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How to make any length zipper using “by the yard” zippers.

At first glance, by the yard zippers can feel intimidating but they’re actually super easy and convenient. They also come in more diverse colors and selections than the premade zippers you can find at the big box stores. In this tutorial you’ll see just how easy it is to make a zipper.

You’ll need a few items to get started:

  • By the yard (aka “continuous length”) nylon zipper*
  • Zipper pull (aka zipper slide)
  • Scissors or a rotary cutter

*The zippers at idleblooms are all nylon coil zippers, so they can easily be cut by using a rotary cutter or scissors.

Now that you have your supplies let’s make our zipper!

Start by cutting the zipper 1-2 inches longer than the length you need for your project. So if a pattern requires a 10 inch zipper you will cut a zipper piece that is approx. 11-12 inches in length. Cutting a zipper slightly longer than what you need makes it easier to work with. You can trim it down to size after you add it to your project.

Begin by spreading one end of the zipper sides apart about 2 inches. It should look like an upper case letter “Y”.

Next, using scissors or a rotary cutter, you will need to trim about 1/2 an inch off of one side of the zipper.

Adding the Zipper Pull to the Zipper chain:

Now that the zipper is prepped you can add on the zipper pull/slider. To do this, simply slide one end of the pull onto the longer end of the zipper chain as shown in the pictures.

Continue sliding it down until it reaches the shorter side of the zipper.

Now slide the opposite side of the zipper pull onto the shorter side of the zipper chain. This part might be tricky the first couple times you try it. I find it easiest to hold onto the fabric of the shortest side as I slide the puller down a bit.

Finishing the Zipper!

As you slide the zipper further down the chain the small gap between the two zipper chains will even out. Trim off the longer side of the zipper chain to match the shorter side.

Your zipper is ready to be added to your project! YAY!

After doing this process a couple of time you’ll be a zipper making pro. We can’t wait to see what you make with by the yard zippers! Send us a pic of what you make or tag us with #madewithidleblooms

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