Saturday, February 12, 2011

How to make your zipper line up! It's magic!

It is not hard to make your zipper line up! It looks so professional with seams on both sides of the zipper meet and everything looks perfect. Here is a trick to make that happen. You can repeat this for how ever many seams you have on either side of your zipper, you can even use this technique if you have designs on the sweater front you want to meet up, just pick something on the design and mark it on the zipper tape.

1) Take the front pieces where you will be installing the zipper and lay them flat on a surface so that the raw edges are facing each other. Line up all the seams that will need to be lined up when the zipper is installed.

2) Keeping the zipper zipped up, lay it down along the sweater where it will be sewn, right side down. (I realize my zipper is right side up but do what I say not what I do!) Line up the bottom of the zipper with the bottom of the sweater according to where you want it to be sewn. Mark on the zipper tape exactly where each seam from the sweater meets the zipper tape, make sure to mark it on both sides of the tape.

3) Unzip the zipper and sew each side to the respective side of the sweater, right sides together, making sure to meet each marking from step #2 with it's respective seam.

4) Zip up the zipper and have a look to make sure that the seams line up on either side of the zipper. You can rip out the zipper and fix it if they don't - but if you followed your markings carefully it should be fine.

5) Topstitch your zipper.

Enjoy your perfectly lined up zipper!!

Welt Pocket Tutorial - It is not as hard as you think:)

I too was afraid of welt pockets but I thought I would tackle them with this fabulous sweater jacket from Ottobre - #16 Ottobre 3/10 Peggae Zippered Sweat Jacket to be exact.

Here is a pic of the finished product:

The instructions in this particular Ottobre are a little sparse and inappropriate because they show pictures for a welt pocket facing down instead of to the side, they also neglect to mention which way to make the pocket face. Meaning that the pocket needs to go towards the zipper so that when you put your hands in they can face each other inside their respective pockets. So hopefully I can shed some light on these poor instructions.

Welt pocket instructions:

Make sure to have your iron handy and press when necessary to make things lie flat and nice.

1) Cut out two rectangles for the interfacing. I actually used scraps of woven fabric, I serged the edge to prevent fraying. I used the welt pieces as a guide for the size of the interfacing since there was no pattern provided for this piece of interfacing. Just make sure it extends beyond the pattern markings for the pocket provided on the body of the sweater. Fuse it on to the wrong side of the sweater front with a glue stick. I also serged around the edge of the inner pocket piece because I couldn't do that after sewing it in and I don't like the look of unfinished edges in a finished garment.

 2) Here are the pocket welts with the markings transferred from the pattern pieces (NOTE: add a seam allowance to the top and bottom of the welt pieces but NOT to the edges). I also transferred the welt markings to the front sweater pieces. Both sets or markings are made on the right side of the fabric.

3) Fold the welt pieces in half, lengthwise, wrong sides together and pin and sew them to the markings on the right side of the front sweater piece. Line up the raw edges of the welt pieces with the center marking on the sweater piece. Stop sewing at the beginning of the seam allowance at the top and bottom of the welt pieces.
4) Here is the wrong side of the sweater front with the seams from step #3. Draw with a fabric marker marking the cutting lines for the welt pocket.  You will cut up the middle of the pocket (don't cut the welt pieces which you sewed in #3) and then cut diagonally towards the seams from #3 (don't cut your stitching!!).
5) Clip along your markings - don't cut your stitching!!!
6) Turn the welt piece inside so that the raw edges are on the wrong side of the sweater piece. Push through all the corners to leave a nice finish on the right side.
6) Take the outer pocket piece (the smaller pocket piece) and lay it with the right side facing the wrong side of the sweater piece with the rounded part facing up towards the top the sweater. This is NOT how it will be when the pocket is finished, this only helps you line it up properly to sew the seam. The reason this is confusing is because you want the right side of the pocket to be facing the inside so that when you put your hand in, it touches the right side of the fabric. Now pin along where the pocket piece meets the welt piece and sew this seam. Don't go past the welt piece when sewing. Don't catch any other fabric when sewing.
7) Here are my pin and seam from the instructions in #6. I have folded the sweater piece down so that I don't catch any of the other fabric in my seam.
8) Now here you can see how I have folded the pocket piece down so that the rounded piece is towards where the zipper will be. This is how the pocket will lie in the finished sweater.
9) Fold the welt piece to the back to reveal the tiny triangle from when you cut the welt pocket open. Sew along the bottom, flat, portion of the tiny triangle. Don't go past the corners of the triangle. This sews the top and bottom of the welt pocket closed.

10) Go to the right side of the sweater and topstitch ONLY the long side of the welt pocket where you sewed on the inside pocket piece. Don't topstitch the top or bottom or other side of the welt pocket - we'll do this later.
11) Go back to the wrong side of the sweater. Lay the inner pocket piece on top of the outer pocket piece with right sides together. With the round part towards the top of the sweater, pointing towards where the zipper will be.

11) Fold the sweater down so that you can sew the seam attaching the inner pocket piece to the welt piece to close that side of the pocket. Just sew along the welt piece, not any further. Fold back the rest of the sweater so you don't catch any other fabric in the seam.
12) Now pin and sew the inner and outer pocket pieces to each other to close the rest of the pocket up. Sew from the top of the welt pocket all the way around to the bottom side.

Now baste the bottom and side of the welt pocket to the sweater so it won't shift as you sew the rest of the garment.
13) Turn the sweater to the right side, press and topstitch the remaining 3 welt seams, joining them to the seam you already sewed in step #10.

Congrats you are done!

I hope this helped you complete a welt pocket:)