There is a new version of this tutorial HERE.

inserting zippers

for this tutorial, i'll be inserting a skirt zipper, but the same process can be used for zippers in hoodies, zippers in bags, and more.

i'm putting the zipper into the back center seam (between the two back pieces). you could also put the zippper into the side seam of the skirt.


first, fold the skirt in half, so that the edges of the back pieces are lined up. the skirt should be inside out. pin along the edges of the skirt as shown.

feeling a little lost? check out the sewing basics or post a question in the forum.

sew along this line. you will want somewhere around an inch of seam allowance on each side. the more the merrier. so remember to take this into consideration when you are cutting out your pieces. use as long a stitch as possible for this.


here's your stitched line.


press this seam open with an iron, so it lays flat.


here is the seam pressed flat, with the zipper laid on top.


pin the zipper in place.


using a zipper foot, begin stitching the zipper down. you can use a straight stitch or a zig-zag stitch for this.


stitch until the needle is just past the zipper stop (indicated by the red arrow). make sure the needle is down (pushed into the fabric). lift up the foot and rotate the fabric so you can sew across the bottom of the zipper.


once it's rotated like so, sew forward and then backward a few times to really secure the end of the zipper.


now that you're on the other side of the zipper, rotate the fabric so you can sew up the rest of it (make sure the needle is down).


now sew up this side of the zipper until you're back where you started.


here we are. secure the stitches by sewing back and forth a few times.


here's the back side of your zipper, all sewn up.


and here's the front. we're almost done.


use a seam ripper to remove the stitches between the two back pieces of the skirt.


stop right before the bottom line of stitches that are securing the zipper.


that's it! now you're zipper is ready for action.


hem the top of the skirt and you're finished.


Back to top