Monday, 2 June 2014

We've Come a Long Way, Baby!

A few years ago there was dread associated with installing an invisible zipper. I longed to learn the secret behind those perfectly hidden invisible zippers I would inspect in ready-to-wear garments. I was at the time sewing with one of those plastic invisible zipper foots. Big mistake. 

Invisible zippers and I have come a long way. Since that time, I have mended my ways and picked up a few tricks along the way. First you'll need to gather some tools for the job.  

1.  A quality invisible zipper foot. Invest in an invisible zipper foot specifically for your sewing machine. Trust me, those plastic ones you can find in fabric stores are not worth the time or expense.  

2.    Regular zipper foot.  

3.    Invisible zipper.  

4.    Thread.  

5.    Scissors for clipping loose threads if you need. My latest machine has a built in thread clipper.   

6.    Basting Tape.  

7.    An iron.  

8.    And of course, your garment.  

The first thing I do is finish the seam of the garment where I plan to insert the invisible zipper. I usually finish the edge using my serger.  

Then I prep my zipper by pressing the coils open. Don't skip this step! I found that it makes a world of difference. Next, I tape the edge of my finished edge with a length of basting tape nearly matching the length of the invisible zipper. I don't use pins. The basting tape works like a charm and dissolves during laundering. You can find basting tape in various widths. I find that the longer the zipper the wider the basting tape I like to use.  

Using a quality invisible zipper foot meant for your specific machine, go ahead and stitch each side of the invisible zipper in place. I start at the top with a locking stitch and work my way down. I only use the regular zipper foot to stitch the centre back pieces below the zipper. Using the regular zipper foot allows me to sew close to the bottom edge of the zipper.  

And there you have it, my stress-free method for sewing an invisible zipper.  


  1. Great advice given here! My Janome invisible zipper foot is definitely my best friend, with it's plastic counter part long gone from my sewing room ... J

    1. Thanks Judith! The invisible zipper foot and basting tape are my must-haves for this task.


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