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What has it got in its nasty little pocketses? 

I can’t think about pockets without hearing the voice of Gollum talking to himself in The Hobbit. Clearly, being read to as a child had a big impact on me! There is nothing nasty, or even little, about the pockets Mary Jane Mucklestone designed for the Destination Pullover. They are joyful pockets for keeping treasures in, or for warming your hands on a chilly day.

Expressing joy at the presence of pockets in clothing has become a shared experience for makers of clothing. At the last yarn show I attended, I’m certain I said, “And look! It has pockets!” at least four or five times. Pieces of sea glass, acorns, a delicious wrapped sweet, scraps of pretty yarn—whatever you like to carry around with you, a pocket is your friend.

Pockets are easy to add to any project, once you understand how they work. The pockets in the Destination Pullover use a simple construction: 

  • You knit a pocket back of the size of your desired finished pocket
  • You cast off the same number of stitches as you worked in your pocket back, at the point where you want the pocket opening to be located
  • You knit in the pocket back stitches over the cast off pocket opening
  • And finally you sew down the sides of the pocket back once the garment is complete

In the following video tutorial I’m going to show you step-by-step how to work your pocket. I’ve included instructions on adding waste yarn guides to ensure that you seam your pocket neatly, but this is an optional step, and you can equally sew the seam by eye.

Video notes: If you are watching on YouTube, you can hover over the time bar to see the different sections of the video, which is handy if there’s a particular thing you want to re-watch. The video also has subtitles which you can display by clicking on the CC button.

You are now ready to add your pockets to the Destination Pullover, or indeed any garment project. I hope that you’ll feel really confident making them, and that you will also share the joy of your pocketses, next time you meet up with other crafters.

It’s Léttlopi KAL 2023! in the Lounge. And it’s not too late to start a Destination Pullover.

About The Author

We think Jen Arnall-Culliford is flat-out brilliant. Jen is one of the knitting world’s superb technical editors and teachers, and the star of the tutorial videos.

Cheerful. Cool headed. Supersmart. To take lessons from Jen ups our knitting game, every time.


  • Brilliant! I love pockets. This tutorial makes me so happy!

    • Thank you for this excellent tutorial and for your nice and calm explanation. You give us courage to try new structures in knitting.

  • Couldn’t agree with you more about Jen’s brilliance! I am, as always, delighted to see another of her tutorials.

  • Thank you!! So clever!!

  • I have been avoiding sweaters with pockets, but no longer! The video will be added to my YouTube library of favorites. Thank you!

  • The clever pocket and the fun motif I chose for it on my Destination Pullover remains one of my most delightful knitting experiences! It was easy, fun, and functional for my first pocket.

  • So timely! I started a Destination pullover recently. Not out of Lopi (I’m stash busting) but I’m thrilled to have this tutorial. Thanks!

  • What a wonderful lesson. Especially learning how to sew in the pocket sides will be helpful.

  • Kids love pockets! On the pocket piece for little kids I have added a little whimsy….a heart, a half moon, initials, It’s like a secret!

  • So glad you’re back Jen!

    I remember the joy in making and satisfaction in finishing my first pocket on my first cardigan….

  • The tutorial you want for the pockets you need (and vice versa). Thank you!

  • Terrific! And so nice to see Jen back.

  • Oh gosh I have never looked at smiles and frowns so very closely. Thank you, this was a great tutorial. I probably won’t be joining the KAL but I will be knitting a Destination pullover as soon as I decide the colour sequence from all the Lettlopi in my stash.
    Thank you again. You demystified the pocket construction.

  • I don’t even like pockets but just hearing Jen’s explanation and seeing her lovely work creates a nearly irresistible urge! Smiling stitches, tidy work – I have missed Jen’s voice!

  • Pocket power!! And I always love Jen’s calm, reassuring voice while she explains without over explaining,

  • Thanks – I found this extremely insightful and helpful. I am sure the next time I have a pocket project I will be much happier with the outcome.

  • Most helpful! When I ever get my Oban Cardigan out of the languishing WIP pile, I will be sure to refer to this video.

  • I feel like I could do this now! Thank you Jen!

  • I can’t help but joyfully acknowledge the perfect LOTR reference. Thank you 🙂

  • Jen,
    So happy to see you back! I just love your lessons.

  • Welcome back, Jen! I have a vest that I wish I’d made with pockets. Is there a magic way to come back and add them?

    • Hi Pennie! Yes, you can add afterthought pockets to your knitting. Here is a YouTube link to a tutorial:
      I hope that helps!

      • Lovely to see you back. Have you noticed the link to your website is out of date? It needs amending to ACTechniques.

  • Thank you for this great tutorial! Several years ago my grandson asked that I knit him a cardigan with pockets. I hadn’t made pockets before and had a difficult time finding good instructions, especially for sewing down the pocket liner. These instructions are the best I’ve seen.

  • Great tutorial, I have another tip. Rather than casting off the garment stitches I leave them on a stitch holder and then knit a few rows of 2by2 rib to give my pocket a nice edge, sewing down the side edges to the front of the garment. You could use garter stitch instead of rib if that fits the style of garment better

  • Who doesn’t love a pocket!?!? Thank you for the tutorial!

  • There was a moment at the Vermont Sheep and Wool Festival a few years back when I almost bought(!) a handknit sweater (I know, right?!) but a split-second after reaching for the price tag I realized that what I really wanted was the Liberty-lined pocket 🙂

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