This Very Important Piece Will Have to Wait

Another failed attempt at inserting the zipper.

This week on the Sew Weekly, the challenge is to finish a project using a very important piece, or VIP (how clever). As I love this painted cotton/silk blend, I’d like to finish this maxi dress so that I could enter it into the challenge (and wear it before summer ends), but I’m on failed zipper attempt number I-can’t-remember-any-more.  From what I can remember, I tried inserting an invisible zipper straight, inserting an invisible zipper using bias fabric techniques, inserting a regular zipper using bias fabric techniques, inserting a regular zipper while carefully pinning the bias section on my dress form (see photo above – I thought this was definitely going to work after a bit of pressing, but no), minimizing the amount of the bias skirt that had to be sewn to the zipper and then using bias fabric techniques…

I like the idea of an invisible zipper in the side seam, so I’m going to give it another go (after another break – I think we need some time apart!).  I also think it’s time I invested in an invisible zipper foot.

As for the ruching, stretching the fabric across the midriff so that the excess ended up in the side seam made all the difference.  Without any need for prick stitching, it looks like the ruching I wanted.  In my eyes, it’s perfect.  The battle for a finished dress really does lie in finishing the zipper.

But, finishing this very important  piece will have to wait.

16 thoughts on “This Very Important Piece Will Have to Wait

    1. Yes, that’s exactly the one I tried. I actually linked to it in an earlier post, but I didn’t want to over link, especially when I was saying I hadn’t gotten the technique to work. Sunni’s suggestions are wonderful! The big difference was that I was only mostly sure I had the end of the zipper marked correctly. I imagine the amount that you gather is key, which is why I tried again using my dress form as a guide for how to pin and gather the dress. I also didn’t use an invisible zipper foot. I admit that I had half a mind to get in the car with the dress and start driving the many, many miles to Sunni’s so that she could walk me through it in person! I’m determined to get it in there, so I’ll keep trying!

  1. Oh no! I’m so sorry about this! I remember when I first tried getting a zipper in a bias garment and it was such a disaster! I saw earlier that you had tried my technique, but it didn’t work! Oh no! Have you considered shortening the zipper insertion area. I realize that you’ll need a zipper for sure, but this does look like an awfully long one and you may not need it to be quite so long, which might make for a “shorter” attempt when you have another go at it.

    The dress is just too lovely to not finish though! Let me know if I could help more! Best of luck!

    1. I have in fact shortened the portion in the bias section to about the limit of my comfort for putting the dress on. Your tips definitely helped, but I’m just not sure I have the balance between amount-of-bias-cut-skirt-that-needs-to-be-gathered and zipper length quite correct. Once I get my confidence back, I’m going to try again with the shorter zipper length, an invisible zipper, an invisible zipper foot, and your gathering techniques. That, or I’ll come for a visit so you can walk me through the insertion in person!

    1. Thanks! It’s a lovely dress. I can’t wait to see me in it, either! But, I don’t want to skimp on getting the zipper in correctly. It’s proving to be a challenge, but a challenge I have time to meet!

  2. Oh, it’s looking great – hope you find a solution for the zipper. I highly recommend an invisible zipper foot – it’s the best foot I’ve purchased after several invisible zips without it – now wonder why I didn’t buy one in the first place.

  3. An invisible zipper foot is not expensive and I highly recommend one!!! I am with you on zippers, for me they either go in like a dream (total luck) or I am forever cursing them and redoing it a hundred times.

    GOOD LUCK!!!!

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