Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wednesday Sewing - Invisible Zippers

In last Wednesday's blog, we made a felt wallet with an invisible zipper.  This is probably the easiest way to first put an invisible zipper in - you don't have to worry about the right side of the fabric and the zipper was longer than what we needed, so we didn't have to worry about sewing around the zipper head.

Putting invisible zippers in clothing really isn't hard, you just have to think about a couple more things!  Today I'll show you how I replaced an invisible zipper in an already sewn dress.

If you've never worked with invisible zippers, I recommend watching the video here first. 

Materials List:

*invisible zipper - get an invisible zipper at least as long as the zipper opening.  Too long is not a problem, too short is.  If you can't find a zipper that matches your fabric, get one that has a zipper pull that coordinates.
*invisible zipper foot
*zipper or narrow foot
*hand sewing needle

1.  Iron (on synthetic setting) the zipper coils flat.  They won't be exactly flat, just flatter than they were.

2.  If you are replacing a zipper, take out the old zipper and take the entire seam out that is below the zipper.  In the dress I'm working with, there is a gathered skirt attached under the zipper seam, so I had to open up the gathered seam on about two inches on either side of the zipper seam.

If you are putting a zipper in a garment you are making, the instructions will probably tell you to sew the zipper seam up to where the zipper will go.  With an invisible zipper, you don't want to do this.  Put the zipper in before you sew the zipper seam.

3.  Open up the zipper and pin the right side of zipper to the right side of the fabric on one edge of the zipper opening.

4.  Lay the other side of the fabric that will be sewn to the zipper next to the side you just pinned.

5.  Pin the other side of the zipper (right side) to the right side of the fabric.  Hand baste both side of the pinned zipper.

6.  Starting at the top of the zipper, put the coil in the right channel as shown below.  Sew all the way down to the zipper head.  While you're sewing, roll the zipper coil flat to make sure it doesn't get caught in the needle.  Repeat with the other side of the zipper.  If your zipper is longer than you needed, follow the instructions in last Wednesday's blog to shorten it.

7.  Pull the zipper head up to the top, switch to your regular zipper foot or narrow foot, and finish sewing the zipper in on each side.

8.  Sew the zipper seam together underneath the zipper.

9.  If you're sewing a garment, continue on with the pattern instructions.  If you were replacing a zipper, put back together what you took apart.  On this dress, I regathered the skirt and sewed the seam and hand sewed the top facing down.

10.  This dress is a good example of how an invisible zipper can give a nice clean finish, especially when you're putting a zipper in the front!  Thank you for your patience, Valerie!

Happy Creating!  Deborah

1 comment:

  1. Thank you!! That looks great! Next time I can try on my own.