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Author Topic: A Vest Pocket Tutorial  (Read 8162 times)
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Jim_Ruley
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« on: February 02, 2008, 12:58:23 PM »

Reading about recent projects, it sounds like some folks are struggling a bit with vest pockets.  I hope the following tutorial will be of assistance.  Comments, additions and corrections are welcome.

We begin with a picture of the left vest front.  The basted lines are the pocket placement marks from the pattern, and the chalk marks the welt seam lines (1/2" lower). 



The material is a striped silk, and the welt stripes need to be matched for a good appearance.  A duplicate welt pattern piece is cut out and placed on the front, matching the seam lines:



The stripes are now marked on the welt.  (Note:  the seam line should still be matched; I moved it before taking the photo.)



The welt piece is cut out, turned over and pinned on place.  The narrow center stripes make precise alignment easy in this case.



As a final check, the welt is basted on and pressed up.  Voila!  Matching stripes!



The welt is pressed flat again and sewn strongly to the front.  A linen stay is added, clear of the seam allowances, to bulk out the welt (this is not needed if thicker materials are used).  It will be retained by the topstitching, but is basted for now.



The back half of the pocket bag is placed ready to sew, a little shy of 1/4" from the placement line.  The white chalk lines mark the seam with starting and stopping points.  Notice this seam is a little shorter (1/8" each end) than the welt seam.



After sewing the back bag seam the pocket is slashed open.  The placement line is used as the slit line but not full width.  Clip carefully in a diagonal direction to the four corners.



This picture is of the inside, showing the edges pressed open.  The welt seam is opened and one half pressed down.  The diagonal slashings in the corners are pressed open.



The welt edges are now folded in, and the welt pressed up.  The top of the finished welt is marked in chalk:



The welt is now tucked through the opening and pressed along the chalk marks.  Ragged edges peeking out of the sides will be dealt with later  Smiley.



The pocket bag is now pressed down, then pulled through the pocket opening (welt partially unfolded for visibility):



To be continued...

Thanks,

Jim Ruley
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Jim_Ruley
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« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2008, 04:49:57 PM »

Here the welt has been topstitched, retaining it in position and trapping all the nasty ragged edges.  I used a backstitch top and bottom, and a whipstitch on the sides:



Inside view of the topstitched welt:



Here the front half of the pocket bag has been pinned to the seam allowance of the welt, ready to sew:



The front bag pressed down over the seam:



The bottoms of the two bag halves are matched and sewn together.  If the sides are straight it doesn't matter if one half is longer than the other; the bottom crease will be formed by pressing.



Here the bag has been pressed, forming the bottom crease as mentioned previously.  The sides are pinned and ready to sew:



The bag after sewing closed:



The next-to-final (penultimate?) step is to tack the slashings at the sides of the pocket (the material that was folded back at the corners) to the back half of the bag.  This can be done on the back side by pinching the slashing to the bag and backstitching.  Or it can be done from the front with a whipstitch, which helps to retain frayed edges.  Both techniques were used in this case, one on each side.



The final step is to tack the sides of the welts.  This is done after any canvas interfacing has been added.

Thanks,

Jim R.
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Mary Gutzke
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« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2008, 05:01:01 PM »

This is terrific, Jim. Thanks for taking the time to take all the photos and go over each step. I'll be making a few more practice pockets in the next couple days.

Mary
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Mary Gutzke
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« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2008, 07:05:12 PM »

You're very welcome, Mary!  Hope it will be of assistance.

Here's the final step, after the welt is tacked through the interfacing:



Thanks,

Jim R.
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John Peterson
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« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2008, 07:08:31 PM »

Jim,

I continue to be blown away with your generous sharing of your expertise, not to mention how well you explain things.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
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Jim_Ruley
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« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2008, 08:54:56 PM »

You're welcome, John!  I'm glad the information is useful.

Thanks,

Jim R.
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netnet
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« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2008, 09:17:40 AM »

Woohooo!! Thank you. I can never seem to get vest pockets right. Now I have expert pictures to help!!
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Annette Bethke
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Linda Hayton
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« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2008, 06:58:38 PM »

Jim,

Thank you, thank you, thank you.  So that's what my pockets are suppose to look like. time to practice, it will be much easier the next time.

