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Tips & Techniques > Shorten a jean/metal zipper

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Posted by: Passion4Sewing
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Member since: 9/21/08
Reviews: 239 (tips: 30)
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Posted on: 1/31/11 11:49 AM
Review Rating: Helpful by 1 people   Very Helpful by 4 people   
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I have found an aid in shortening jeans zippers. I could just install them and let the top fall where it will and cut off the excess, but I like to put at least one stop at the top. It looks and works more nicely.
I use nippers to pull the teeth off the area where I will shorten. I mark where the zipper will end and remove the teeth, plus a couple extra where I will replace the stop. I use the nipper to open the top stop. Previously, when I squeeze nippers to reapply the zipper top stop, sometimes it will jump and maybe I will or maybe I won't find it again on my floor. Very frustrating to spend time on my hands and knees looking for the little bugger.
I have been using this 1/4" leather tape for all kinds of things. But I think I like this use best. (The leather tape is a double-sided tape used for hemming leather. It is MUCH stickier than the normal double-sided sewing tape. CAUTION- if marking a placement, say, a patch, don't put where your needle will go through it. It gums up the needle something fierce!)
I cut off about 1/8" of the tape and apply where the stop will go, placing it so you can wrap the zipper tape. Take the backing off and wrap. Stop crimped on over tape No more leaping zipper stops!
Another pic of nippers

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SandyinMO said... (2/4/11 10:04 AM) Reply
Thanks for the link to Wawak. I'm going to take some time to check out their catalog.
Patti B said... (2/1/11 5:10 PM) Reply
Very interesting tip -- thanks!
Passion4Sewing said... (2/1/11 11:26 AM) Reply has zipper pliers for a reasonable price. Here's a link: zipper nippers
Passion4Sewing said... (2/1/11 11:11 AM) Reply
Sandy, they do make nippers just for zippers, but I found these inexpensive ones I got from Big Lots (or Lowes) work just as well. There are tile nippers, too. I'm not sure what these were made for. They're with specialized pliers. When my camera batteries get charged, I will add a picture with closeup of nippers.
SandyinMO said... (2/1/11 8:54 AM) Reply
Tell me more about the nippers. It this the job they were intended for or do they other functions as well. I'd like to get some because I've wanted to remove teeth from zippers but could never figure out what tool to use.
Passion4Sewing said... (2/1/11 8:42 AM) Reply
I've always wondered why my closeups were fuzzy :-) Thanks, deesews!
Catbird said... (2/1/11 8:21 AM) Reply
That's an excellent idea! And for an added bonus, I learned about "leather tape," something I wasn't aware of. I suppose that would be helpful for hemming faux leather, too-? Thank you, Passion4Sewing. Deesews has added a couple of great tips about using the camera for closeups. I love that macro mode!
deesews said... (2/1/11 0:16 AM) Reply
This sounds very interesting, but I can't quite make out your photos. Here are a couple of tips that might help: Set your camera on macro (the flower). This is for focusing on close objects. Try using the delayed shutter release. This way, you would press the button, but the camera would be completely still by the time the photo was taken. Many thanks for your tip!
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