Color Block Hoodie Hack – Adding an Additional Zipper Pocket
Skill Level: Confident Beginner (due to zipper and pattern modifications)
Learn to hack this color blocked hoodie pattern to add an additional zipper pocket to the bodice!
- The pattern used for this sweatshirt was the Tuesday Hoodie from Ellie and Mac Patterns which was modified to remove one of the color blocks from the bodice and sleeves as well as add the zipper pocket.
- Fabric - This pattern is designed for knit fabrics
- From the In-House collection of fabrics – Sweatshirt Fleece, Premium Jennifer Lycra, Premium Athletic Knit, Spun Hi Loft T-shirt Jersey, or Double Brushed Poly (DBP) are all great options
- For this sweatshirt, I used Premium Athletic Knit (PAK) – which is a very versatile base with great 4 way stretch (Want to learn more? You can find a list and description of all the in-house bases here: https://violetsnowcustomfabric.com/pages/in-house-fabrics )
- Burtonesque Princesses as their Villains Panel Pack 5 – used for front panel, with extra black material used for top of sleeves, pocket bands, waistband, and sleeve bands (you will have one large panel left over)
- Burtonesque Princesses as their Villains Vibrant, Standard Scale – 1 yard – used for front pocket, sleeves, back top panel, and hood (you will have leftover fabric)
- Burtonesque Princesses as their Villains Coord, Standard Scale – 1 yard – used for front and back bottom panels, zipper pocket interior, and hood (you will have leftover fabric)
- For the zipper, I used 21.5 inches of zipper tape and added a custom zipper pull – there are plenty of great custom shops that offer these products or you can even purchase them from Amazon
- If you do not have access to zipper tape or pulls, you can purchase a zipper to use instead. Just make sure to give yourself some extra length to assure your zipper will be long enough. (Note: a separating zipper is not necessary since the zipper will be bound on each side of the pocket)
- Cutting Mat & Rotary Cutter
- If you don’t have these, that’s okay – you can use fabric scissors. A Cutting Mat and Rotary Cutter just make measuring and cutting a little faster and easier
- Straight Pins and Quilting Clips
- Used to hold your pieces together while sewing
- Iron and Ironing Board/Mat
- For pressing (as desired)
- Sewing Machine / Serger
- Used to assemble your pattern
- I used a serger to assemble this sweatshirt; however, a zig zag, triple stitch, or twin needle can be used on a sewing machine. These stitches are great for knit fabrics as they allow the fabrics to stretch without popping seams
- All topstitching was done using a twin needle on the sewing machine
- Cutting out your fabrics will be the hardest part since we are making modifications to the pattern.
- Print and assemble your pattern according to your desired size
- When cutting is complete, you should have the following:
- Front Top Panel (modified)
- Back Top Panel (modified)
- Front and Back Bottom Panels (modified)
- Sleeves: Top
- Sleeves: Bottom (modified)
- Pocket (modified)
- Pocket Lining (modified)
- Pocket Bands (modified)
- Wrist Cuffs
- Here is a breakdown on how to modify the pattern pieces:
- Front Top Panel – this panel is modified to remove the additional color block. Decide how far down you would like to extend the panel (note: the pattern is already drafted with the seam allowance, so there is no need to add one when modifying your pattern piece). The length you decide to extend is a personal preference – I wanted the pocket and bottom bodice to fall about mid-torso, so I created a size XXL for a height of 5’3” and extended the Front Top Panel down by 4 inches. In the picture below, you can see the original front top panel from the pattern with the addition of the middle panel from the pattern. I drew a line where I wanted the modified Front Top Panel to fall on the middle panel pattern piece. Cut 1 on fold.
- Back Top Panel – using your same measurements from your modified front panel, cut the Back Top Panel using the back neckline guide from your pattern piece. Cut 1 on fold.
- Front and Back Bottom Panels – Take the bottom part of the middle panel pattern piece from where you drew the line from the step above and add your bottom panel pattern piece. This is your new modified Bottom Panel (these are the same for the front and back panel). Additionally, there are height adjustment instructions listed in the pattern if you need to adjust for height. Mine was adjusted to a height of 5’3”. Cut 2 on fold.
