Covering Embroidered Pockets

Remember in my last D.I.Y post I talked about finding things in vintage or market type stores that you see potential in, but aren't quite right. Also, as many of you will already know I have not long got back from my holiday to Gran Canaria, which I found to be a treasure trove of what I call 'ugly pretty' items. Items that need a bit of work.

Take this pair of shorts that I found. Beautiful colour and a cool fit, but the embroidery makes it look frumpy and old fashioned..

IMG_2949 IMG_2950

Que some scraps of fabric and it becomes vintage looking and pretty. You could also do something similar over pockets of skirts, back pockets of jeans or even lapels of blazers/jackets.

Here is what you will need:
  • The item you want to D.I.Y
  • Some scrap fabric (you could use fat quarters or even something like a pillowcase or scarf), how much depends on what you are covering, so lay it over before hand
  • Some dressmakers paper, tracing paper, or greaseproof paper
  • Dressmakers scissors
  • Pins
  • Normal scissors
  • Thread to match the colour of your fabric (if you are a beginner match as closely as possible for the neatest finish)
  • Sewing machine (or if you are going to hand sew, a needle)
Lets get started..


Step One: Lay your garment flat, and carefully, either trace the shape onto your paper (best to pin the paper to the item) or as I did for this project, measure and then copy onto paper. Measuring will only really work with straight edged shapes. Cut out the shape you have created, regularly checking that it matches the garment.


Step Two: Pin your cut out shape to the right side of your fabric. Use dressmakers scissors to cut out the shape.


Step Three: With the fabric still pinned to your paper, flip over the shape to the wrong side of your fabric. Turn in the edges and make the fold in line with the edge of the paper. Keeping the paper attached still helps to maintain the correct size and shape of your patch, and also make it look more uniform. Pin the hem into place, then iron flat (ironing is very important as otherwise the fold will just fall back open when you unpin).

Step Four: Repeat the last two steps for the other pocket. Simply flip over the template and you'll create an exact opposite. This is a good idea if you are doing this project with lapels of a blazer or jeans pockets. Remove the pins that hold the paper guide from the patches, and also the pins that hold together the seams. Place the patches precisely where you want them to be, and pin them on. Be cautious not to pin closed the pocket opening itself.


Step Five: Time to sew them on! Stitch as close to the edge of the fabric patches as possible, removing pins as you go. Do all three closed sides in one go, and then start again on the pocket opening, being mindful not to sew it shut.


Tada! You're done!

This is such a good way to just update clothes that you are bored of, add some extra pizazz to plain things or like me, covering something pretty vile!


What do you reckon of my shorts makeover? Will you be trying it out? Also, are you enjoying my D.I.Y series?


  1. this is such a lovely idea, i can never find anything all that great in charity shops! xxx

  2. This is such a cute post, definitely want to try this out!

  3. They actually turned out so nice I love this idea! I think i'll be trying this out myself some time soon x