How To Sew An External Zippered Pocket on a bag, is an easy step by step tutorial for beginners and more advanced quilters.
Making a Patchwork bag with an external zippered pocket will make your bag more functional, as you can put some change money to make some small purchases, without the need to take your coin purse out of the bag, and you can also keep your keys or a card in the pocket, or even your smart phone there.
On this tutorial, I will share the easy steps to follow to sew an external zippered pocket on a bag you might be making with any patchwork method, or on any other fabric you might have at home.
How To Sew An External Zippered Pocket
So let’s jump to the tutorial.
1. Cut Your Fabrics
For this tutorial you will need:
- 1 piece of cotton fabric of 4 1/2 x 6 1/2 inches
- 1 piece of any fabric for the lining of 4 1/2 x 6 1/2 inches
- 1 zipper of 4 or 5 inches
- Bias tape, 23 inches
2. Mark Your Fabric
Lay on your work table the piece of fabric for the lining, pretty side down, and with the help of a ruler and a pencil for marking fabrics, trace a rectangle on the place where you want the zipper to be.
You need to measure the length and width of the zipper, and trace a rectangle 1/8 inch smaller than the zipper, on each side.
3. Stitch On
Lay the fabric for the external pocket on your work table, pretty side up, and lay over this fabric the piece for the lining, pretty side up, pinch a few pins to hold the two layers of fabric together, and stitch on the rectangle you marked on the fabric.
With the help of a pair of scissors to cut fabric, make a first cut in the middle of the stitched rectangle, lengthwise, continue to cut all the way in the middle, to reach 1/4 inch from each end.
Make two cuts diagonally on each end, to reach both corners on each end.
Turn the lining fabric to the back, set the seams with your fingers or with a warm iron.
Pinch a few pins to hold the two layers of fabrics or run a stitching on the edge.
4. Sew On The Zipper
Place the zipper on the lining fabric side, and pin the zipper to the pocket opening, you can keep the pins to hold the zipper in its place while you sew on the zipper on your sewing machine, or you can make a running stitching to hold the zipper on its place.
Stitch on the zipper on your sewing machine, you will need to stitch on the four sides.
5. Sew On The Bias On The External Pocket
You can sew on the bias on the edge of the external pocket, you can trace a curve on the corners, or you can keep the corners squared.
Stitch on the bias on the pretty side of the external pocket. Open the bias, press the seam and turn the bias to the back, now you can do running stitches to hold the bias.
6. Sew On The External Pocket On The Patchwork Bag
Lay the patchwork bag on your work table, with the side of the bag where you want to sew on the external pocket up. Lay the external pocket on the patchwork bag, and pinch a few pins to hold the external pocket on its place.
Before you start stitching the external pocket to the bag, it’s always better to check if the external pocket is well-placed, and I would recommend doing a running stitching on the four sides of the pocket and remove the pins, the running stitches will keep better the pocket on its place while you sew on it to the bag, as pins can always get loose or the pocket can move while you sew on.
The pocket needs to be stitched to the bag on the four sides, this step can be done with your sewing machine or by hand.
7. Final Step To Sew On An External Pocket To A Patchwork Bag
You can do an embroidery stitching on the bias to stitch it to the bag, it will look like a professional finish, I like to do the Herringbone stitch, with a single strand of embroidery floss.
The External pocket is now all stitched to the bag, and it’s ready to be used.
Stitching an external pocket to a bag you made, is a great way to keep some money change in there, your keys or any card you need to often use, this way, you don’t need to take your coin purse from the bag.
I hope you like this tutorial, and follow the steps to stitch on an external pocket to a bag you made, or any fabric bag you already have at home.
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