watch carefully because this
is a little bit tricky – when I sew it on, my pocket is going to end up facing in a downwards
direction like this. So, I line up the straight edge of the pocket with the open seam, right
side of the fabric facing down, and then, on the dress at the open seam, I fold back
the top layer like this. Then I carefully place the pocket material on top, right-sides-together
with this folded-back dress fabric – and then I insert pins to keep it in place.
That was a little bit confusing, so this is what it looks like from the other side, once
it’s all pinned together. And then, I sew this piece of the pocket to
the dress like this. I just use a basic straight stitch and I sew
the pieces together about 1 quarter of an inch away from the edges. On the other side of the open seam, I’m
going to do the exact same thing to attach the other half of the pocket.
So, I line up the pocket, fold back the dress material at the seam, pin, and then sew the
pocket to this side of the dress using a straight stitch. And once both the pocket flaps are sewn on,
I place them right-sides together. With the dress still inside out, I sew the seam back
together where it’s been opened above and below the pocket material, and also all the
way around the pocket like this. It’s also a good idea to pin everything
in place to hold it together while you sew! Again, I’m using a basic straight stitch.
When I was done I turned my dress the right way around, and I admired this cute new little
pocket! I then gave the pocket a good iron and then
I repeated the exact same thing on the other side to end up with two pockets, and I’m
done! And this is how it looks!
The addition of pockets to this dress makes it about twice as interesting, and also infinitely
more useful because this dress can hold things! I also like how the pockets are hidden – they’re
really subtle and you can’t really see them – but when you do, BAM, they’re super cute
and polka-dotty! So, now that I know how easy it is to add
pockets to an item of clothing, I’m going to go ahead and add pockets to every pocketless
item that I own. Thanks for watching, and I’ll see you all later! Bye!

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About the Author: John Markowski


  1. I have this skirt that I have wanted to add pockets to for the longest time, but I was scared to go about so thank you for this video.

  2. brb gonna go do this to all my dresses? but that's literally the cutest dress I've ever seen I know you said it was thrifted but do you know the brand? OR IF YOU COULD RECREATE IT THAT WOULD BE AMAZING I love you and your videos!!❤

  3. POCKETS!!!!!!!

    I felt the need to shout that…because having pockets in a dress is amazing…now all I need to do is learn how to use a sewing machine.

  4. man I really admire your work woman thanks for showing me your guided instructions to sewing in pockets to pocketless garments I applaud you for that ??????????? I look forward to seeing more sewing projects like these.

  5. I have a pair of Pants wich i like a lot and would be my favourite… if it didnt have FAKE POCKETS !! why!
    now i will add pockets to them and will use them everyday until i die !! 😀

  6. I'm gonna try this on a pleated skirt making two holes under the pleats. I'm probably gonna ruin it but gosh I wanna take that risk, my school uniform doesn't have pockets and this would be so useful.

  7. More tips for people who are not used to sew/dont have lots of experience (like me):
    Look that your pockets are big enough, more is better (my hands dont fit)
    If you do pants, look where the pockets are on pants that already have pockets or you will sew them too low down (they are so far away)
    Really, really look closely how she sews them one or the seams will get outside (nothing tragic but it doesnt look pretty)
    It is a good instruction how to do it, so I hope you can avoid some mistakes that I made with these additions 🙂

  8. I'm so glad I found this tutorial! Everything I was finding on how to sew pockets was how to sew them into a pair of pants you're making, not anything that was already made. Love your channel!

  9. Thanks for this video! I was wondering if it would be okay to simply cut the fabric if there are no seams to rip, or would this ruin the dress somehow? If anyone can answer this question I'd greatly appreciate it!! 🙂

  10. Thank you so much! We can finally combat the sexism in the fashion industry by adding pockets to our own clothes! I was wondering, would this work on more stretchy, thin material like leggings.

  11. Excellent! I've been wanting to put pockets in so many of my favorite dresses and skirts. I'm told it's rather easy, and this lesson totally makes it accessible. So thank you! I was wondering about adding pockets to a skirt without side seams, such as the "circle skirt" or the "circle square skirt" (which I made, loved and am making one for my 6 year old cousins). Can it be done? Or is there more issues similar to "cutting on the bias" enigma?

    Also, I would love to understand sleeves and shoulders a bit better. I recently found a great chart of different sleeves, such as "Juliet" to "Leafs" to "Raglan".

  12. You are a f*cking legend. My favorite pants have four vanity zips and the only REAL pockets are in the back! You know, for *SS GRABBING. women's fashion man, women's fashion.

  13. This was super helpful! And so easy to execute. I added pockets to two of my dresses. I stitched both by hand as I don't have a sewing machine; one was like the one in your video and it turned out perfect. but the other one was a straight cut dress, so after sewing on the pockets when I tried on the dress, I noticed that the pocket hole and the material inside is visible from the sides. So it's looking a bit off. any ideas how I can fix it? would love to hear your thoughts. Thanks!

  14. About to add pockets to my all my jeans with 1inch useless pockets! And honestly everything, I want to add pockets to everything I own now

  15. i used this tutorial to add pockets to my uniform skirts and now my phone won't have to be in my waistband all the time (which is good because it always slips and falls on the ground and that's super annoying lol) thanks for this really helpful, simple video!!

