Zippers are a scary topic for many crocheters! In this video, Brenda shares many techniques for working with zippers, from shortening them, to pinning them, to stitching them in place.
First, Brenda demonstrates how to make a separating zipper into a non-separating zipper. She begins by showing us how to fit the zipper into a zipper opening, pinning it in place to determine the proper length. Then she marks the zipper and removes it from the opening. She then shows us how to stitch the bottom of the zipper closed, so that the remainder of the zipper tape can be cut off. Brenda explains that the same technique can be used for metal zippers as well.
Sometimes we need our zipper to be able to separate, for example when we are adding a zipper to a cardigan. This means that if we shorten the zipper, we will need to shorten the zipper from the top. Brenda walks us through the process of shortening a metal zipper from the top. She uses pliers to yank each tooth off of the tape, one at a time. Then Brenda demonstrates how to crimp a metal top stop onto the zipper tape.
Next Brenda shows us how to shorten a nylon zipper from the top. Instead of just pulling on the teeth, using wire cutters, she shows us how to cut the tip (or head) off of each tooth, then we are able to crack each tooth, making it easier to remove from the zipper tape. She then demonstrates attaching a black top stop to the zipper tape using pliers.
Brenda shows us how to finish pinning our zipper into the zipper opening. She pins the tape to the opening, leaving enough space between the zipper teeth and the top edge of our fabric. This space is necessary, to allow the zipper pull to pass along the edge, and not get stuck in the crocheted fabric. Brenda demonstrates how to stitch along the top edge of the fabric, with the right side of project facing, through the zipper tape. She uses a back stitch just below the top “v” shape along the top edge of the crocheted fabric. Next, Brenda shows us how to whip stitch the edge of the zipper tape to the inside of the project.
In order to completely hide the stitching from view, Brenda shows us how to create a shallow crocheted “pocket” in which to insert the zipper tape. She demonstrates this technique using a Half-Double crochet stitch, working under just the front loop. After working across the row, she turns her work and crochets across the un-used back loops, creating a shallow pocket for the zipper tape. Brenda notes that a taller stitch would create a deeper pocket. This technique creates a flawless finish- you cannot see any of the zipper seams- they blend right into the crocheted pocket fabric!
Knowing how to shorten zippers, and how to seam them into your crocheted projects will boost your confidence, and allow you to finish all those zippered-projects with ease!