Lesson 1: Introduction and The Design Process
Kenneth King is a couture designer, contributor editor for Threads magazine and a professor at the Fashion Institute of New York.
This course covers:
- Patch pockets,
- Single welt pockets, and
- Double welt pockets.
In the first lesson Kenneth helps you decide where you wish to place your pockets; on your hips or on your chest. He discusses a number of things to consider such as the size of the pocket, shapes of the flaps, the location of the pockets and how to audition the pocket with muslin. For example, did you know that a hip pocket is generally about 3″ below the waist? A large bust can look unsightly with a bust pocket, but a pocket on a smaller bust can help to enhance curves.
Lesson 2: Integrating Pockets Into A Pattern
Kenneth walks you through the steps on integrating your newly drafted pockets onto your pattern pieces. It can be helpful to edit the original pattern – so no seam allowances or other extraneous details.
Just one of the tips Kenneth covers is how to use a tracing wheel to transfer your pocket pattern information onto your patter pieces, especially if your pattern pieces are across seam lines such as a princess seam.
Lesson 3: Drafting the Patch Pocket
This lesson covers two pocket types; the plain pocket with a cut-on facing and a pleated patch pocket with a set-on facing. What’s the difference between the two? A plain pocket with a cut-on facing is where the pocket has a top fold-line and a simple straight stitch to hold the facing in place. This is a great pocket option if you want an invisible stitch line. Unlike the cut-on facing, a set-on facing will have a seam at the very top of the pocket.
Pay attention in this lesson as you will be introduced to industry terminology, the basics of slash and spreading a pattern piece, and how to favour your fabric:
Favoring your fabric gives your fashion fabric just that bit more allowance to make everything sit so much more smoothly. It’s essential when you don’t want linings to potentially show. Whilst not always done in patterns, it is a small step that makes your finished product just that bit more “couture”.
You’ll be introduced to pattern terminology such as “returns”, which is half the depth of each side of the pleat (consider it like your fabric being hidden, then returning to view).
Lesson 4: Constructing the Patch Pocket
Since we are drafting our own patterns, Kenneth assumes that you haven’t sewn pockets before (without instructions) and takes you through all the steps to get a professional finish.
Kenneth covers tips such as:
- Staying the pocket top edge with organza so that it keeps its shape over time,
- Sewing the lining on to the pocket and favouring the fashion fabric,
- Reducing bulk,
- Press the pocket.
Sound simple enough? Well Kenneth shows you how to get a more couture finish by securing the top corners of the pocket with “hidden” cross stitches and using a blind hem stitch to achieve a “seam-free” appearance.
Lesson 5: Drafting the Single Welt Pocket
There are two types of welt pockets covered in this class; a rectangular welt pocket and a shaped welt pocket. Again, you will learn tips such as how to reduce bulk and how to favour your fabric. What might be of most interest to you however is how Kenneth drafts his rectangular welt; he effectively removes seams from the edges of the welt and instead brings it to the back of the welt, creating a much more couture look and feel.
Other tips that Kenneth discusses are the ideal grainlines of your fabric and interfacing; by making your grainline parallel to your fabric you can make sure that your welt won’t stretch over time with use.
Lesson 6: Constructing the Single Welt Pocket
The construction of the shaped welt is very similar to the patch pocket through the use of favouring your material. This lesson only covers the construction of the rectangular welt.
Lesson 7: Designing Horizontal Double Welt Pockets
I am pretty sure that they got the title wrong for this lesson; you don’t design the double welt pockets at all! A more appropriate name is Constructing the Rectangular Welt Pocket.
This lesson is lengthily; first it covers how to construct the rectangular welt, which is actually quite a process, and secondly it covers how to attach the welt to the pocket bag.
Instead of adding seam allowances, Kenneth actually makes the organza function as if it’s the seam allowance. It is a bit more of a complex process, involving organza, interfacing and your fabric, but the result will produce a spectacular result. Kenneth also provides you with some great tips on how to perfectly match up any patterns on your fabric, so that your welt perfectly blends into your clothing (if you want it to).
Kenneth jokes that this welt is called the origami welt, and he is rightly so in the fact that this help involves some complex fabric folding and stitching that ensures that your stitching and seam lines are completely invisible from the front of the welt.
Despite the lengthy process of constructing the rectangular welt, installing the welt to the pocket bag is quite simple. Don’t worry, the hard work is over, and now you can relax.
Lesson 8: Installing the Welt Pockets
This lesson works for both the shaped and rectangular welt. Kenneth uses a zipper foot for this lesson, and due to the steps that he uses I highly suggest you do too.
If you haven’t sewn a welt pocket before, you might find the process a bit confusing, but fear not: Kenneth is a great teacher and will walk you through every step that you need to do, explaining what needs to be done and more importantly why. With a thorough understanding of what is happening, you will be able to replicate the process easier by yourself.
Lesson 9: Constructing Horizontal Double Welt Pockets
This lesson covers both the design and construction of the double welt pocket.
A double welt pocket can look rather complex, so Kenneth starts out by showing you all the parts of the pattern so you have a better understanding of the different functional parts. From this sketch he shows you want parts you need to draft for your own patterns.
Kenneth then goes on to show how to construct the welt pocket, covering tips such as how to make a perfect square pocket and to avoid squewing or twisting the finished product. He even covers a couture technique of pleating your pocket so that the welts will lie flat when they are holding an object.
Lesson 10: Vertical Double Welt Pockets
Again Kenneth walks you through how the pattern is constructed; a necessity to be about to draft your own designs later.
The biggest issue with the vertical pocket is that it will often fold in upon itself; sewing a stay will hold it in place appropriately. Kenneth covers the issue and states what you need to do, but doesn’t go into details as to how to fix the problem.
Lesson 11: Zippered Double Welt Pockets
Like all lessons, you first get a thorough knowledge of the construction process.
It’s important to note that in this last lesson Kenneth skips the steps covered in lessons 9 and 10 to focus upon the new information of shortening and installing the zipper. Kenneth does cover this handy tip on how to fix a zipper if it was installed facing the wrong way without the need to even touch a seam ripper; a tip that’s applications go beyond pocket zippers.
As you have probably noticed, each lesson covers how to draft and construct the pockets in great depth.
A couple people have complained about the audio and lips being out of sync in Lesson 9; I too had this problem and found it rather distracting. You can still get the information you need from the video, but I do hope that Craftsy team fix this video (it really shouldn’t have been published with such a problem)…
If you are interested in drafting your own patterns, either to sell or for personal reasons, then Designing Details: Pockets may interest you. I was a bit disappointed that the class didn’t cover more types of pockets, or some fancy details like piping or shaped pocket openings; it focused upon the fundamentals. I did find the class a bit repetitive, covering the same techniques over and over; such as, installing a horizontal and vertical double welt pocket is essentially the same steps.