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Hiding a zipper in a pocket

Whether on a skirt or a pair of trousers, a zipper hidden behind the side pocket gives a nice clean line to the garment while concealing the garment opening.

Cut two pieces of fashion fabric 4 inches wide by 10 inches long. Seam long sides together, switching to machine basting for the length of the zipper.

Insert a centered zipper within the seam and remove the basted seam thread.

Using the side front pattern piece, not the pocket facing, position pattern piece with printed side up, against the right side of the fabric and with the zipper 1 inch away from the inside pocket edge of the side front. Cut left side front from fabric strips with zipper inserted. Continue garment construction. When pant or skirt is completed, zipper will be hidden inside pocket.

Ignore waistband markings when putting on the waistband, since the opening is not in center front, center back or side seam but inside the pocket.

Fixing a flat seat

If you have a flat seat, a darted back on a skirt only emphasizes the problem.

Before you cut out the skirt, fold out two-thirds the width of the back dart all the way to the hem. Sew what remains into a very narrow dart. If the skirt has two darts, fold out the one closest to center back all the way to the hem. Then move the remaining dart over so that it is now halfway between the center back and side seam. This technique removes the excess in back pieces.

Sandra Betzina is host of Sew Perfect on Home & Garden Television. Send e-mail to