Sewing a pork chop

sewing a pork chop

I imagine you’ve heard of a tailor’s ham, the cushion-like pressing tool – maybe you own one or have even made one.

But a tailor’s pork chop? It’s a pressing tool I happened across by Daniela of @doctorstitches on Instagram. You can get a copy of the free pattern by joining her facebook group here; the pattern is in the “files” section.

The pattern is very simple, essentially a small cushion with darts. It’s a good, quick “instant gratification” project.

The instructions are clear and simple to follow.

The shape of the pork chop is very rounded with a small and big end. I made mine with plaid wool on one side and calico on the other, and interlined both with the same calico, for strength. Daniela used cotton canvas for hers.

sewing a pork chop all cut out

The pork chop has 10 darts in all, 5 on each side. The points need to be smooth and tapered so the finished shape is rounded rather than angular.

sewing a pork chop darts
If you’re interlining the pieces like I did, sew the two layers together through the centre of the dart before you sew the actual dart. A big stitch is OK. It makes the dart easier to sew and stops the layers moving.
sewing a pork chop darts sewn
Darts done and pressed.
While pressing the darts I felt like I needed the tool to make the tool!
sewing a pork chop pressing the darts
Darts pressed one-one-way, one-the-other-way.
sewing a pork chop stitching around the edges
Edges stitched together, curves snipped, ready to turn through and stuff.

I stuffed it firmly with wool tops from my feltmaking phase. As is always the way, it took a lot more stuffing than you’d guess would fit in there.

sewing a pork chop ham comparison
Here it is next to a regular tailors ham.

I can see some good uses for this – pressing shoulder areas, armholes, sun hat gores, large darts, anything very rounded.

sewing a pork chop finished pork chop

Thanks Daniela for an interesting and easy pattern!



  1. Sue Stoney on November 29, 2020 at 8:17 pm

    This is rather interesting. I’ve got a couple of hams but don’t feel as though I’ve ever mastered them. Maybe I need a pork chop!

    • lizhaywood on November 29, 2020 at 9:01 pm

      Maybe you do – I’m hoping for a breakthrough in my pressing life!

  2. Carol in Denver on December 5, 2020 at 4:54 am

    If you have a bit of fluffy wool fabric around, it is very easy to make pressing “hams” for any need. I have covered tin cans to get just the curves needed for particular projects.

    • lizhaywood on December 5, 2020 at 8:18 am

      That is a good tip! Thanks Carol 🙂

  3. donna on March 21, 2021 at 9:26 pm

    Oo,I need to make one of these – I can fill it with my scraps and it will make pressing my shoulder/arm seams much easier. I don’t have any wool fabric though, just some wax print cotton. It’s quite stiff – would this work do you think? I’m going to be calling mine a Tofu Chop, since I’m veggie!

    • lizhaywood on March 21, 2021 at 10:33 pm

      Yes, make one! They’re really handy. I use mine all the time – more than a tailors ham – and I tend to only use the cotton side, so probably could have made both sides cotton. Unsure about the wax print – have you washed it to see if it gets any softer? It would make a pretty groovy pressing tool!

      • Donna on April 30, 2021 at 12:22 am

        I finally got round to making my pork chop – it looks great with the wax print fabric and I used up a whole pile of offcuts from my overlocker to stuff it. Thanks for sharing the link to the pattern. Need to make some clothes now, so I can use it!

      • lizhaywood on April 30, 2021 at 9:16 am

        Excellent! Thanks for reporting back 🙂

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