  16. I'm super grateful for this tutorial. My mom recently bought me a pair of super comfy sweat pants that have no pockets, and I just can't live in a world where my super fashionable and comfortable sweats don't have a place for my hands or wallet.

  17. Wow this was a clear video that makes me hope I can add pockets to some shorts I have! I don't have a sewing machine though, would hand sewn be secure enough? :/

  18. Don't you need to do something to the edges to stop fraying? Or isn't it woven fabric? Or am I wrong. 😐 I'm worried about my new pockets fraying.

  19. Tip: As well as measuring around your hand, also MEASURE AROUND YOUR PHONE/wallet/thing you're planning to store in your pockets. I didn't and just used my hand as a guide and annoyingly while my phone fits inside the pocket, it's less safe than had I made the pocket deeper.

  20. doesn't have a sewing machine. doesn't sew Yeah I'm definitely going to do this anyway, in a crappier way, but I want my pockets so why the heck not 😀

  21. Any idea how to add pockets to something that doesn't have seems (or if the seems are in the wrong place?)
    I turned one of my long sleeved shirts into a jacket for work so it's easier to take off if I get warm from running around too much. Only thing that could make it better is if it had pockets though. And if the pocket is on the inside, people won't be able to see when I mess up XD

  22. my gf got me a shirt that was too big but it's thick enough that i think i can just use it as a jacket. I have no idea how to sew but im gonna try to add some pockets to it too.

    Wish me luck ?

  23. Ive binge watched your videos and have great respect for your love of pocket lol. This is my favorite so far. Youre awesome!!!!!!!

  24. You know, i‘ve been watching your videos for super long although i canmt actually sew. Your videos have helped me in the long run for tiny projects where i needed to (in most cases) sew or fix something 🙂 today our neighbor gifted us his old cat tree for our kitties. I spent about 45 mimutes sewing and fixing the loose faux fur that came off in some places and in the end it looked suprisingly clean 🙂 i know it‘s not alot but i‘m so proud of myself and i wanna do alot more projects now!!

  25. Thank you so much for this vid! I just added pockets to a dress and it was so easy with your help! You're the best 🙂

  26. This is AMAZING and so easy. Who knew! I always want little DIY things to do on the weekends and ways to get back into sewing. I will be adding pockets to EVERYTHING! Thanks for this video

  27. Why do dress makers insist of denying us our basic needs, pockets are a must! This is such a great video, since my room mate and I are always complaining about not having pockets. I will try this 🙂

  28. I got here from a doctor who vid Donna you know what I have pockets ( where she kept saying she in a wedding dress so she doesn’t have pockets) happy to say I liked this video could help with pocketless shorts I own.

  29. I do not know if this is a coincidence, but I just found this amazing fabric print that I have been hunting for months. I was just thinking of making a skirt with pockets, but I knew nothing of how to insert pockets. I happened to find this at exactly the right time and will definitely be using it. ?

  30. You know there was a time when they had pockets on a belt that you would wear under your dress and the dress just had holes around wear the pockets would be im not really sure why they did this though so if anyone could let me know that would be great

  31. I am SO thankful that you posted a video on adding pockets to already made clothing. I've been looking for this and mostly I found ones where you're gonna make a skirt from scratch. I'm just concerned of breaking the whole side seam when cutting them.

  32. BEST TUTORIAL EVER!!!!! Now i can add pockets to all my skirts and people won't look at me weird for putting my hands in my pockets on accident and forgetting I don't have pockets.

  33. My wife just asked me to put pockets into a jean jacket which has flaps on it that make it LOOK like it has pockets. Any tips on what I should do considering it is denim?

  34. You have made it so simple, I have been freaking out over a pocket I am supposed to add to a dress, now am heading right to my sewing machine to make the pocket. Thank you..???

  35. I have a chemise for a costume and adding pockets will allow me to NOT need a purse, which will take away from the costume! Thank you!

  36. I'm too depressed to do this but I wanna do this to every piece of clothing I own! i keep digging trough my bag to find my phone it's so annoying!

  37. i literally just finished doing this to my favorite pair of pants (i was super slow and careful because i’m not very experienced with my machine and because i would never forgive myself if i had ruined them skdjskfj) and it worked extremely well!!!! i topstitched the edges of the openings so that they would be more flat and the whole thing took 1h30 tops! now i would literally die for this pair of pants and i would die for annika too, ty for this tutorial :)) now i gotta go ahead and do this to every piece of clothing i own

  38. Fyi peeps, if you want a pocket to put things in, stretch your hand out and then outline it (my first attempt at my pocket was too small because it only fit my hand closed up)

  39. Protest! Every time I buy women's clothes I sew in bigger pockets. I emailed (Levi's, Dickies, Lee ect) and asked why their women's clothes have such horrible teeny tiny pockets? They told me women don't want pockets. Really! Please email, call, tx what ever and demand functional pockets in women's clothes. Thank you.

  40. What a great video!! ,you helped me heaps i put pockets in my hiking jacket with your post thanx again

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