How to Sew a Hidden Pocket in a Backpack

By Contributor ; Updated September 15, 2017

How to Sew a Hidden Pocket in a Backpack. Lunch money for school has a habit of getting lost, dropped, or stolen. To combat this problem, savvy parents teach their children to hide their money in a safe place until lunchtime. Since the backpack travels to and from school daily, it's an ideal spot to sew a hidden pocket to keep lunch money safe.

Examine the backpack. Determine where the pocket will go. Hidden pockets work well on the underside of straps or flaps, or tucked into an interior corner of the bag. Choose an easily accessible, yet not readily visible area.

Obtain a piece of heavy, tightly woven fabric. Denim works well. If possible, match the fabric to the surrounding area where the pocket will reside. The fabric must be an inch larger than the pocket on every side. For example, if you want a 3 inch by 3 inch pocket, the fabric must measure 4 inches by 4 inches. Trim as necessary.

Choose the method for closing and purchase the supplies. A zipper works best, but for novice seamstresses, snaps, or even an open-ended pocket, can hide lunch money just as well.

Wash the backpack and fabric, then dry in the clothes dryer. This sewing tip saves shrinkage and possible puckering at a later date.

Turn ¾-inch edges toward the underside of the fabric and sew flat. You can use iron-on adhesives in lieu of stitches, but prepare for them to wear out. Turning down the edges keeps the ends from fraying.

Attach half of the zipper or the snaps to the underside of the fabric. Pin the lunch money pocket into place, and use a simple running stitch to attach 3 sides of the fabric to the backpack. Remember to leave the top of the pocket stitch-free.

Match the zipper or snaps to corresponding locations on the backpack and sew into place. Now your child has a permanent, secret place to hide money.


When pinning the pocket, attach it loosely. Stretching it tight will make it difficult for your child to reach in and out of the pocket. Ask your child not to tell anyone about the new pocket. A secret pocket is only useful when it's kept secret.

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