Exposed zips and invisible ones can make a whole lot of difference to your dressmaking. A lot of the time, you can get away with a straightforward zip fastening. In reality, changing the fastening is a great way to make a pattern more distinctive.
I’ll let you in on a secret: zips give me nightmares. They’re super precise, there’s not much wiggle room and, to top it all off, they usually come in right at the end of the project. In other words, they can make or break it.
And if something can make that much of an impact, it’s worth sparing a moment to consider the options.
Fancy making people wonder where on earth the fastening could be? Standard zips do the job just fine, but invisible zips are kind of magical – even more so when that little marvel of dressmaking comes direct from someone’s dining table.
If you love a challenge or you’re wavering over whether to add a new skill to your repertoire, just think of the loveliness you could achieve: – That beautiful finish. You can’t beat a well-sewn invisible zip for professional-style results, and it’s perfect if you’re set on making a formal dress. – Your silhouette won’t run riot. With the zip fitted flush with the edges, you shouldn’t get any unexpected bits of fabric popping up or rumpling. – You can finally use that attachment. Remember that special invisible zipper foot that came with your sewing machine? At last, you can give it a run!
All that elegance comes at a price, though: – No rushing allowed. Clear the decks and sit down for some in-depth work. This isn’t one to attempt if you’re running up a last minute make. – Test your attention to detail to the limit. Folding this way, that way, pinning and tacking – there’s no avoiding any of it.
Zips To Be Proud Of
But maybe you don’t want your zip to fade into the background. If you want to double up on functionality and detailing with an exposed zip, you’re in for some sewing-table fun: – The choice is yours! Picking a neat silver-coloured zip or a larger-toothed, brass-toned one could make the same skirt an Anthropologie lookalike or vintage-inspired gem. The options are endless. – And speaking of vintage… This is the perfect way to make the most of a cool vintage zip you’ve been hoarding or admiring at the market. For William Gee’s Pot Luck Metal Zip promotion, click here. – Recycling, recycling, recycling. Some patterns I use once, others I just keep on recycling. Putting the spotlight on that perfect zip is an easy way to switch things up, giving an old faithful pattern a makeover. – This trend’s still going. Since making a comeback a couple of years ago, these little guys haven’t budged an inch. If they’re good enough for ASOS, who am I to argue?
On the inevitable downside: – You’re going to need a better zipper. Perhaps not better, necessarily, but when your zip’s an embellishment in its own right, it’s got to be awesome. Choose wisely. – Keep it neat. A statement zip feels less formal to me, but remember your handiwork’s going to be very visible.
My Zip Pick?
I love the look of invisible zips, but after a few wobbly attempts I’ve come to terms with the fact that they’ll never be my forte. And besides, with a whole wide world of haberdashery and my inherited collection of bits and bobs to rummage through, it’s fun to make that essential component into something a bit special.
That’s just me, though. Are you gifted with the finer points of invisible zip fitting, happier sticking to the basics, or do you love adding an extra detail?
Jane grew up in a craft-loving household, and since then has worked with some wonderful designers and makers. Today you'll find her writing about craft and culture (when she's not got a needle and thread or a crochet hook in her hand). She loves nothing more than curling up in front of a film with a project to work on and a hot chocolate to sip.
Made my first purchase for my business, Cathrin Brodie Ltd. Excellent and speedy service, great range of products and competitive prices. One item was missed from the order but that was dealt with and resolved very speedily. I have no hesitation in recommending this business and I will certainly be back!
I was searching for a difficult to find product, Adam from William Gee was incredibly helpful and not only pointed me to the item in stock but also changed the minimum order so it was more appropriate to my needs, thank you that was really excellent! Once ordered the product arrived promptly and as advertised.
Not only do William Gee have an amazing amount of products at great prices their customer experience must be second to none! I placed my order at about lunchtime and it was in my house in Derbyshire by 8.15am the next day! Thank you.
Brilliantly helpful staff, quick to respond to emails and to ship. Helped me find specific items not on the website and very easy to deal with and process.
Will continue to use for future business purchases!
Excellent service - William Gee supplied thread for curtain making that I had struggled to find elsewhere and for a fraction of the price of the few suppliers I had managed to find elsewhere. Delivery was fast and reasonably priced. Would recommend and will be shopping there again. Thank you.
I placed an order for some haberdashery items. They arrived well packed and secure so there was no damage; and, earlier than I expected to receive them. Good quality products, will definitely be ordering again. Thank you very much!
Placed an order online to collect, was ready quickly and they called to tell me so. Through browsing online store it is probably the best stocked haberdashery in the uk, stocking harder to find and a lot of items for designers. Will definatly be using again.
I placed my first order recently and I was very pleased with my purchases. Everything was as described, the quality was outstanding and it was all affordable. Their wide range of haberdashery is the best I've come across. I'll definitely be back for another haul.
I visited WilliamGee store today. I am a new starter in sewing, so I had just a paper with a list of unknown words to me. Effie, the sales assistant, was very helpful, indeed. She explained to me what I needed for and replied friendly to my queries. So, I easily found all I needed and I am happy! I will definitely recommend this place.
Excellent service provided by this family run business. Not only are the prices superb but the delivery time is swift too. I shall be definitely using William Gee again and have recommended them to all of my 'stitchy' friends!
A fantastic place for all haverdashery needs. I've been buying from this company for years. Excellent customer service, responds promptly to any issues. Shopping online is easy, but the shop is always worth visiting.
Placed my first online order with William Gee for my small sewing business. Web site very easy to navigate and use, good quality products and very speedy delivery. Very happy customer, I will be ordering again. Thank you.
Incredible sewing and craft shop, reminds me of long established sewing shops in Manchester growing up in the 80s. It's not a massive shop but they have everything you could ever want at very competitive prices. I also love their bargain bundles and bags.Staff are incredibly friendly and helpful too. I have done both click and collect online and bought from the shop in person, both great experiences but if you're easily tempted I advise the former option.