Bulky Pocket Refashion (Tutorial)

Like most girls, I’m all about pockets in clothing. A dress with pockets? Sign me up. But if those pockets ever are in a place or out of material that adds bulk to my body, I’m not thrilled.

A few months ago I picked up a boyfriend style sweater at Target, and although it was super comfortable and a beautiful color, it had pockets way down low on my hips that bugged me every time I wore it. As with many girls, the widest part of my body is my hips, so adding a few horizontal inches was not ideal. Throw in an eight month pregnant belly and I’m feeling really bad about the whole thing. 
Check it out: 
see?? bad.

So with a simple seam and little snip with the scissors, I fixed up those bulky pockets and now the sweater is a million times better. Here’s what I did:

Step 1. Lay your sweater on a flat surface, and arrange the pocket so it’s flat and the top of the pocket is exactly where you want it to be (not sagging down at all).

Pin the top of the pocket in place, and with a straight seam, sew across the pocket (as shown below with the dotted line). I sewed my seam at the bottom of the pocket opening (where the dotted line is), but you can do it in the middle or the top — it makes no difference.

I also sewed in between the ribbing to make my seam as invisible as possible.

Step 2. Turn the sweater over and cut off the pocket about a centimeter from your seam.

The inside of your sweater should now look like this. You can serge or zigzag the raw edge, but it’s not necessary since this fabric won’t fray. 
And that’s it! Pocket decoration still there, but bulk gone — it’s not like I was actually using those pockets anyway. 

And here’s a little before and after so you can really see the difference. Now I’m off to do this with all my other pocketed sweaters, pants, and anything else with annoyingly bulky pockets.

skirt: old navy (shop), top: old navy (old), sweater: target (shop)
As always, comment or email me with any questions! Happy sewing!


  1. Cute skirt! Where is the fabric from?

  2. Amy says:

    I love this idea! I do it to all my pants that come with those trouser slash style pockets because I find they gape open at my widest part haha.

  3. Let me just tell you that I put the white version of this sweater on this morning and the pockets were totally bugging me! Ha! Mine mostly needed to be ironed but you know me and how I don't iron.

  4. Mindy says:

    Amazing, I was just thinking about this today and poof! I click on your blog and there's the how-to.

  5. newpetite says:

    I left a perfectly good sweater back the other day coz of those pockets!! *smacks head*

  6. Niki says:

    That definitely looks better. πŸ™‚


  7. Danielle says:

    I just found your blog this weekend and am hooked! lol. I've never been brave enough to figure out my sewing machine, but you have so many awesome ideas and projects that I'm going to have to bust it out and get learning!


  8. lacey says:

    I have 3 of these same sweaters from Target, and have done the same refashion. Why such big pockets Target ? πŸ˜‰

  9. This is so brilliant! I've always struggled with that bulk and so I've never bought those cardigans. Now I know there is hope πŸ˜‰

  10. Annie says:

    That looks awesome! And I love love love that skirt – so cute πŸ™‚

    The Other Side of Gray

  11. Jenn says:

    Seriously, that is a fantastic idea. I used to throw all my clothes away that had bulky sweaters. But now I do not need to do that anymore!

  12. Jenna & Joey says:

    i love pockets too, my wedding dress even had pockets!! πŸ™‚

  13. Maggiemoo says:

    I have that same sweater and haven't worn in much because of those pockets. Guess I know what I'm doing today. Thank you.

  14. Rachel R. says:

    I wonder if clothing designers have ever looked at actual women. Seriously, whose stupid idea were the bulky hip pockets, anyway? Great refashion!

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