An invisible zipper is hidden within a seam, and only the top is visible. Sewing it to a garment is a little different from how you sew others because you don’t topstitch on it, but it is installed in a sewn seam.
- A zipper foot. You can use the regular zipper foot but look for the specialized invisible zipper. Both can deliver the expected results, but a top-quality specialized foot brings a special effect.
- An invisible zipper. If your zipper is longer than the required length, don’t worry because you can easily shorten it or use it as it is. They are made from a nylon coil that is attached to a lightweight tape.
- Pins or a tailor’s chalk.
- The garment that needs zipping
- Sewing machine
- Matching thread
- Iron and ironing board
Prepare for Placement
The initial step is to prepare the invisible zipper and zipper foot following the steps below for placement.
- Open your zipper.
- Adjust the iron box to match the manufacturer’s instructions. Since most of them are nylon, it should be on one dot for warmth.
- Lay the open zipper and press thoroughly on the zipper tape. While on the ironing board, place it pull side down, then use the iron’s pointed side to iron the tape flat and get under the coils.
- If need be, press the edges of the garment where the zipper will be sewn.
Prepare the First Side of the Zipper
Now the zipper is open, and the tape is flattened, follow these steps to sew the first side:
- Place the zipper lying with the pull side facing down on the garment’s right side.
- Decide the seam to use. The commonly used seam is a 5/8″ allowance, then make the necessary markings with pins.
- The seam line and outer edge of the fabric should align with the zipper coil. Align the top edge with the top of the piece or seam end if it is a dress. For a pillow, place the zipper’s shorter side where it is to be sewn.
- Pin the zipper tape to the garment appropriately on the first side. Measure the distance from the zipper coil to the edge of the fabric. This is to ensure that the seam allowance is consistent with the garment along the zipper’s length. Please check again to avoid undoing because it is unbalanced.
- It may feel uncomfortable removing pins while sewing, but you can use your hand to baste the tape in the right position.
Sewing side One
- Following the machine manual you are using, attach the invisible zipper foot.
- With the needle to the right of the zipper coil, now place the pinned side under the presser foot. Make sure the coil fits into the groove under the presser foot. Push the handwheel slowly to see if the needle clears the presser foot.
- If yes, continue to push the handwheel to sew along the zipper as you remove the pins as you get to them to avoid sewing over them. Once you get to the pull of the zipper, use backstitches to lock the seam.
Turn to Sew the Second Side
Here you repeat the above steps as for the first side.
- Place the zipper on the fabric’s right side edge to finish the seam with the pull side down.
- Measure to ensure it is correctly placed like for the other side.
- Back to the machine and continue to sew side two as you did with side one.
Note: If the seam intersects the seam holding the invisible zipper, like in the waistline of a dress, ensure to match the seams carefully when pinning.
Stitch up the Remaining Seam
Now that the invisible zipper is sewn in, finish up by closing the seam.
- Close the zipper to the end.
- Align the zipper and seam allowances’ top edges where the zipper is sewn, just like matching seams.
- Use pins to match the seams properly.
- Once the regular zipper foot is attached to the sewing machine, put the fabric in place below the presser foot then align the needle for stitching from the bottom of the invisible zipper.
- Sew through the seam line to the end of the invisible zipper.
- With your regular foot on your sewing machine, finish sewing the seam. Start stitching thirty centimetres from where the zipper stitches end and expect it to be fiddly as the zipper’s bulky will feel bulky but sew to the end.
Your invisible zipper is complete, and you can sit back and smile for a job well done. Close the zipper to the top and back down to ensure it is complete without errors. Cut all hanging threads, and you have a neatly sewn zipper. The seam is ideal for closing cushions, skirts, dresses, and tops because it is more potent than regular zippers.
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