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Video:Sew a Hidden Zipper

with Susan Nixon

This technique is best for garments that may need a functional zipper, but are made from delicate material. Or, perhaps you simply think a visible zipper is a bit unsightly. Either way, we'll show you an easy way to sew a hidden zipper.See Transcript

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Transcript:Sew a Hidden Zipper

Hello I’m Susan Nixon with About.com and today I’m going to talk about how to sew in a hidden or invisible zipper.

When to Use a Hidden Zipper

You’d want to use this on fancier dresses and places where you really don’t want the zipper to show because when it’s closed, you can’t even tell it’s there. What makes the biggest difference in keeping this zipper invisible is that you have to use the iron to press first. And we want to do this so we can sew as close as we can to the edge of those teeth.

Get Started Sewing a Hidden Zipper

So for this example I’m using different colors of fabric that don’t match my fabric so you can see better. And I want you to know that the trickiest part of the invisible zipper is how to get it lined up to start.

With a folded edge next to the teeth I’m going to show you the double flip. This will get you started right in the correct place at the top of the zipper. So I’m holding the seam to the zipper. My first flip is here; my 2nd flip is just to turn that over. And now the zipper is ready to sew. I’m going to sew right along the teeth.

Sew in the Zipper

So let’s slide the fabric under. I’ve got my zipper foot and my needle here so I’m actually going to turn the wheel and put my needle in right next to the edge of the teeth. Lower your presser foot and to begin let’s just go a couple of stitches forward and then do a little bit of a reverse and sew as close as we can to the edge of those teeth.

After you’ve reversed at the end, you’ll always have 4 threads to cut. Two from the end and two from where you’ve started.

So we have the first side of zipper sewn. Now I’m going to flip this over and I’m going to pull on the tab to zip up this zipper. And look at that. You can see, it’s pretty much invisible for the first side I’ve sewn.

The Second Side of the Hidden Zipper

So now, when I start the 2nd side, I want the top to be in the same location. So I mark the top location at the top of the zipper. We’re going to do the same double flip to get this edge lined up on the right side of the zipper tab. Fold my fabric under about 5/8’s of an inch set it down right next to the teeth of the zipper. I’m going to hold the seam allowance with the zipper tape. I’m going to flip one time, and then I’m going to flip one more time. Now my zipper’s ready to sew. This is the easiest way to find your starting point for the 2nd side of the zipper.

Now I’m on the right side of the zipper foot. So here’s the mark that marks the top of the zipper tape lined up with the top of the dress or skirt either one. I’m going to slide this under.

So now I want to sew with my needle as close to the teeth as I can get and you’ll see the foot actually pushes the teeth over for me. One more time I want to sew in reverse to tie my knot so the threads won’t come undone and cut all 4 threads.

Close the Zipper

Now most of you will think when you go to try and close the zipper, uh oh, I sewed something in backwards. Well you haven’t. Remember those double flips that you did? We’re going to have to flip one back where we started. Grab the zipper at the bottom and just begin zipping. And we get all the way to the top and we can’t even tell the zipper is there.

Now let’s close up the bottom. You’re just going to move everything to the side. Start with a reverse to tie your knot. And then let’s sew forward to the bottom edge. So the zipper is together at the bottom. Now what you’re going to do when you sew the top part of the seam you basically turn that over to the backside and that becomes your zipper stop and you sew right across and your zipper is perfect every time.

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