Technical puzzlement

Hmmm invisible zipper in a knit.


For your viewing pleasure I give you my second attempt to sew this zip into knit cotton T-shirting.  I’m pretty happy with the zipper insertion itself but very unhappy with the rest of the seam.  Just to clarifty – the fabric is blue, fusible interfacing black, the zipper is pink and its on the side seam.

Now, I need to use a stretch stitch to sew the side seam below the zipper but therein lies my conundrum.  How to get closer to the zipper stitching when I extend it for the seam?  Note – I used a standard zipper foot to get as close as poss with a straight stitch then switched to a general foot to use lightening bolt stretchy stitch.

Aint it ugly?  And my first attempt wasn’t any better, obviously.

Note, I will practise this but I think there’s more than just practice required.  Oh and I’ll test whether I can do a lightening stitch with a zipper foot …. with glasses on in case the needle shatters.  That would remove one of the steps.


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19 Responses to Technical puzzlement

  1. You remind me of year 8 sewing class when I was keen to attach a zipper to my handbag. 🙂
    I got 1 side right, and the other didn’t work, so I gave up on it because the teacher wasn’t keen on my doing it in the first place. Til this day I have some regret I didn’t just go and redo the thing.. glad you’re re-attempting. Keep at it, girl! 🙂

    • Oh no drat that sewing teacher. I hope you have successfully zippered something since though!? I have a memory of a chemistry teacher squashing my mad scientist hopes, but that’s a different story lol. And I’d have made a rubbish mad scientist too.

      Thanks Fati – you know what I’m like anyway. Can’t stop trying to get it just right enough per technique. Stubborn. S’me. 🙂

  2. Pella says:

    I usually use the method in the video CGCouture links to, but some people swear by this one If all else fails I handstitch the awkward bit.

  3. Jo says:

    Maybe you think it looks ugly, but what does it look like from the outside? That’s all that matters to me! I think my latest dress looked no better than this, lol, and I gave it a passing grade 😛 Maybe I’m just not doing well at understanding the conundrum lol 🙂

    • Hey Jo – it looks nasty from the outside too damn as it pulls and puckers at each ‘step’. So I’ve ripped it out and redone it with some hand stitching, which I’m also not so good at on a knit. Still I know what you mean about being fine on the outside even if its not nice on the inside. I’m working on my perfectionist management today let me tell you!

  4. CGCouture says:

    I was also going to suggest hand sewing, though it looks like I’m a bit late to suggest that. I’ve also had decent luck (on wovens anyway) by using the zipper foot and moving the needle to where it meets the old seamline (and you pull the zipper tape ends out) it’s rather complicated to describe, but I found the idea from a zipper tutorial on YouTube.

    • Ello! And thank you. This is the same as my books, which to date have been great but in this I just can’t seem to get the nack of it. Its probably the knit fabric as I have to use a stretch stitch as soon as I’m off the interfacing supporting the zip and I can only use a straight stitch with the zipper foot. Grrrr. The hand sewing thing is the one to try next 🙂

  5. Anne W says:

    I always hand sew the bit between the seam stitching and the zip stitching. Give it a go. 🙂

    • Oh that is good to know. I have several books that happily state the zipper foot works well and show this with pictures but I haven’t had much luck yet. It just isn’t neat enough to my pernickety eyes. Thanks Anne. How’re you going?

  6. amaryllislog says:

    I’m glad to hear you wear glasses when sewing for the same reason I do, safety goggles! But back to the issue at hand…I Have never inserted a zipper into a stretch cotton fabric, this leads to a whole new area of puzzlement! I have no answers, perhaps handsew that area like others have suggested or try your zipper, regular foot combo until you get it to your satisfaction. Sorry I’m of no help, but I’m really sympathetic!

    • I haven’t ever been hit by a flying needle shard but its one of those slightly irrational fears in my pocket! Safety goggles would be within hands reach if I didn’t need glasses to see too !

      I’ll be cracking out the needle and thread for sure, though practice is definitely required as I’m not terribly neat. Still, what are muslins for if not to practice on? And sympathy is greatly valued too BTW 😉

  7. I’d be hand sewing that too. A lot safer! And if hand sewing is good enough for Chanel….. 😉

  8. SewingElle says:

    How about hand sewing that little bit?

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