Tuesday, June 30, 2015

How-to Sew a Zip in Faux-fur Fabric

Sewing a zip in long pile faux fur fabric is not difficult. However, figuring out how to prevent the pile (long hairs) of the fabric getting stuck in the zipper teeth, took a little longer. My solution was to sew ribbons between the zipper tape and the fabric - it worked perfectly!
 
 

The back story to this unusual 'how-to' was my daughters request for a Tribble costume (I learnt a LOT about Star Trek!). After some discussion (and my inability to figure out how the costume would work), we negotiated that a Tribble toy and a Tribble bag or backpack would do nicely.

The long pile faux-fur fabric that characterise Tribbles was difficult to find and eventually turned up at Minerva Crafts UK, which also has very reasonable postage to Ireland.

The pattern is simply an oval shape with darts in the sides to make the Tribble more 3D.

The ribbon is a stitched cotton ribbon from janemeans. The width of the ribbon is important. A 15mm width ribbon works with standard zips, any wider and the ribbon would overlap at the centre of the zip and make it difficult to open. A narrower ribbon would allow the pile to get stuck.

 
 

 

The steps are straightforward, except to remember that the ribbon is placed between the fabric and the zip and zipper pull must be facing down, towards the fabric.

 

 

 

The ribbon is sewn to both sides of the zipper.

 

 

The ribbon will cover the zipper teeth and prevent the pile of the fabric getting stuck when the zip is used.

 

 

As the backpack was quite a large size, I used two zippers so that it could be opened wide. A carrying strap was attached to cord loops sewn into the top and bottom of the bag. The addition of lining and a zippered pocket made the bag more functional.

 

 
 
 

Another successful make, seen modelled here with a ribbon dress from a Japanese pattern (similar to these) that I sewed a few years ago.

 

 

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