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Classroom Seat Back Pockets – Update!

Look in an elementary school classroom with tables and chairs instead of desks and you are likely to find seat back pockets on the chairs to help with student organization!  It’s basically a slipcover for the chair with a big pocket on the back to hold school supplies, library books and even textbooks.  They can be plain, multi-pocketed and/or blinged to your heart’s content.

My task was to figure out how to make sturdy “seat sacks” for a friend’s classroom that would have a pocket deep enough to hold a library book, writing journal and a pencil box. She has 12″ plastic stack chairs with the curved tops.  I spent a few minutes after school making a template of the chair back and taking some measurements.  A little web-surfing yielded some design ideas and I drafted my master pattern piece.  A quick trip to Hobby Lobby yielded the twill I needed to construct the prototype.

Will report back and post a tutorial tomorrow after the fitting.

Update:  The prototype cover fit like a glove, but there wasn’t enough room to hold everything that the teacher wanted to seat sacks to hold.  It was a little too fitted shall we say.  So, I went back to the drawing board, made the sack 1″ wider, lessened the upper curve a great deal, increased the “gusset” fold at the bottom to 1-1/2″ and added a gradual curve to the upper edge of the back seat pocket to provide a little easier access to student materials.  And being ever so mindful of the washability factor of the seat sacks, I picked up some 65% polyester/35% cotton bottom weight twill fabric at Joann’s.  It’s not the pretty marine blue that I found at Hobby Lobby;  however, the substituted fabric choice is certainly more practical and within my friend’s budget.  And I promise that a tutorial is coming once everything is the way we like it.

P.S.  Did you know elementary school chairs come in 3 sizes – 12″, 14″ and 16″? The 12″ is the typical K & 1st chair and the 16″ is the typical 2nd – 5th chair – at least at my school anyway.