Afterthought Pockets

Pockets are great. But sometimes it's hard to know where to put them until your sweater is finished. Afterthought pockets to the rescue! They're fun and easy, and you can decide exactly if and where to put your pockets.

This method is one of Elizabeth Zimmerman's many brain children, and you can also read about it in her book, Knitting Without Tears, available through Schoolhouse Press.

Try on your sweater and decide where you'd like your pockets.

Select locations for top of pocket ribbing, then mark 1" below that location for cutting, making sure that both pockets are marked on the same round.
(If you're not sure where a comfortable height would be, roughly where your jeans' pockets would top out is usually a good bet.)

Mark locations for outer pocket edges. (Outer pocket edges often work out nicely at about an inch in from the sweater's side.)

Measure 4 3/4" in from outer pocket edges and mark locations for inner pocket edges.

The following instructions are for a single pocket. For a pair of pockets, make 2 the same.

On the rnd that marks for cutting, midway between the outer and inner pocket edges, make a snip in the yarn. Yes, you can do this!

Working from the center outward remove the cut yarn revealing live sts both above and below, working to the outer pocket edge.

Then working from the center inward, remove cut yarn until a total of 22 live sts are revealed on the bottom, place those onto ndls for working the ribbing.

(22 is the number I used for this tunic, whose gauge is 18 sts per 4". That number may be adjusted for a different gauge or a different type of ribbing.)

On top, leave a yarn strand running through the half stitch on the outer edge and the half stitch on the inner edge, and place 21 full sts plus the 2 half sts onto ndls. The top ndl with 23 sts and the bottom ndl with 22 sts will meet like a zipper, with sts alternating.

(Or if working at a different gauge, your top number of stitches should total 1 more than on the bottom.)

Ribbing - work upward from bottom 22 sts
With smaller ndls: K2, [p2, k2] to end.
Cont in k2-p2 rib for 1".
Bind off loosely with larger ndls or using sewn bind-off.

Inner Pocket - work downward from top 23 sts

With larger ndls, knit to end.
Work in St st until inner pocket measures 6".
Leave sts on ndls to stitch in place later.

Sew ribbing to sweater.
Following a single column of sweater sts, sew pocket edges to sweater.

Following a single row/rnd of sweater sts, sew pocket bottom to sweater, removing sts from ndl as you go.

Wear and enjoy!