I know, technically the zipper isn’t a secret. You all know it’s there! Nor is it a secret that there’s a hood in our collars, it’ll be a soft roll around your neck. Secret or not, it’s a very cool feature on this jacket. Today we’ll insert the zipper into the collar, so we can get our hoods out when the rain starts coming down.
Note: If you haven’t cut your lining yet, you’ll need to cut at least one collar piece out of lining for today’s sewing step!
Want to catch up on previous Sew-Along posts? Click the links below to read more:
- Join the Minoru Sew-Along: January 16th, 2012! (Find the Sew-Along badge here, too!)
- Why is the Minoru Jacket Pattern Not Suitable for Plaid Fabric?
- Guest Post: Caroline on Sewing Waterproof Outerwear
- Minoru Jacket Q & A
- Fabric Recommendations for the Minoru Jacket
- A Full Bust Adjustment on the Minoru Jacket, Courtesy of Alana
- Sew-Along Speed: How Fast Do You Want to Go?
- My Minoru Jacket Fabric Choices
- Five Ways to Tell if Your Fabric Is Water-Resistant
- Minoru Inspiration: Dots!
- Update: Minoru Sew-Along Starts on Monday!
- The Very First Minoru Muslin
- Minoru Sew-Along #1: Let’s Get Started!
- Minoru Sew-Along #2: Sewing Sleeves and Topstitching Tips
- What is Triple Stitch?
- Minoru Sew-Along #3: Gathering!
- How to Make Your Own Piping
- Minoru Sew-Along #4: Sewing the Hood
- Minoru Sew-Along #5: A Change in the Line-Up and Checking In
Lay your lining, right side down, on top of one fabric collar piece that’s lying right side up. You want them right sides together. Pin around the edges, smoothing out any bumps.
If you’ve marked your zipper opening lines, great! If you haven’t, that’s all right too. I haven’t either. I’ll grab the original pattern piece, lay it on top of the collar, and mark the top and bottom corners of the zipper opening line.
I’ll also mark the centre points of each line.
Then we’ll flip over the pattern piece, and mark the corners on the opposite side.
Marked! I’m going to draw in the zipper placement lines with chalk so they’re easy to stitch. You could use a fadeaway marker as well.
Once the opening is marked, we’ll stitch around the lines. This will make a window for our exposed zipper. Take your collar layers to the machine, and stitch around the opening. If your fabric is loosely woven at all, you may want to use a shorter stitch length. I’d also suggest shortening the stitch length when you get to the corners. This way, when we clip to the corners, our stitching will be strong.
You might want more pins on either side of the zipper stitch line, too!
Here’s what the zipper opening will look like, stitched.
Now we’ll cut it open! Slash down the middle of the opening, cutting diagonally into the corners.
Fold it in half to get the slash started.
Here’s what the opening will look like, slashed and clipped.
And a close-up of the diagonal snips into the corners:
Turn the piece right-side out, pressing around the opening, rolling the lining to the back. If you get puckers at the corners, clip slightly further into the corner stitching.
Take your time and carefully press all around the opening, until you can’t see the lining from the front. You’ll see a nice long rectangular opening, and that’s where we’ll insert our zipper! This is easier to do if your lining fabric cooperates. Cotton, flannel, anything that presses well will be easy to work around this opening.
Note: I forgot to baste around the raw edges. Oops. Do as I say, not as I forget to do! Basting the raw edges together will make it easier to sew the collar to the jacket, sew the hood to the collar and sew the inner collar layer to the outer layer.
Zipper time! So for my zipper, I couldn’t find one in the right length that matched my centre front zipper. I ended up buying two in the centre front length so they’d look the same. Now I’ll have to shorten my zipper.
Because the ends are hidden, I’m not going to do the painful method that involves pulling teeth out with pliers. (But here is an example of how to do that if you wanted to do a much nicer job than me.) I’m going to do a quick-and-dirty stitch across the ends over and over, and trim off the excess. (Do not use your good scissors to cut the end of the zipper off! I’m somewhat embarrassed to show you the hack job I did on mine but here it is, hacked up with some very old scissors.)
If your zipper is the right length, you’ll be able to simply centre it in the opening, leaving a bit of room at the top end for the zipper stop to fit.
Once you’ve got the zipper set under the window opening, pin around the edges. This might be hard to do on some fabrics, pinning through this many layers and the zipper tape. In that case, I’d suggest hand-basting the zipper in place before stitching it securely.
Align the zipper so the pull is on the right side as shown. (If you’re left-handed, maybe you want to have the pull on your left side?)
Last step! We’ll edgestitch around the zipper opening, securing the zipper in place. Use a zipper foot to get nice and close!
That was a lot of work, but doesn’t it look nice? This is the part where it starts to transform from just fabric, to a real jacket. You know that feeling, where before you weren’t sure whether it was going to look any good, and then all of a sudden it starts coming together? For me, this is when it happens!
On interfacing: I didn’t interface the collar pieces for this jacket. I prefer the collar to be soft and relaxed, not stiff and upright. It’s up to you whether you want a stiff collar or a soft collar. If you’re making View B, the hoodless view, you may prefer more structure in the collar because there’s no hood hidden inside. If your fabric is loosely woven, you may want to interface the collar to reinforce the zipper window and stabilize the collar.
I settled on using the layer of the lining to create the zipper window, because I thought it would be the easiest way to cleanly finish the opening. You could try simply slashing the opening and turning the edges under. Or use a piece of fusible interfacing over the opening, stitching it like we do the lining, and then turn it to the inside, fusing it in place.