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Brooklyn Hoodie Sew Along: Install the Zipper

Posted by Betsy C on

Here we go! This is going to be one of the easiest zipper installations. The only trick is to ensure the center front does not become stretched and neckline seams, top of pockets, and the bottom bands align on each side- i.e.- one is not higher than the other.
  • First up, sometimes the seam joining the bottom band gets a little pointy. Trim the excess so you are sure to have a straight edge for your zipper applications.
  • Unzip the zipper, face up. I recommend doing this next to the center front edge of your hoodie so you have a good visual and don't get turned around on the next step.
  • Turn the zipper tape to the opposite side and match to the center front. This means that zipper will be face down on the fabric and teeth are pointed away from the center front. Baste or pin in place. Repeat for opposite side. I recommend basting as this allows you to zip the zipper and ensure neckline seam, pockets, and bottom bands are mirrored and level. 
  • Sew the zipper to the center front on each side.
  • Once again, double check your seams. After this point, it will be a lot of work to change if you decide later that it is not up to par. 
This is an example of what I did on the first try. Not aligned (sad face)
How I fixed it: I marked the correct position on the zipper tape (inside and outside) then ripped out the seam of the bad side and repositioned so pocket aligns to mark.
  • Turn the zipper back to the inside. You can press flat or roll the edge a little further out for more zipper coverage. 
  • Here I am trying to roll the edge and ironing it in place, so everything is flat. 
  • Trim away any bulkiness at the bottom band seam
  • Add topstitch along each side of the zipper. Make sure you always start from the top on both sides and sew down. Not one side up, the other side down because you will notice a distortion in the fabric. 

Not so bad, right? 

Next Up 1/17: The hood! 

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  • I think it depends on the base fabric. A french terry could be left with raw edges. This sounds like an interesting project to upcycle a graphic print!

    Betsy on
  • Very good advice on the alignment, I would have skipped that part. Have you seen in a zipper on a hooded sweatshirt with a graphic on the front? Can you leave the edges raw to preserve the graphic?

    Ateaia on

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