Zippity Do Da

I know there are a ton of tutorials all about sewing a zipper on a pillow.  Most tutorials also use a special zipper foot.  I don’t have one and never had, so here’s how I do it.  Start with your cut piece of fabric, laid out, right side up.  Then, place your zipper, right side down, and align the bottom edges.  Leave the last few inches of the zipper open, like this:

Zipper-Tutorial-Zipper-Pinned

Then sew, with your normal foot.  I keep the edge of my foot along the outer edge of the zipper.  Stop just before the zipper pull.

Zipper-Tutorial-Zipper-Sewing

To finish that side, I then pull the zipper up, beyond my stopping point.  I start sewing, back stitch a few, then carry on until I reach the end, back stitching again to lock the threads.

Zipper-Tutorial-Zipper-Half-Sewn

So that’s one half of a zipper.

Zipper-Tutorial-One-Side-Sewn

Lay the fabric and zipper out, right sides still up.  Now, place your backing fabric on top, right sides down.  Pin along the edges, leaving the zipper slightly undone.

Zipper-Tutorial-Last-Zipper-Step

Sew along the outside edge, just as before, stopping before the zipper pull.  Pull the zipper up, then start sewing again.  Now, you’ve got a zipper.

Zipper-Tutorial-Zipper-Sewn

But let’s finish the pillow.  Align the top and sides of your fabric, pinning in place.  I like to sew one side, pivot to sew the top, pivot again to sew half of the last side.  While my zipper is completely closed.  Keeping the zipper closed makes it easier to pin everything together where it should be.

Zipper-Tutorial-Sides-Sewn

If I sewed all three sides with the zipper closed, I’d be stuck with an inside out, unusable pillow cover.  So, open the zipper, then continue sewing the rest of the way down.  Because I’m lazy, I sew over the ends of my zipper with my machine about 20 times, just to lock the ends in.

Zipper-Tutorial-Finished-Pillow

Turn it right side out and put it to use.

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10 thoughts on “Zippity Do Da

  1. I recently put in a zipper, using pretty much the same technique. It worked out way better than the way I was taught years ago. Amanda, I purchased a new sewing machine a few months back and have a lot of “doubles” in pressure feet. I have Singer machines. Pretty sure I have 2 zipper feet…if the shoe fits, I can mail you one!

    1. Hi Teresa!

      Isn’t it way easier?! I learned to sew in middle school and the zipper technique is way more complex.

      I really appreciate your offer, but I’m not sure if the feet would match. I’ve got a Kenmore. And really, I’ve just been too lazy to track one down. 🙂 Thanks though!! You’re so sweet to offer.

      Thanks!
      Amanda

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