Toothpick Pocket

We created the toothpick pocket, because we were fed up with being out in the field, with a morsel of food between two teeth and no means of abatement.

Of course you could carry a toothpick case, but we wanted to wear our preparedness on our sleeve... literally.

Here are a bunch of ideas that we experimented with. You can see that we had way too much fun with this project.

Toothpick Pocket on a Belt

Belt. Always have a toothpick on hand regardless of the clothes your wearing.

Toothpick Holster on a Baseball Hat

Hat. We used a holster here to avoid having to sew through a thick brim.. Some might opt to position the holster to the underside of the brim, but we say, express your inner geek.

Toothpick Pocket with Pocket Protector

Pocket Protector. Include some washable plastic in the shape of a pocket protector. We recycled a strip of tyvek from a used overnight envelope. Since tyvek is plastic-based, make sure you don't iron it (we learned this lesson the hard way).

Toothpick Pocket on a Purse

Purse. Sure there is plenty of room within a purse to hold a toothpick, but why not show the rest of the world how very prepared you are.

Toothpick Pocket on a Sock

Socks. Toothpicks should be kept pretty clean, so the socks were as far down as we were willing to go. If you ever affix a pocket onto your shoes, send us a pic!

Toothpick Holster on an Armband

Armband. For the skater that doesn't want to be caught unable to get that food out of his teeth.

Toothpick Pocket on a Tanktop

Tank Top. The tank top allows for a handy and unique location for your toothpick pocket.

Dual Toothpick Pocket for a Hopeless Romantic

Hopeless Romantic. For those date nights where you don't want you, or your date, to go without a toothpick.

Toothpick Pocket on Dress Shirt and Tie

The Professional. There are two toothpick pockets in this picture: The pocket on the collar is a "patch pocket" like the others on this page; the pocket on the tie, however, is an "inset pocket."

We don't recommend wearing garments with toothpick pockets for interviews but these could be a lifesaver on those never-ending days filled with meetings.

Party Toothpick Pockets on a Hawaiian Shirt

Partier. Always be prepared for appetizer plates full of cubed cheese.

Toothpick Pocket with Cap for the Toothpick

OCD. Include a cap over the exposed part of the toothpick so you don't have to put anything potentially dirty in your mouth.


Fabric Selection

We had difficulty sewing t-shirt fabric; using a stiffer fabric for the pocket itself helped tremendously. Sewing the leather items required a heavy duty sewing machine, but you might try to deal with thick items by resorting to hand sewing. Another approach for thick materials is to minimize sewing by experimenting with the holster-style shown in a couple of the examples above. We made the holsters with two short pieces of elastic.

Matching Fabric Hack

Since such a tiny amount of fabric is required for this project, we found that it was easy to harvest the little snippets of fabric right from the garments themselves. You can get plenty of fabric from shirts that have long tails, or you can even grab some fabric from behind a regular pocket — just remember to patch up the ensuing hole in case the wearer later actually uses that pocket. To get matching leather for the belt, we just purchased a really long belt, and trimmed off the excess; this yielded plenty of extra leather to work with.

Sewing Tip

On such a small item, like a toothpick pocket, it's a little more difficult to sew straight lines and keep close to the edge when you use the pedal. We recommend using the side wheel and progressing slowly. It takes a little extra time, but we found it to be worthwhile.

Can't Sew?

Ask a tailor to do it for you -- how much can it cost for such a tiny pocket?

Toothpick Types

Don't limit yourself to a traditional toothpick. You can get umbrella toothpicks, or colored toothpicks to match the garment, for example.

Toothpick Pocket Location

Don't limit yourself to positioning toothpick pockets in obvious locations. The seam of a t-shirt on top of the shoulder, for example, is a great, out-of-the-way but easy-to-access, location. Some spots, however, could be a little dangerous. You should probably avoid sewing a toothpick pocket in an area where you bend, especially if you plan on going dancing. (Trust us on this one).


Decide whether you want to show off your pocket or go a more sly route. If you want to highlight your toothpick pocket, try fabrics that contrast with garment itself, or use a contrasting thread color. Want a more reserved look? Use fabric from a hidden spot of the piece of clothing, or a piece of material that is similar in color and use matching thread.

Toothpick Caps

If you are concerned about cleanliness, use a toothpick cap. We found that the little rubber stoppers used in jewelry making works perfectly. You can usually find these at your local fabric or jewelry making store.

Have any other clever ideas for toothpick pockets? Let us know in the comments section below!


Answer by  tamarawilhite (17883)

Yes, you can have a tooth pick in your pocket. This is easier if the pocket is in your shirt or jacket and not in your pants. Are you asking if someone has already invented this?


Answer by  onecrore (196)

How about sewing the toothpick pocket right into the upper corner of an existing pocket... that way you don't even need any additional material... you just cordon off a section of a pocket and reserve it for a toothpick.

Reply by snippets (16):
Great idea! This seems like a very workable approach... of course you would lose a little bit of existing pocket "real estate" but at the sizes required for a toothpick, you will still have plenty of room for other items.  add a comment

Answer by  andaman (240)

This project must have been designed for me specifically. I can't count the number of times when I was out and about without a toothpick... I am seriously going to sew these on half my clothes!


Answer by  Anonymous

Better get a swiss army knife, the smaller version, it has a scissor,knife,nail filer,plucker and off course a toothpick, it comes with a ring and can be used as a key chain. Costs about 10$ at Target.


Answer by  altos (224)

Alright, I knew my friends would love this. So I went with a holster technique on my boyfriend's baseball cap. Our friends couldn't stop cracking up. It was the the topic of discussion for much of the party! Great idea!


Answer by  SriLanka (264)

The pockets seem easy to sew, but at that tiny size, I wonder if it is more difficult than it looks... the holsters on the other hand, seem like they would take just a couple minutes.

Reply by snippets (16):
The pockets are tricky at first, but if you try a few times on some scrap material, you can get a hang of it. After some practice, they are pretty easy. You are right though, the holsters are quick - after some practice, you can create one in a few minutes.  add a comment

Answer by  amiv (249)

Nothing sticks in your teeth and gums like popcorn. Bags of popcorn should come with toothpick included, with a toothpick pocket conveniently heat-sealed into on the inside, possibly with a logo.


Answer by  Anonymous

This post and the photos made me SMILE! (thanks)


Answer by  Anonymous

Having been impaled by a toothpick on the foot before, I must say I am not a fan of the idea of sewing a toothpick to a sock. Just seems like it could end badly.

Reply by notorious (249):
ooooo. clever idea!  add a comment

Answer by  apple (447)

My favorite is the OCD -- the toothpick pocket with the toothpick cap. This is definitely going to be my next sewing project!

You have 50 words left!