How to sew a zipper is a commonly requested sewing technique. I’d like to share with you my favorite way of inserting zippers using tape instead of pins. Curious? It’s found in my book The Absolute Easiest Way to Sew.
How to Sew a Centered Zipper—A Pinless Technique
- Purchase a zipper 2″ longer than needed. With the longer length, you won’t have trouble stitching around the bulky zipper pull.
- If the zipper is more than 2″ longer, wrap fusible interfacing below the finished length, press the interfacing, and trim off the extra zipper tape.
- Baste the seam of the zipper opening with right sides together.
- Backstitch at the end of the zipper opening, then stitch the rest of the seam with a standard stitch length.
- Press the seam open .
- Put the right side of the zipper next to the seam allowance with the pull tab extending past the top of the fabric.
- Use strips of 1/2″ wide tape such as Sewer’s Fix-It Tape to hold the zipper to the wrong side of the fabric.
- On the right side, center another piece of 1/2″ tape over the zipper seamline.
- Attach a zipper foot.
- Stitch across the bottom and up one side of the zipper, guiding the foot along the tape.
- Repeat, stitching across the bottom and up the other side of the tape. Stitching in the same direction for each side of the zipper helps eliminate puckers.
- Stitching is complete. Pull the threads tails at the bottom of the zipper to the wrong side and tie; then clip.
- Remove the tape on the outside and inside of the zipper.
- Remove the basting stitches in the seamline.
- Bar tack (zigzag at a zero stitch length) across the top of the zipper tape on each side, move the tab down into the fabric, and cut off the excess tape above the bar tacks. (Optional)
- That’s it!
All my favorite sewing tips are in one book
The Absolute Easiest Way to Sew chapters include:
- Sewing Notions
- Sewing Machine Confidence
- Serger Spotlight
- Fabric Facts
- Sewing Basics
- Beyond the Basics
Watch Sewing With Nancy online.
Bye for now,
Nancy Zieman—author, pattern designer, businesswomen, producer, and national sewing authority—is the host of the popular show Sewing With Nancy®, which appears exclusively on public television stations across the United States and Canada. Follow Nancy’s Blog at NancyZieman.com/Blog and sign up to receive Nancy’s E-News for the latest news in Sewing, Quilting, & Creating.