I made some shorts last year, quite some time ago now, from a commercial pattern. A Simplicity I think it was. Not to speak ill of the large pattern companies, but well, they clearly assumed I knew how to sew a fly front zipper and that therefore they barely needed to bother showing it in the instructions. This is all it said:
“Install fly front zipper to center front of shorts.”
I battled with that project and used my seam ripper more times than I care to remember. Their tiny illustrations were cryptic and the sewing pattern instructions far too brief.
I got there in the end, but it certainly put me off trying it again for a good long time.
Fast forward to today and I'm designing a skirt. I know exactly the sort of skirt I want to make. I had one just like it years ago and wore the thing until it fell apart, so I wanted to make a pattern just like it. Except it had a zipper at the center front – horror! My stomach turned over at the very thought of it.
Not to be deterred, I pulled out those shorts, get back to work and have mastered this new skill at last. Looking back, I don't know why I found it so hard – probably just the terrible instructions. I think its probably the easiest zipper to add if you are fairly new, because its hidden so if its a little wonky if your stitches aren't as perfect as they should be – no one will even see it.
Not unless they have their face right next to your crotch – in which case they probably know you well enough not to worry about your uneven stitching!
How to sew a fly front zipper
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You can do it!
See – it's just a series of a few very simple steps. All easy enough to do, no need to sew absolutely perfectly. Just carry them out in the right order and you can easily sew a pretty neat fly front zipper in your pants, skirt or shorts.
Now I am confident in sewing this zipper, I need to get to work on that skirt. That pattern's not going to draw itself! There will be a new skirt pattern coming up soon – the ‘On Safari Skirt' and I think you'll love it. It was my favorite skirt of all time, and now it's my favorite pattern too.
And now there is no need to be deterred by that fly front zipper – you can do it. Maybe practice first like I did and you'll soon be confident enough to try out the pattern. When learning a new skill, you can always practice on scraps first before using that new skill on your real project. No one ever does it all right first time, and practice makes perfect!
There are lots more sewing tutorials and skills you can learn over on the Sewing Tutorials page. Go take a look and try something new today!