Facing my fears

Are there techniques you know how to do but avoid doing anyway?  For me that would include sewing a fly, yoke pockets, and especially…welts.  I learned how to sew a welt pocket from Ann over a year ago when she taught her “Fearless Welt Pockets” class.  And sure enough I’ve avoided them ever since.  But since I had less than a week left before going back to work I thought I might as well go all in and add a bunch of them to the already-involved motorcycle jacket project.

My first thought was to have exposed zippers in the pockets:

Fortunately I made a sample first, since I didn’t remember exactly what I was doing.  I made the welt too narrow, the zipper bulged in the center, and the topstitching was pretty ugly.  In the end I decided that the metal zipper teeth would make the pocket too painful to use.

Next  made a little credit-card pocket with contrast welts in the front facing:

I figured that since it was hidden, if I screwed up too badly it wouldn’t be obvious.  I had some trouble getting the welt aligned properly so it still bulges slightly, but better than my first try.

By now I had the front and back panels of the jacket made and I basted them together and tried them on.  No way around it…it had to have front welt pockets.  Ann’s method is to first make an open rectangle in the fabric, stabilized with organza.  I realized I really enjoy this part of the welt construction.  Something about sewing and cutting a very precise shape:

Then she has you make the welt lips separately and attach these to the flaps of the opening.  For the front pockets I decided to make these from the same fabric as the jacket and to close them with an invisible zipper.  First I cut the welt lips and sewed them to the zipper.  The zipper was about an inch longer than the welts which worked out perfectly for this:

Then I zipped up the zipper and basted the welts into place:

Finally I sewed the welts to the flaps of the opening, and tucked the zipper pull back through the side of the pocket.  Et voilà:

Ok, here’s how the front panel looks so far.  The pattern is the one I muslined, Burda 7424, and the fabric is a heavyweight wool knit I found in my stash.

Oh yes and speaking of things I know how to do but avoid doing, here’s a pair of pants that I cut out last February.  It’s the same pattern as these wool tweed pants I made, but by the time I’d cut these out I’d outgrown those and I figured I’d wait until my waistline stabilized to sew them up.  Then they languished for several weeks while I avoided putting the belt hardware in.  And a buttonhole.  Anyway now that they’re done I love them.

Which does not mean I’ll be any faster sewing up pants the next time.