pastille pt. 2: the zipper & lining maneuver

before i show off my lovely finished pastille, i thought i’d show you how to manipulate the lining around the zipper.

for this one, i chose to underline the bodice and line the skirt. now, when i started sewing dresses and was trying to figure out how to put everything together neatly inside and out, i would study books and poke around dresses at shops. then when i discovered sewing blogs and burdastyle, even those who showed the insides of their dresses usually left out the construction around the zipper (probably for good reason!). and that’s what i always struggled with. so, in this post i will show you exactly what i did with the lining around the zipper. it’s a very clean finish, and will hopefully be helpful to somebody.

here is the inside before the zip is inserted.
i choose purple for the underlining to help keep my red from

looking too orange. and cuz it’s fun.

as i mentioned, i underlined the bodice. when you do that, and don’t include an additional lining, your seams will be visible. i’m okay with that on a casual dress such as this. i serge all my seam allowances to keep the raw edges from fraying, but if you don’t serge i highly recommend seam binding. so my underlined bodice is attached to the skirt, then the skirt lining is sewn on. make sure to stop about 1.25″ from the zipper opening. i will want to sandwich the zipper tape between the shell and lining fabric once the zipper is in.

now sew in the zip. i love invisible zips. i think they are the easiest to put in, provided you have an invisible zipper foot. considering you can get one on amazon for $5-$10, there’s really no reason not to have one! for this dress, the zipper is very long, so i will hand baste it in first. believe me, that is a lot of zip to screw up, it’s practically a mile long.

if you baste first, you can easily check to see if everything lines up satisfactorily. on a shorter zip i usually just pin it in place and hope for the best. oh, you did finish your zipper seam allowance first, right? good.

make sure that top zipper stop is 1/8″ down from your seam line at the neck opening. if you like doing a hook and eye at the top (i don’t) align the zipper stop about 1/2″-1″ down. now, stitch it in! i usually do a long stitch, 3-4 mm.

once you have sewn both sides of your zipper, turn your skirt lining in and slipstitch it at the waist seam and down the zipper tape if you wish. fyi: i usually don’t bother sewing down the zipper tape. what can i say, i’m lazy.

on to the neckline facing. you should have left a little unsewn as you came into the zipper opening. now, turn your facing to the outside of the dress (right sides together) and finish sewing the neckline across the zipper

then switch to your regular zipper foot and sew down the side of the zipper.

trim the heck out of that corner then turn it right side out. i trimmed it much more than the picture below shows, so you know.

give it a good press and ta-da! you have a perfectly finished zipper with neck facings and skirt lining!

—lisa g

2 thoughts on “pastille pt. 2: the zipper & lining maneuver

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