How to Sew an Invisible Zipper

Step-by-Step Instructions With Photos

  • 01 of 08

    What Is an Invisible Zipper?

    A photo showing how to press the zipper tape flat to sew in an invisible zipper.
    Press the Zipper Tape Flat. The Spruce / Debbie Colgrove

    An invisible zipper is a zipper that is hidden within a seam. The only part of the zipper that is seen is a slender zipper pull at the top. An invisible zipper is not sewn in the same manner that regular zippers are sewn. With an invisible zipper, you do not need to bother with straight topstitching on the finished zipper.

    Continue to 2 of 8 below.
  • 02 of 08

    Materials You Will Need

    To sew an invisible zipper, you will need to have several materials handy: 

    • An invisible zipper that is a close match to the fabric you are using
    • An iron and ironing board
    • The item the zipper will be sewn into without the seam being sewn
    • An invisible (or concealed) zipper foot for your sewing machine
    Continue to 3 of 8 below.
  • 03 of 08

    Prepare the Zipper for Placement

    Read the instructions that accompany your invisible zipper and zipper foot. Most steps are the same.

    • Open the zipper
    • Thoroughly press the zipper tape by laying the open zipper with the zipper pull side down on the ironing board
    • Use the point of the iron to get under the coils and iron the zipper tape flat
    • If needed, press the fabric where the zipper will be sewn into the seam


    Continue to 4 of 8 below.
  • 04 of 08

    Get Ready to Sew the First Side

    A photo showing the details of preparing the first side of an invisible zipper.
    Preparing to Sew the First Side of an Invisible Zipper. The Spruce / Debbie Colgrove

    With the zipper still open and the zipper tape flat, sew the first side.

    • Lay the zipper face down (zipper pull side down) on the right side of the fabric
    • Bring the zipper tape into the area where you will be sewing in the zipper
    • Measure the seam allowance from the edge of the fabric to the zipper coil. Your goal is for the seam allowance to stay consistent with the pattern and the length of the zipper.
    • Pin the zipper tape in place, removing the pins as you sew (do not sew over the pins). If you are not comfortable removing pins as you sew, take the time to hand baste the zipper tape into position.
    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08

    Sew the First Side

    A close up photo of sewing an invisible zipper with an invisible zipper foot
    At the Sewing Machine, Sewing an Invisible Zipper. The Spruce / Debbie Colgrove

    Set up your sewing machine with your invisible or concealed zipper foot.

    • Using the hand wheel, gently bring the sewing machine needle down to confirm that your needle will clear the presser foot
    • Place the zipper coil under the zipper foot so that the stitching will be right next to the zipper coil on the zipper tape
    • Sew the entire length of the zipper in place, removing the pins as you come to them, without sewing over them
    Continue to 6 of 8 below.
  • 06 of 08

    Sew the Second Side

    A photo showing how to prepare to sew the last side of an invisible zipper
    Preparing the Second Side of the Invisible Zipper. The Spruce / Debbie Colgrove

    On the other side, you will basically repeat the same steps as the first side of the zipper.

    • Lay the zipper (pull side down) on the right side of the fabric edge that will create the finished seam
    • Measure and pin in place just as you did for the other side
    • Return to the sewing machine and sew in the second side of the zipper tape, the same way as the first side

    Important to note: If you have a seam that will intersect the seam that holds the invisible zipper, be sure to match the seams.

    Continue to 7 of 8 below.
  • 07 of 08

    Sew the Remaining Seam

    a photo showing how to line up the seam at the bottom of an invisible zipper
    Sewing the Remaining Seam After Sewing an Invisible Zipper. The Spruce / Debbie Colgrove

    Your invisible zipper is sewn in, but now you have to close the seam. 

    • Close the zipper
    • Match the stitching of sewn sides of the zipper, the same way you would line up seams to have a seam line match
    • Pin or baste the matched seams in place
    • Place the regular zipper foot on your sewing machine
    • Place the fabric under the presser foot and align the needle with the stitching at the bottom of the invisible zipper
    • Sew the seam line until you clear the invisible zipper.
    • Place a regular foot on your sewing machine and finish the seam.
    Continue to 8 of 8 below.
  • 08 of 08

    Sew a Seam Finish

    A photo showing a zig zag seam finish on the seam allowance of an invisible zipper
    A Zigzag Seam Finish Being Sewn on the Edge of the Seam Allowance. The Spruce / Debbie Colgrove

    Choose a seam finish to complete your zipper installation.

    Using the seam finish you have chosen, sew the seam allowances of the entire seam, under the zipper and below the zipper, to prevent fraying threads that can jam in a zipper and weaken your seam.