Making the Pockets for the Big Pocket Advent Calendar

Hello! And welcome to the first part of the Big Pocket Advent Calendar Along – making the pockets! The pockets are designed to be sturdy and roomy so there are a few steps to follow but hopefully, you’ll find them fun!!!

For this version of the Advent Calendar, I am using a mix of three fabrics for the pockets. I am going to use twelve (12) of the white car fabric, and six (6) each of the other two fabrics.

Big Pocket Advent Calendar Sew Along: hints and tips on sewing the pockets

This fabric is really cute but is a bit thinner than I would like. To strengthen the pockets for all the goodies that will be put inside (and to help it last a good few years!) I am adding interfacing to the fabric.

Big Pocket Advent Calendar Sew Along: hints and tips on sewing the pockets

If you are looking to add interfacing, my preferred way is to cut it 1/4 – 1/2″ more than half the height (I cut 5″ strips). This means that once it has been fused to the Wrong Side of the front of the pocket, you will have a nice crisp fold line, but have not added too many layers making it bulky, which can cause problems with sewing later.

Once the fabrics are sewn together into strips of pockets, you can choose whether or not to top-stitch along the edge of the pockets. I thought a little red would add some nice detailing and help with the pocket structure!

Big Pocket Advent Calendar Sew Along: hints and tips on sewing the pockets

To form the pocket structure, we need to do a little bit of origami (and pressing to set the folds!).

In the pattern, I mention using pins to mark the pockets out. However, I have also found it just as easy to stand, fold and press with an iron as I go. So you may want to try both ways to see which you prefer.

If you decide to try the measure, fold, press approach, I find it easiest to turn the pocket over 180* between each fold and use the seam lines as a guide for the folding lines (see pictures above).

The key thing to remember is that all the folds are made wrong side to wrong side (creating ‘peaks’ on the front of the pockets).

Big Pocket Advent Calendar Sew Along: hints and tips on sewing the pockets

To secure the folds, edgestitch along each fold – try and stay as close to the edge as you can – if you top-stitch too far away from the edge it will impact the size of the pocket.

Big Pocket Advent Calendar Sew Along: hints and tips on sewing the pockets

The final step is to add the pocket numbers. Depending on what you’re using for the numbers, you could add them at a later stage.

With the original Big Pocket Advent Calendar, I hand-stitched felt labels to the front of each pocket. However, for others, I have ironed self-adhesive numbers to the pockets once the calendar had been fully made up.

Big Pocket Advent Calendar Sew Along: hints and tips on sewing the pockets

For this version, I am using wooden numbered trees (you can find similar here and here) which I am then sewing on to each of the pockets with a glittery red felt background. It’s a little time consuming, but I love the effect!

Big Pocket Advent Calendar Sew Along: hints and tips on sewing the pockets and adding number tags

And that’s it for today. See you next time for attaching the pockets to the background fabric.

You can pick up a copy of the pattern here and don’t forget to follow @fabricandflowers and use the hashtag #bigpocketcalendaralong so that everyone can see what you are making. I’d love to share your finished calendars in the final post!

Let me know if you have any questions,

Thanks,

S x

Today’s sky::: quite overcast

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