My new pattern ‘Hawksbill’ is a knit t-shirt featuring an optional patch pocket. In this tutorial I’m going to show you step-by-step the way I attached the pocket. You can use the techniques for other embellishments as well, such as elbow patches, patches used to mend holes in your knitting projects or patches just for fun!

You will need:

  • Your main project and your patch, both blocked to your desired measurements
  • Tapestry needle
  • Scissors
  • Yarn (Apx 1 -2yds, in a similar weight and of a matching or contrasting color)
  • DPNS (at least 4, and at least one size smaller than you used for your main project)
  • Safety pins or small stitch holders to set your patch pocket in the desired spot


  1. Make sure your main piece and your patch are blocked, place your patch onto the main piece in the exact spot you’d like. If it’s a garment I recommend trying the piece on (or use a dress form) and then pinning the patch in place. I’m using small stitch holders to keep my patch pocket in place.



2. Using your DPNS, pick up every other stitch on your main piece along the straight edge of your patch.


3. Continue to pick up every other stitch until you reach the end of the straight edge of your patch. Repeat this process on the opposite side of your patch.


4. Now use your remaining DPNS to do the same, picking up every other stitch along the straight edge of the patch itself. You should have the same number of stitches on the DPN threaded through your main piece as you do on your patch. **note: if your patch pocket is square you will continue this step around all straight sides, and if your patch is not a pocket you will do the same ALL sides.


5. Now you will begin to attach the pocket, so thread your tapestry needle with yarn. Begin by threading the first stitch on your main piece and then through the first stitch of your patch.


6. Continue threading from stitches on your main piece to stitches on your patch all the way down the first straight side. This is called an “overstitch” because the yarn is never moved to the backside of the work. The stitches will show on the topside of your work, which makes the patch feel even more rustic, especially if you are using a contrasting yarn.


7. If you are attaching a square pocket or patch you will continue around all straight sides. Because this pocket is rounded, in this instance once you’ve finished one complete straight side cut your yarn, leaving a long tail. Start on the opposite straight side repeating steps 5 and 6.


8. Using your DPNS pick up one half of every stitch at the very bottom of the curve (there are apx 5) and holding the patch pocket taught, pick up half of the stitches on your main piece that line up with the stitches at the base of your pocket curve.


9. Now you will freestyle your way around the curve, using your tapestry needle pick up stitches on your main piece that line up with the stitches at the base of your curve until you reach the stitches on the DPNS, continue threading these stitches and freestyle your way back to the straight side.


10. Secure the top of the pocket to your main piece and thread your yarn tails to the backside of your works where you can weave in ends and secure them. You can play around a bit with how much the stitches show at this point, any stitches that have been pulled extra tight can be loosened by using your tapestry needle to gently loosen the stitch. Dampen and block your pocket into place. I like to use a warm iron and a towel to set the pocket into the main piece.


Read more about my new pattern on Ravelry and more about the Appalachian Knits project!