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October 2010
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How To Sew A “Lapped” Zipper

          Lapped zippers are typically used for skirts and slacks where the zippers are on the side or center back.  They are not difficult to make when you use the following step by step instructions.

            Sew the garment seam to the point where the zipper will be inserted (A).  Press open the seam allowance for the zipper the length of the zipper tape.

            Place the garment right side up and fold back the left seam allowance (B).  Working on the right seam allowance, slide out and pin this seam allowance ¼” beyond the pressed seam line.  With the zipper closed and right side up, position one edge of the zipper teeth next to the folded extended seam allowance.  Pin the zipper in place.  Using a zipper foot and starting from the bottom of the zipper, stitch close to the folded edge of the seam allowance the entire length of the zipper.

            With the right side of the garment facing up, pin the other seam allowance over the closed zipper so that it conceals the zipper and the other stitching (C). 

            Machine stitch a line parallel to the seam fold and ½” away from the fold, through all layers of the fabric, the zipper tape, and across the bottom of the zipper (D).  This will complete the installation process.

           Next week we will be working with a lapped zipper specifically for shorts or slacks front.

           These “how to” tutorials are an excerpt from our book “Basic Clothing Construction”.   This book is a handy addition to have in your sewing room, so you can refer to the various sewing tips and tutorials at any time

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