February 28, 2011

The dart-and-pocket trick

Remember this pattern piece? Well, I got enough time to work on my jacket last weekend to put it together.
It's not really a how-to, but if you know how to do a bound pocket, this may help de-mystify the dart-and-pocket trick (if it was a mystery to you, maybe that was just me last year...)

Anyway, first I sewed up that front dart. I pressed it open and applied the horsehair in which I had cut out the dart, catchstitching the seam allowance of the dart to the horsehair. The bit about the horsehair is not really relevant to what I'm trying to explain here but it is why the photograph is like this. The dart gives such shape to the pattern piece that some bits of basting and catchstitching had to be done with the bust piece draped over my small tailor's ham.

After that, I sewed the side seam and fused not-woven interfacing (Vlieseline, I never use that stuff except for things like this) to the spot where pocket will be. I prepared the pocket flap and welt pieces, and proceeded to make a bound pocket with flap as normal.
Only when I cut it open, I only had to cut though the interfacing for most of the pocket's length.

And this was the result. I'm rather pleased with it.
After the pockets, I made two bound buttonholes.
Next up: padstitching the collar and lapels.


  1. Your pocket looks very professional. I have a Burda magazine pattern that is cut the same way. I am interested in your hand stitching of the interfacing. What happens to the stitches that are visible on the outside of the garment?

  2. I am also curious about the hand stitching. I have seen it in several blogs but I never understood why it's done. Is it to stabilize the interfacing before sewing the jacket or? Sorry for asking such a naive question

  3. It's not a naive question.
    In the past, I used to wonder about the visible basting myself whenever I saw half-contructed jackets like this (around here, some tailor's shops have items like that on diplay in their windows, so even if you son't sew, you come across them).
    You are right sewing princess, it is to stabilize the interfacing onto the fabric. As soon as I started working with these materials, it all made sense. You have to be able to rely on having the horsehair in the right position when you start padstitching and during construction, wool and horsehair have to be sewn and pressed and molded into shape. They need to be bonded together for that to work. Of course, the basting will all be removed when the jacket nears completion.

  4. Great tutorial. THanks for posting it!