How to add pockets to any dress pattern

How to add pockets to any dress pattern main image.

So you find the perfect dress pattern. It’s beautiful and flowy, something straight out of a fairytale. And you’re like… "Hey, I could totally live in that thing!" But then you're also like, "Hey, dresses are actually super impractical." 

And then you're like... 

Crying gif

This is why all awesome dresses have pockets. With pockets in your dress, you can now justify not wearing pants ever again for the rest of your life! So let me take you to pocket-dress pleasure town using my free Teardrop Dress Pocket pattern, shown in this beautiful Summer Breeze Dress I made. {Editor's note: As of January 2024, the Summer Breeze Dress Pattern is no longer available for purchase. Try our Sojourner Bias Dress!}

How to add pockets to any dress pattern Image

So now that you’ve seen the pockets in all their glory, let’s get you making your own! Start by downloading the free pocket pattern here.

Make sure you print your pocket pattern at 100% or actual size. Then cut it out and use it to cut 4 mirror pieces of coordinating or matching fabric for your dress. The right side of the fabric is represented in these instructions by the polka dot pattern. The wrong side is represented by the grey color.

Also, be sure to use some washable marker to mark the stitch marking on the wrong side of the pieces.

 Teardrop Pocket Instruction 1

Find the point in your dress pattern where your natural waist will hit. Lay your pocket pieces on top of your dress/skirt pieces with the right sides together and the flat edge of the pocket out towards the side seam. Drop them so that the top of the pocket is about 2.5″ from the point of your natural waist.

The natural waist is illustrated in these pictures as the top edge of the skirt piece.

Use your sewing machine to stitch the pockets to the skirt/dress pieces starting at the top of the pocket and stopping at the stitch marking.

Universal Teardrop Dress Pockets Image 2

Next, flip the pockets outward and press the seams in towards the skirt pieces.

Universal Teardrop Dress Pocket Instructions 2

When it is time for you to sew your side seams in the assembly of your garment, lay the skirt pieces on top of one another with the right sides together then stitch down the sides making sure to go around the pockets as illustrated below.

Universal Teardrop Dress Pocket Blog Image 4

That’s it! Flip your dress right side out and your inseam pockets will be good to go.

Teardrop Pocket Dress Tutorial Image 5

Now go forth and make all the pocket dresses!

-- Originally written by Jessica Hooley. Archived by Holly Hetzner. 

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