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This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: nosheteria
Date: 04-26-2005, 08:22 PM (1 of 5)
I'm working on a dress with a zipper up the back, what is the best way to sew in a zipper. I've tried the basting method, then sewing in the zipper, but as a beginning sewer, my seams are not always straight. Any suggestions? Thanks.
User: nosheteria
Member since: 04-05-2005
Total posts: 3
From: DorothyL
Date: 04-27-2005, 07:09 AM (2 of 5)
You may not want to hear this but my suggestion is you try real hard to get that seam straight with long stitches then try putting the zipper in.
Straight cutting and straight seams really do matter. Maybe you could practice on paper with lines drawn on it.
User: DorothyL
Member since: 12-09-2002
Total posts: 3883
From: smessier
Date: 04-27-2005, 12:01 PM (3 of 5)
This might sound bad but I hate to baste!
I'm a lazy sewer, but a decent one.

When I put a zipper in I pin it VERY carefully with all the pins going the same way...the pointy part facing the direction of the sewing. (Does that make sense?) I mean that I sew into the point of the pin...this makes it easy to remove them as I reach them. So one side of the zipper has the pins facing up and the other side has them all opposite. I go very slowly and use the zipper as a guide. I usually have the leg or arm of the zipper foot..the part where it attaches to the machine...resting gently along side of the zipper. I rarely have a problem with crooked seams using this method.

Of course, I have had lots of years perfecting my lazy sewer methods, so maybe I did have crooked seams in the beginning!
User: smessier
Member since: 09-03-2004
Total posts: 114
From: mommydionne
Date: 04-27-2005, 08:39 PM (4 of 5)
masking tape.... tape your zipper in and mark a line to sew down with the masking tape, or painters tape, make sure it won't gum up your fabric (ie works great on twill, not great on satin)
my hubby laughed his guts out the first time he saw me do this but it works great, especially for fly front pants!!
User: mommydionne
Member since: 01-08-2004
Total posts: 838
From: LeapFrog Libby
Date: 04-28-2005, 11:41 AM (5 of 5)
Years ago, my dear MIL took a how to sew course at a community college and they taught her to put strips of scotch tape over the zipper about 3 or 4 inches apart all up and down the length.. (no basting or pinning). I've been doing them that way ever since.. I do start at top down on both sides. (or bottom up on both sides) that way there is no puckering anywhere on the zipper..
Sew With Love
User: LeapFrog Libby
Member since: 05-01-2002
Total posts: 2022
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