Adding Pockets to My Swing Maxi Dress

Hey Guys! I hope you all were able to enjoy your holiday weekend. Did you do anything exciting? It poured rain in South Florida yesterday, so it was a wash out. Not that we would have been going anywhere anyway. You feel me? Well, I did get around to making an amazing swing maxi dress. This beauty didn’t have any pockets so I decided to add some. Keep in reading because I’m going to show you how I did it.

Lets talk about the dress first and then well get into those pockets.

The Beaute’ J’adore Women’s Swing Maxi Dress

I believe I picked up the Women’s Swing Maxi Dress pattern by Beaute’ J’adore during a sale she was having. Maybe Black Friday? Not sure, but Nikki was having a bundle pattern sale and I picked it up. I’ve always been a fan of hers and I made one of her McCall’s patterns that you can read about HERE. Now, this pattern is designated as being an intermediate pattern and I would have to agree. If you are new to PDF patterns, then this may not be the pattern for you to start your PDF journey with. The pattern is not laid out like other PDF patterns I’ve used in the past. When you open the PDF, you will notice that it is 1 single page and you aren’t able to print off individual pages as with other PDF patterns. This may be confusing to newbies working with PDF patterns.

Sewing Tips

I have 3 main tips for you when making this dress.

  1. Size down – I made a size 18 based on my body measurements. I mainly went off of my bust size because my waist and hips are larger then the largest size on the pattern. I did not take into account how much ease this dress has. DUH, it’s a maxi dress. I didn’t think about that and ended up having to take in about 3 inches total from the armscye because I had a little too much side boob. If I had been using this dress as a cover up, then it would have been fine.
  2. Fabric choice – Watch your fabric choice for this dress. The fabric suggestions are Crepe, polyester, silk, cotton. Any fabric with a minimum 2-way stretch. Just make sure it’s something light weight. Depending on the size you’re making, you can end up with 4 yards of fabric. This much fabric can weigh you down depending on what kind of fabric you choose. I used some sort of poly blend I purchased at my local fabric store. Since I made the larger size, I used 4 yards of fabric and it’s a bit much for me. Next time, I’ll make this dress is something lighter.
  3. Fitting – As I mentioned before, you should be able to size down when making this pattern. The back and front of the dress has lots of gathers and the dress has a lot of ease, so you probably won’t need to go according to your body measurements. Make sure you try your dress on before finishing it incase you need to make any adjustments as I did. I had already attached the facing so I had to unpick it and make my alterations.

Attaching Pockets to A Dress

OK, now on to the good stuff. Have you ever had a garment and wished it had pockets? I mean, I don’t know about you, but I add pockets whenever possible! lol. This swing maxi dress was no exception. The pattern does not call for pockets, but I added them to mine! It’s super easy.

Choose a pocket pattern and cut 4. For this step you can use any pocket pattern you might gave or you can make one. Check out YouTube if you aren’t sure how to make a pocket, but basically all you have to do is place the palm of your hand on a piece of paper. Spread your fingers out and trace around your hand. Make sure you have a straight edge on your paper as this will indicate where you would put your hands inside your pocket so you can attach it to the side seam of your garment.

Measure down from your dress under arm where you would like to add your pockets. I attached my pockets 7 inches down.

With right sides facing, place your pocket against the edge of your dress fabric where you marked you wanted your pockets to be. Do this to all 4 sides attaching pockets to front and back of dress using a 1/4 seam allowance.

Once attached, open your pockets and press at seam. Now pin together the front and back of your dress right sides facing. Make sure you have taken notice of the markings on the pockets as this will indicate how far down you need to sew when attaching your pockets. If you self drafted your pockets, place a dot about 1/2″ from the top and bottom of the edge of the pocket where you would be attaching the dress at seams. This will indicate where you will stop sewing when attaching your sides so you will have a pocket opening.

With right sides facing start sewing 5/8″ from the top of your dress, sew down to the marking you made on your pockets to leave your pocket opening. Continue sewing all around your pocket and continue sewing down the side of your address.

That’s it! Turn your dress right sides out and now try your on dress and put your hands in your new pockets!

While chatting on Instagram with my friend Tiffany from @tipstitched we discovered that we were both making the same dress and decided to do a little collaboration! Not only did Tiffany do an amazing write up on her blog, which you can find HERE, Sis also did a YouTube video! The video details from printing the PFD pattern to sewing it together. Make sure you go check out her video which you can find HERE.

Well, I hope you guys enjoyed my Beate’ J’adore swing maxi dress and my tutorial on how to attach pockets. Also, make sure you go check out my friend Tiffany on her blog and IG linked above. Tell her I sent you!

Til next time,


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Johanna Ali | So Very Jo
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