Everything You Need to Sew or Replace a Zipper

Instructions, Tips and Tricks

Zippers tend to scare people off. There really is no reason to be afraid of sewing a zipper. There is a way to practice without spending a cent. Before you discard old clothing, use a seam ripper to rip out the zippers, use your iron and spray starch to give them a new feeling and then practice your sewing techniques with scraps of fabric and your "free" zippers.

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    learn about sewing machine zipper feet
    A Collection of Zipper Feet. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    You can't run a sewing machine presser foot over top of the zippers teeth. You need a special sewing machine foot to sew in a zipper. Learn about a zipper foot.
  • 02 of 12
    Coats Invisible Zipper Presser Foot
    Coats Invisible Zipper Presser Foot. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Most sewing machines don't come with an invisible (or concealed) zipper foot but there are plenty of options out there to meet your needs to sew in an invisible zipper. Learn about an invisible zipper presser foot and all the things you need to know to use this presser foot.

  • 03 of 12
    replace a Jeans Zipper
    Making a zipper the correct length. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    Jeans with a broken zipper can be found on clearance racks for almost nothing. Don't let the fancy topstitching scare you off. Replacing a Jeans zipper is not a big deal.
  • 04 of 12
    A Centered Zipper
    A Centered Zipper. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    If your not satisfied with the way a centered zipper application looks when you are done, review this article for directions, pointed and tips to creating a zipper that will be evenly stitched on both sides and something you will wear with pride.
    Continue to 5 of 12 below.
  • 05 of 12
    A Lapped Application Zipper
    A Lapped Application Zipper. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    The zipper commonly found in slacks and skirts is a lapped zipper application. Find how to sew a lapped zipper and tips and tricks to sewing a lapped zipper her.
  • 06 of 12
    The All Purpose Zipper
    The All Purpose Zipper. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    Learn about the various kinds of zippers to know what kind of zipper to purchase when you are replacing or sewing in a new zipper.
  • 07 of 12
    A photo of sewing in an invisible zipper at a sewing machine
    At the Sewing Machine, Sewing an Invisible Zipper. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    No need to fear the unknown! An invisible zipper can actually be easier than other zipper applications... and more comfortable if it's an underarm, side seam zipper. Learning about how they are sewn is the best way to understand something new. Watching it happen in a step by step fashion allows you to learn the process, one step at a time. The photos that accompany these directions will have you sewing in an invisible zipper in no time!

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    Free is my favorite price for SO many sewing needs. Free sewing patterns are great but the next step is to save money on all kinds of sewing notions... you may have a pile of free zippers and economical fabric sources and not even realize it!

    Continue to 9 of 12 below.
  • 09 of 12
    How To Shorten a Zipper
    Sew a Bar Tack on the Adjustment Mark. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    Shortening a zipper to have a zipper the length you want is not a hard task. You'll find step by step directions to shorten a zipper here.
  • 10 of 12

    Sew a Hidden Zipper Video

    Sew a Hidden Zipper Video
    Sew a Hidden Zipper Video. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    A hidden zipper, also called an invisible zipper, is hidden within a seam, without any topstitching on the outside of the garment. This zipper is sewn in differently than a regular zipper but is perfect for many applications.
  • 11 of 12

    Sew a Lapped Zipper Video

    Sew a Lapped Zipper Video
    Sew a Lapped Zipper Video. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    A lapped zipper is a very common way to sew in a zipper but also can be a bit confusing. This video takes away the mystery of sewing in a perfect lapped zipper.
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    A photo of a sewn in invisible zipper
    A Sewn in Invisible Zipper. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed toAbout.com

    This quick article will give you all the pointers you need to sew an invisible zipper and the information to deal with a seam that intersects the invisible zipper seam.