How to Embroider on a Pocket


You can add embroidery to a pocket before affixing it to a new clothing item or add an embroidered image or monogram to the pocket of your favorite shirt or pants. Add an embroidered monogram to the pocket of a new bathrobe for a special friend or family member, or add decorative embroidery to the back pockets of your favorite jeans. When adding an image to a finished item, the pocket must often be removed first to provide more convenient access to the pocket, but the pocket can easily be reaffixed afterwards.

Things You'll Need

  • Seam ripper or tiny scissors
  • Tracing paper
  • Tracing pencil
  • Sewing pins
  • Temporary adhesive spray
  • Tear-away stabilizer
  • Small embroidery hoop
  • Embroidery floss
  • Embroidery needle
  • Thread
  • Sewing needle
  • Remove the stitching that is holding the pocket in place. You can use a seam ripper when removing the pocket from sturdy material, such as denim, but use a tiny pair of scissors to cut out the stitches from flimsier fabric.

  • Trace the design you would like for the embroidery onto a piece of tracing paper with a tracing pencil. Alternatively, you can print the design from the computer onto printable tracing paper.

  • Pin the traced image to the front of the pocket. Spray the back of the pocket with temporary adhesive spray, and attach a piece of tear-away stabilizer to the back.

  • Place the joined pieces into an embroidery hoop and close the clasp on the hoop. Do not tug on the fabric when inserting it into the embroidery hoop or the stitching will not stay smooth when you remove the fabric from the hoop.

  • Thread a few strands of embroidery floss onto the needle and tie a knot in the ends. Insert the needle into the stabilizer in the back and through the fabric and tracing paper at one edge of the traced pattern, letters or image.

  • Stitch the design onto the pocket and end the stitching on the underside of the pocket. Tie the floss in a knot.

  • Cut the paper and stabilizer around the stitching and then pull off the remaining pieces carefully.

  • Insert thread through the eye of a needle and knot the ends. Pin the pocket back into place on the item from which it was removed. Insert the needle into the wrong side of the fabric and sew the three sides of the pocket to the item (leaving the top open).

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