Linda
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J-Waters
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« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2008, 10:58:01 PM »

Looks really nice. Don't understand it all. And, I don't understand why you are cutting such a large gapping hole. Sewing the welt and pocketing on about 3/8" apart would be better, less room for a rip to happen; the bigger the hole the easier it is to rip; and if some nut grabs your coat or vest and starts jerking you around it may git ripped. Sometime I'll have to give your method a try. There are several methods like how you showed here and I don't understand any of them. I have two books that some what explain like how you showed, but somewhere they loose me.

The simplest method that I have ever seen is the way Clarence Poulin does it, though I have never done it that way. Poulin's method allows one to put a rounded corner on it if one would like that, and I have seen them. The way "Classic Tailoring Techniques: A Construction Guide for Men's Wear (FIT Collection): Roberto Cabrera, Patricia Flaherty Meyers" does it- seems sophisticated, but I think it is easier than the way you do it. At least I understand it to be able to do it. What is nice about it is you make the welt part first, and then, sew it on and the pocketing, and then finish up.

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Jim_Ruley
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« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2008, 04:04:35 AM »

Quote
What is nice about it is you make the welt part first, and then, sew it on and the pocketing, and then finish up.

I used to do it that way (make the welt first), but found it difficult to sew it on accurately and without catching the edges.  Also, if you make a mistake clipping to the corners of a finished welt, you're done; there is going to be a hole in the garment.  By contrast, if you haven't folded up the welt edges yet you can make an adjustment.

Thanks,

Jim R.
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J-Waters
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« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2008, 01:42:47 PM »

Quote
What is nice about it is you make the welt part first, and then, sew it on and the pocketing, and then finish up.

I used to do it that way (make the welt first), but found it difficult to sew it on accurately and without catching the edges.  Also, if you make a mistake clipping to the corners of a finished welt, you're done; there is going to be a hole in the garment.  By contrast, if you haven't folded up the welt edges yet you can make an adjustment.

Thanks,

Jim R.

You point out two very good reason why to do it your way.

Wish your pictures had numbers on them. I wonder if it is possible to type the number and then place the picture beside it?

The picture with the pins, is that where you are sewing on the pocketing that goes in front? By sewing in the ditch? That would also hide the raw edge of the welt piece on the inside.

The interlining for the welt is sewn on different than I thought it would be. I thought it would be sewn into the seam that sews the welt on. But it looks somewhat away from the seam. And looking at the thread showing it sewn to the welt I guess it gets folded over being doubled. Maybe I don't understand what I think I'm seeing?
« Last Edit: February 04, 2008, 02:42:32 PM by J-Waters » Logged
Jim_Ruley
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« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2008, 04:10:14 PM »

Quote
The picture with the pins, is that where you are sewing on the pocketing that goes in front? By sewing in the ditch? That would also hide the raw edge of the welt piece on the inside.

If you right-click the picture, then left-click on "Properties" you can find the file name.  I assume you are referring to:

15_Frontbagpinned.jpg

If that is the case, yes, except I sewed just above the "ditch".

Quote
The interlining for the welt is sewn on different than I thought it would be. I thought it would be sewn into the seam that sews the welt on. But it looks somewhat away from the seam. And looking at the thread showing it sewn to the welt I guess it gets folded over being doubled. Maybe I don't understand what I think I'm seeing?

No, I think you've got it.  I cut the interlining a little smaller than the finished welt size (doubled) so none of the edges would be caught in the seams.  Then I basted it to the welt.  When it's folded over and pressed, it doubles along the top edge of the welt and is caught and retained by the topstitching.  This piece is only necessary if the welt material is flimsy -- most wool vests won't need it.

Thanks,

Jim R.
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Susanna Kocher
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« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2009, 05:35:40 AM »

Mr Ruley, you are a life saver! I was near tears last night trying to figure out the PP welt pocket instructions when I came here an searched for welt pockets and found this thread!

Thank you!
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