November 3, 2018

#BLC 2018 (Day 3) - #Faye's Sewing Life: Zipper Installation Information 101...

...zipper installations usually aren't a big issue for me.  Every now and then I have an issue with crooked topstitching of a fly front zipper that happens when I am in a bit of a hurry.  But that's easily remedied by ripping out the stitches and starting over.  CAN'T STAND LOUSY STITCHING ON A FRONT FLY ZIPPER.

The majority of my front fly zippers are really FAUX FLY installations (simple).  I have done the "tailored (more involved - more pieces) fly zippers" on pants several times, and once on my Ginger Jeans that actually turned out very well.  But the faux fly is my default and it works very well for me. It's functional and quick, and besides I have a CHEAT SHEET of the application steps that I keep handy in my sewing area - it's my crutch.  I can actually install the fly zipper without the cheat sheet but have grown accustomed to cheating - what can I say!  I also have a CHEAT VIDEO that I use for invisible zipper applications (here).  
This morning I'm working on RE-INSTALLING a front fly zipper - on a pair of pants that I made several months ago.  Guess I'd call this an alteration then because it involved removing part of the waistband.  I've never worn these pants because something was a bit suspect with my zipper - it was pooching out - and that will never do.  Who wants to wear a pair of pants and constantly look down at a zipper problem all day long???

  • Keep a good stock of zippers in basic colors, sizes and types on hand.  (I usually buy 9, 14, & 22 inch)
  • I ALWAYS interface zipper areas, both sides
  • For zippers in pants or skirts, I ALWAYS use a zipper that is longer than needed.  If my project calls for a 7" zipper I always use a 9" zipper instead and then cut the excess off at the top.  I learned this from Sandra Betzina's Power Sewing book. (lots of little sewing gems in this book). 

  • When installing a back skirt or pant zipper of any type interface at least 2 inches past the zipper installation area.  This helps prevent the little pooch at the bottom of the zipper that we all hate that happens in that area.  (Found this information on a blog long ago, but cannot remember where).
  • Make yourself a front fly topstitching template.  I made one from a stack of fusible interfacing so it's flexible and can actually be pinned to the fly area so I just stitch right beside it to get perfect topstitching (99% of the time).😊
  • If you have a problem with zipper installation, find yourself a CHEAT SHEET OR CHEAT VIDEO.  No shade, no shame!!!


  1. Great post Ms. Faye! Zippers are a problem for a lot of people (including me in the beginning!) Now, I’ve become so comfortable with installing them that I create places for them in jackets, pants etc. I find Wonder Tape on hand at all times is essential for installing some zippers (as well as other applications!). The only time I’ve used interfacing on a zipper was in my jeans, pants and sometimes skirts. Thanks for sharing all your great information!

    1. Thank you for reading Myra! Where do you find the Wonder Tape - at Joann's???

    2. Oh yes! Sorry I didn’t had that!



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