This is what your modified Top and Bottom Front Panels should look like
- Sleeves: Top – There are no modifications to the Sleeve Top. Cut per pattern instructions
- Sleeves: Bottom – For the bottom part of the sleeve, we will be removing the middle sleeve panel (this is completely optional – if you would like a 3-block sleeve feel free to skip this step). For this step, I first adjusted for height per the pattern instructions, then removed 3/8” from the bottom of the middle sleeve pattern piece and the same for the bottom sleeve pattern piece. This is to remove the seam allowance since you will no longer be sewing the two pieces together. Next, line up the modified middle and bottom sleeve pattern pieces on top of your folded over fabric and cut 2 on fold.
- Pocket – This part can be a bit tricky since we have now modified the color blocking. First, take your pocket pattern piece and lay it on top of your Front Bottom Panel. You will need to extend your pocket up to meet the top edge of your Front Bottom Panel piece keeping in mind the seam and zipper allowance. The pocket should line up with the bottom of the zipper when it is placed along the top edge of the Front Bottom Panel. Add an additional 3/8” to the pocket for the seam allowance when attaching to the zipper.
Your pocket should look like this on top of the Bottom Front Panel when done.
- Pocket Lining – The pocket lining should extend all the way up to the Front Bottom Panel as it will be attached to the top of the zipper instead of the bottom. I used the pocket piece I just cut and extended the top to match the height measurement of the Front Bottom Panel.
- Pocket Bands – Measure the full length of the edge of the Pocket Lining. Using the width measurement of the pattern piece, adjust the length to match your Pocket Lining measurement.
Hood – There are no modifications to the Hood Main or Hood Lining. Cut according to pattern instructions.
- Waistband – There are no modifications to the Waistband. Cut according to pattern instructions.
- Wrist Cuffs – There are no modifications to the Wrist Cuffs. Cut according to pattern instructions.
- Cut your zipper so that it is 1 inch longer than the top of your pocket. This gives you plenty of seam allowance on either side of your zipper. For the size XXL, I cut my zipper to 21.5 inches.
- Attach the bottom of your zipper to the top part of your Pocket piece (do not attach Pocket Lining yet). Make sure that the right side of your zipper is facing the right side of your Pocket piece. (Note: if you find zippers a little intimidating, I would recommend attaching your zipper using a sewing machine rather than a serger.) Once attached, flip the zipper up so that both the Pocket piece and zipper are facing right side up. Topstitch the zipper down to the Pocket.
- Next, with the zipper and the Pocket Lining both facing up, clip the top of the zipper to the top of the Pocket Lining. Baste together.
- Next, add your zipper pull to your zipper tape (if applicable) and secure your zipper by hand stitching a few rows loops. This will keep the zipper teeth together during attachment of the pocket band and ensure your zipper pull is secure and won’t fall off. Fold pocket bands in half and attach on either side of your pocket, making sure to also capture the pocket lining. Topstitch as desired.
- Center your pocket on the Bottom Front Panel with right sides facing up. Clip and baste pocket in place.
- With right sides together, attach the Top Front Panel the Bottom Front Panel / Pocket you just created. Topstitch as desired.
- With right sides together, attach the Top Back Bodice to the Back Bottom Bodice. Topstitch as desired
- Attach the Back Bodice to the Front Bodice at the shoulder seams.
- With right sides together, attach the Sleeve Top to the Sleeve Bottom. Topstitch as desired.
- With right sides together, attach the sleeves at the shoulder seams of the bodice.
FINISHING THE BODICE
- With right sides together attach the front and back bodice together, starting at the sleeve and working your way down to bottom panel.
- With right sides together, take your Wrist Cuffs, fold them in half and sew together.
- With right sides together, take your waistband, fold it in half and sew together
- Find the center neckline of the front bodice and clip the front edge of the hood in place (right sides together). Work your way around the neckline evenly spacing out the hood until the other front edge of the hood overlaps the first by about 1 inch. Sew together.
All done! Congratulations on your new color block hoodie with hacked zipper pocket! We would love it if you would share it in or Facebook group Violet Snow Custom Fabric Insiders Group