Briefly interrupting the Elisalex Dress Sewalong to bring you a quick and easy tutorial on how to add side seam pockets - not only to the Elisalex Dress, but also to just about anything with a side seam! I think we can all agree that the addition of pockets significantly ups the convenience of almost any garment - and you'll be surprised how easy it is to do...
Cut out 2 pairs of pocket bag pieces. You can either use our pocket pattern piece, download it here, or simply draft one yourself - copy the shape below, making sure it's big enough to get your hand in, plus extra all round for the seam allowance!
Snip a little notch into the side seam of your main fabric (on each side of your front and back pieces) to mark the top of where your pocket will sit. On this high waisted skirt shown, we have snipped the notch about 5 1/2" down from the waistline. Using the image below as a guide, take one of your pocket bag pieces and lay it, right sides together, onto your skirt front piece (or jacket piece or whatever you are adding pockets to!), aligning the top of the pocket piece with the notch you just snipped. Pin into place. Repeat this on the other side, and on both sides of the skirt back piece.
Stitch the pocket pieces into place with a 3/8" seam allowance. This is so that when we close the side seams, the pockets will sit slightly inside, for a more discreet finish.
Turn the pocket pieces out, and press.
Now place the skirt back pieces onto your front piece, right sides together, and pin down the side seams and all around the pockets pieces.
Close the side seams as normal, pivoting when you get to the top of the pocket, stitching the two pocket pieces together, then continuing down the rest of the side seam, using the image below as a guide.
Now press the side seam towards the front and when you turn your garment to the right side, you'll have something that looks a little bit like this:
Super easy no? And this is a technique that can not only be applied to any skirt/dress/jacket/trousers etc that you're making (provided it has a side seam!), but you could even add side seam pockets to any existing garments simply by unpicking the side seams and following the instructions above - just think of all those vintage dresses in your wardrobe that would benefit massively from the addition of pockets!