Sunday, July 18, 2010

Have you ever sewn.....

...a bluff pocket? I had no idea that that was that they were called but when I did a search on invisible pocket, found this post at the always excellent Fashion Incubator site. I have always liked the look of them ie no visible topstitching, but have never had the need to sew one until now.

I am working on these shorts for Miss C’s wardrobe....

Burda WOF 03-2008

... and I *think* what the Burda instructions describe is basically a bluff pocket, so I put together a very basic tutorial on how to sew one! Please bear with me, my camera is acting the fool so these were taken on my mobile.

Step 1
Mark the stitching line for the pocket on the right side of garment piece (shorts/pants/skirt/jacket etc). Mark the stitching line on the pocket piece. This is very important. I didn’t realise this at cutting stage so had to mark a very bodgy chalk line which you can see in the next pic. A couple of notches won’t go astray either.

Step 2
Finish the raw edge of the pocket. This isn’t entirely necessary, depends on your type of fabric really. I left mine raw then decided I wanted a neater inside edge and actually had no trouble overlocking the edge after the pocket was sewn on.

Step 3
Place right side of pocket on right side of garment.

Step 4
Sew pocket to garment, following marked stitching lines and gradually bringing pocket piece around to match up notches and stitching lines.

Note the absence of pins. This is why the marked stitching line and notches are essential. You cannot actually pin the pocket in place, it needs to be brought around to meet the stitching line as you sew.

Inside the pocket.

Finished pocket. No topstitching, noice!

The Burda pocket was gathered onto the shorts so in reality this makes the technique quite easy as a few extra tucks here and there aren’t a problem. This was also a very wide curve, I expect a smaller, tighter curve would be trickier to attach so more notches would be helpful.

I was surprised at how easy this was to actually sew. I will definitely do more of these. I especially like the look in tailored wool garments where topstitching can tend to look cheap.

I wonder if anyone knows of a different method?


  1. WOW - that was a great tutorial and I never realised that such pockets exist. I mean you see them, but do we really notice all the design variations out there?

    This is a nice pocket though - love the no topstitching effect. It is a very casual/dressy look in one!


  2. So this is a 'bluff' pocket - I haven't heard that term and always called it 'the-pocket-sewn-on-from-the-inside'! I remember learning these at tech and using a placement template, and soon after I ambitiously made a plaid jacket with 4 patch pockets. The checks actually helped to align the pocket correctly!

  3. I'm glad you liked the tutorial Cherri, bodgy pics and all!
    Thanks for visiting Sherry, I'm thinking of making this up in a stripe so I hope the stripe fabric will behave like your checks did and help the process, not hinder it!

  4. My mom struggled a lot with sewing pockets onto pants. She eventually got the hang of it though.