have never set a zip into a soft furnishings article before or have tried but been rather
disappointed with the end result, then read on! The objective of this feature is to
provide you with a few snippets of sound advice which, when accompanied by some practical
sewing instructions, should help you to avoid common pitfalls and create the impressive
finish you are looking for!
are a regular visitor to our site, you will know that we have a habit of stressing the
importance of careful planning when embarking on any soft furnishings project. I am afraid
this is no exception!
and concealing the zip
will focus our attention on setting a zip into a cushion, since this is the most common
use of zips in soft furnishings. Whether you are making a simple scatter cushion with the zip inserted
across the bottom or centre of the reverse panel; or a more advanced box cushion where the
zip is inserted into the band or welt, many of the same principles apply.
Zips often look unsightly when exposed and
can spoil the overall appeal of an otherwise stunning cushion design. I always use the
same method regardless of the type of cushion and have found that the approach set out in
Yourself Cushions guide really is
the best way to achieve a good finish.
We typically advise
using continuous zip for cushion making, as the colour of the zip
has little importance because it is hidden under a flap of fabric as
shown above. Inserting a glider onto continuous zip can be a bit
tricky, but the set of
simple steps shown in this photo should make it much easier.
Ensure that the zip is fully concealed
under a fold of fabric stitched into the seams of the panel. The zip must also sit flat,
with no puckering in the seams.
One of the visitors to our forum has an extremely useful video
showing how to insert a zip into the rear panel of a cushion which
you can view
here - from http://my.decozo.com
type of zip to use
you make a lot of cushions, then it may well be worth investing in some continuous
zip with separate gliders. These zippers are available by the metre from your local
soft furnisher or upholstery supplier. The zips can be cut to any length and the gliders
are easily inserted before the zip is installed into the article. They come in a number of
finishes and weights for use in any job, light or heavy, big or small.
a supply to hand can be so much better and far less expensive than having to buy a
specific size and colour of zip for each project. And, since the zip should always be
concealed, using a zip in the same colour as your chosen fabric is really not that
you have made scatter cushions before and have tried to set a zip into one of the side
seams, you may well have had some difficulty feeding all the layers through your machine.
If the cushion
has previously been piped, the task becomes even more difficult. As an alternative, try
positioning the zip into the bottom of the back cover with a concealed flap. It is far
easier and you are much more likely to be satisfied with the end result. See the example
Squab or box
When making a squab or box cushion, the
zip is usually inserted along the back edge into the band or welt. Use the same method for
inserting the zip with a flap for concealing the zipper teeth. The flap faces downward and
if positioned near the bottom of the band it will barely be visible.
We have put together some handy tips for
estimating the length and width of the band required, in our Advance Cushions guide. These should
help you to avoid the problems encountered when trying to get the cover to fit perfectly
around the foam pad and make it much easier to insert the pad once the cover is finished.
I hope these tips will help you feel more confident about inserting
a zip and will set you on the right track when planning your next project. If you would like to have a go at cushion making but
feel you need some additional advice and step-by-step sewing instructions to guide you
through the process then read on.
Simply Furnishings has produced two sewing guides providing
all the practical design and sewing instructions you will need when making a wide range of
simple and more intricate cushion designs. You will find our easy to follow instructions
for setting a zip in our first guide TEACHYourself Cushions. Our second guide, TEACHYourselfAdvanced
Cushions assumes that you have
already acquired the basic skills of cushion making and are looking to move on to box,
bolster and squab cushions, using borders, trimmings and other decorative effects,
creating an almost endless array of design variations. It really couldn't be simpler!
Good luck with your sewing and please feel
free to email me with
questions about setting in a zip or any other sewing query. Wendy Molnar
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