PRACTICE REFASHION: JUST ZIPPING AROUND
I’m a big fan of zippers. When I successfully added a zipper to a plain black T-shirt almost a year ago, I’ve been meaning to add more zippers to more shirts that need a little jazz or something extra. One of my big projects is adding a zipper to an Angry Birds hoodie because I love zipped hoodies. I bought the no-zip hoodie because I love Angry Birds and I couldn’t ignore the clearance price. I’m a happy girl when wrapped in a super big hoodie.
Before I tackle the Angry Bird hoodie project, I figured practice wouldn’t hurt me. I had a few extra zippers in my stash, and I had some shirts that needed jazz. I picked two of my favorite T-shirts: my Vikings tee and my RIP Pluto tee. Both tees were perfect test subjects to practice my zipper attachment and a new cinching method because I just wear them around the house after work or over the weekends when I’m running errands or cleaning.
When I added a zipper to my simple black tee, I followed super easy instructions from a blogger who turned a no-zip hoodie into a zipped hoodie. Do you think I could find the blogger when it came time to work on my tees? Nope. Not at all. After quickly reviewing instructions and tutorials from other bloggers, I decided to rely on my memory (read: wing it). Good news: my Vikings tee now has a zipper. Bad news: the “wing it” method is far from perfect and can be frustrating.
Basically, I pinned the pulled up zipper to the desired area on my tee and simply sewed the zipper in place. I faced some minor difficulty during the sewing part despite taking my time and trying to sew straight. Once the sewing part was complete, I turned the tee right side out and found the top of the zipper. Using the zipper as a guide, I simply cut the tee in line with the center the zipper. Sounds easy, right? However, only I could have issues cutting a simple straight line.
When I added a zipper to my black tee, the knit fabric curled nicely near the zipper and I didn’t need to fold or hem anything. My haphazard cutting prevented the nice curl, forcing me to think of creative ways to make the area neat and nice. So a little extra time – and patience – was needed to make the zipper area acceptable to me. Lesson of the day: I needed practice before “winging it” on a nicer shirt.
SIDE NOTE: This year, I’ve been using my phone more and more for taking pictures because of its convenience. I already have the phone with me, and I just have to push the camera icon to have the camera ready. And when I’m bored or have extra time on my hands, I have been messing around the edit features and have taken advantage of the border or frame feature. In a previous post, I’ve been pretty pleased with some of the photos.
I snapped and edited photos of this project during the first stage. But then the camera phone creators decided to update the feature, rearranging some buttons and giving me completely new borders! Hello! May I please have the old frames in order to give all the pictures for this particular project the same border? Please? No? Argh! Fine. I guess I can cope with the updated changes, but I have the right to complain. I just hate inconsistencies. SIDE NOTE DONE.
To avoid adding a zipper to my Pluto tee, I decided to try the cinch method. As much as I love baggy tees that hide my fat curves, I’m not a big fan of the long length. When I read a tutorial about the cinch method, I thought that might solve the length issue. One way to find out … I cut a piece of scrap fabric into a square and pinned it to the inside of the shirt (bottom left). I simply sewed three separate lines from top to bottom on the square.
The first line was near the left edge of the square. The second line stitched in the middle. And the last line near the right edge. Then I ran a white shoelace through the two open tunnels created in the square. The shoelace went up the right tunnel and down the left tunnel. To cinch the area, just gently pull on the two ends of the shoelace. Voila! Because I used a small square, the cinched area wasn’t very long.
So, I placed another square of scrap fabric above the first square and sewed three straight lines on the second square. For future reference, use a rectangle piece of fabric NOT a square piece. I re-ran the shoelace through both of the squares and cinched it. PERFECT! I love the cinch method, and I love how the cinch turned out on the Vikings tee. All I need to do now is shorten the shoelace to a more appropriate length.
Luckily, my amazingly intelligent husband has the supplies to make an anklet – the plastic thing at the end of a shoelace. Yay! I don’t even care if the material black instead of clear or white. Whatever. I think a black anklet will add some zing to a white shoelace. Once I create new anklets, my Vikings tee will be complete! Yay! Now I can start my second practice round with a zipper and cinch on the RIP Pluto tee, which will have its own post.
Categories: Jennifer Elliott