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I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of origami using fabric instead of paper, it’s just one of the many things I plan to explore further one day when I have more time. (I’m not sure when that day will come, but never mind!) So at a recent meeting of my neighbourhood group of the Australian Sewing Guild I took the chance to make a sample origami pocket.

Actually, as folding fabric goes, this is pretty simple. Check out the work of a guy called Jeffrey Rutzky, author of the books Shadowfold and Kirigami. I couldn’t find his website, perhaps he doesn’t have one, but there are plenty of images of his work online and they are amazing.

Our pockets were basically a welt pocket with a triangular opening, and three lips to fill that opening, all different shapes and angles. Mine looked like this:

Origami pocket sample

I wasn’t careful enough about the placement of the pieces, not realising at the time how important it was, so mine has a hole in the middle, all of the lips should actually meet. But, I could turn this into a design feature by making my pocket bag to go behind it from some contrasting material, and make it look as if it was intended to be that way!

I did a quick Google search but I couldn’t see a tutorial for making these particular pockets. I think originally they may have been in a Threads magazine article. There is a YouTube video of a guy called Arif Khan making what looks roughly like the same thing, only he uses knit fabric, which I think adds another layer of difficulty. There are also lots of other ideas for decorative and original pockets, room for yet more experimentation and play. What’s your favourite?