All About Zipper Feet – Sew A Skirt Series

Welcome to Episode 6 in the How to Sew A Skirt Sew-along series.  The subject for today is:  All about Zipper Feet

How to Sew A Skirt. Beginners tutorial series covers fabric, patterns, cutting out, darts, zipper, lining, hems and more. You can totally learn to sew from this set of tutorials - from So Sew Easy.

What do those Zipper Feet do?

If you plan to sew any kind of woven garment you will usually need to include a closure of some sort to allow you to get it on and off.  Usually a dress or skirt will have a zipper.

There are three basic types of sewing machine zipper foot.

  1. The standard fixed zipper foot that may have come as standard with your sewing machine.  (left)
  2. The adjustable zipper foot. (middle)
  3. An invisible zipper foot.  (right)

Zipper feet explained - all about xipper feet and when you would use them. Part of the Sew A Skirt beginners tutorial series from So Sew Easy.

All zipper feet allow you to sew one side or the other and get your stitches up close to the teeth of the zipper.  You might sew on the outside rather than the center of the foot.  Let's look at each of them in more detail.

Standard Zipper Foot (left)

May come as standard when you buy your sewing machine.  The fixed zipper foot has a little notch on either side for your needle so you can use it left or right-handed to sew either side of your zipper tape.  Best used for regular zippers with the teeth visible on the outside.  This is my least favorite foot because you have to move it to the left or the right and so the pressure from the presser foot is always off-center one way or the other and I find the fabric doesn't feed through so well and the foot doesn't always sit flat to the zip and fabric.  It will work if this is the only one you have.

Adjustable zipper foot  (middle)

The most versatile of the three.  The adjustable zipper foot has many applications and can be used to sew almost any type of zipper.  Also good for top-stitching and sewing in areas where the regular foot might be too wide.  The foot can be positioned left or right, and you can adjust the positioning of the needle to exactly where you want it to be to allow for very close stitching.

You can also use the adjustable foot with an invisible zipper – simply flatten the zipper teeth as you sew just in front of the presser foot to sew as close as possible to the zipper teeth.  If you don't have an invisible zipper foot, this one can work instead.

Invisible zipper foot  (right)

In some ways, the least versatile because it can only be used for invisible zippers.  However, if you give this foot a try you will love it!  Sews invisible zippers with ease, again using a left or right hand channel and creates a beautifully close stitching line which will make your zippers truly invisible from the outside.  Centers the pressure from the presser foot and uses a central needle position so feeding through goes smoothly and accurately too.  Well worth adding to your sewing toolbox.

Zipper feet explained - all about xipper feet and when you would use them.  Part of the Sew A Skirt beginners tutorial series from So Sew Easy.

How to use your Zipper Feet

In the next post, I will be showing you a step by step photo tutorial for how to sew an invisible zipper into our skirt project.  

Our next steps

A quick recap of what we have completed so far –

  1. Overview, tools and equipment and choosing your fabric
  2. Drafting your custom fit pattern, and all about ease and seam allowances
  3. Cutting your fabric and pattern matching
  4. Marking darts perfectly
  5. Sewing darts perfectly
  6. All about zipper feet

Join me soon for the next step in our Sew A Skirt series – Sewing an Invisible Zipper.

If you want to know when the next post in the series is published, do sign up for the newsletter to get it right into your inbox.

How to sew an invisible zipper.  Part of the Sew A Skirt beginners tutorial series from So Sew Easy.

If You'd Like To Support Our Site

If you want to help us continue to bring you a wide selection of free sewing patterns and projects, please consider buying us a coffee.  We'd really, really appreciate it.

Tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to All About Zipper Feet – Sew A Skirt Series

  1. Marilyn I Elliott says:

    Where did you get the universal zipper foot? When I looked on Amazon it said it was a Singer product. Is this type foot available on other brands of machines.

  2. Roch says:

    Thank you for the basic refresher on zipper feet with clear explanations. If you donot routinely use them, you sorta forget and almost go at it backwards.
    Just wanted to add: I had lent out my zipper foot and live out of town. The local big store was sold out, but the knowledgeable salesperson told me to use the quarter inch seam foot. I did. It took a longer time to measure, prep and pin and carefully and slowly sew. But she was right! It did work.
    Bc there are more layers and thickness, it helps to loosen the tension when you sew a zipper.
    You donot want your stitching too close, so the zipper does not catch in the fabric.

  3. Pingback: Spring Tulip Skirt - FREE SEWING PATTERN - Sew Different

  4. Adina says:

    I have a zipper foot .. and I have been too scared to use it! Great post … I cant wait for the next one!!

  5. Irene Valle says:

    I love my zipper foot and I was planning to buy an invisible one, but now, thanks to you, I’m craving n adjustable zipper foot!!!
    MammaNene @ SergerPepper

  6. Great post! I am going to share it on my facebook page!!! Thanks for sharing this information and helping us all get beyond the fear of zippers!

  7. Jenn says:

    I bought a zipper foot a while back but I’ve never used it because I was so intimidated by it! But this makes it look easy!

  8. Ah, I could have used this post a couple weeks ago when I was crying over having to install a zipper in a giant floor pillow! I was def using that standard zipper foot, and I agree – it gave me so many problems. It was just too wide. Live and learn, I guess.

    • Deby Coles says:

      Oh dear, yes I’m not a big fan of that regular zipper foot myself – its too wide! The back bit sticks out wider than the front so it still doesn’t get in as close as I would like to my zipper. But your pillow looks great and a good idea to get all that fibrefill for a good price. Thanks for sharing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *