Pockets on bags are a must for me, and definitely an improvement. Here I’m showing you how to construct a bag with an additional zipper pocket into the outer shell or in the lining, even if your bag pattern does not include this option.
|This is the pocket on my Sophia Bag.|
This tutorial is merely an additional step in your bagmaking, and you’ll end up with a better bag with a pro-looking zipper pocket!
Also, a note on interfacing. Most probably, your bag pattern will call for some type of interfacing to be added to the main bag pieces. Please note that the interfacing should already be applied to the bag pieces before you add the pocket.
- your bag pieces depending on the bag pattern you are using
- a zipper – I used a standard nylon-coil 7″ (18cm) zipper here.
- zipper pocket lining piece – see the template image in this tutorial – the free template (available in the subscriber-resource library for all newsletter subscribers – join the free newsletter here!)
Free PDF Template
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How To Sew A Zipper Pocket – Tutorial
And here’s an alternative, if you don’t want to use the template:
Mark the zip opening on the wrong side of the zipper pocket lining piece:
- Measured from the TOP EDGE of ‘Front ZIP Pocket’ draw a horizontal line at 1″ (2.5 cm) from the upper edge. This will be the top line.
- Draw another horizontal line below the first one at a distance of 1/2″ (1.3 cm)
- Draw vertical lines on each side, making sure the rectangle stays centered on the pocket lining piece.
- Dimensions of the rectangle in the image: 1/2″ (1.3 cm) tall and 6″ (15.2 cm) wide.
You can either use tracing paper, or a shortcut:
Note: NO CUTTING YET!
3) Now, shorten the stitch length to approximately 15 stitches per inch (or 1.7 mm in metric). Stitch exactly on the stitching line of the rectangle you just drew.
4)Cut along the inner line until the triangle. Then also cut into the corners into the V-shape, until very close to the stitching line. Make sure not to snip into any stitches!
5) Then pull the pocket fabric through the window to the other side, so you get the pieces to be wrong-sides-together.
6) When you have the lining on the other side, you’ll have to pull on the lining and finger-press the seam to get that lining part hardly visible from the front side.
7) Now flip the piece so the back side, i.e. the zipper lining is on top. We’ll work from here: place the zipper onto the opening. Zipper teeth should face the outer side (i.e. down). Center the zipper. Zipper pull should be in the opening, visible from the front side.
Metallic stoppers should not be visible from the front, nor should be in the way when stitching.
Pin in place or tape the zipper into the opening (Wonder Tape works great!)
8) Keeping the zipper in place, edgestitch around the opening. Cut off any excess zipper tape.
9) Then fold the pocket lining upwards and pin in place.
10) Stitch around the 3 sides, only catching the pocket lining fabric (here blue).
This is another of my bags with this type of zipper pocket:
So beautiful, but easy to sew with a little practice!
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Save this tutorial for later so you can use it on all your bags from now on:
Want More Patterns+Tutorials?
It already includes this type of pocket, and you’ll be guided through the entire sewing process. Happy sewing!