Friday, December 25, 2009

Zipper Tip 2

You can buy fabric and patterns at discount prices, but rarely does one find zippers on sale, and invisible zips at full price can seem prohibitive. For this reason, I was delighted to find the local haberdashery store selling a brand at a third of the regular brand price.

Only one colour was available, but I figured no-one else would see that the navy zipper didn't match my white flannelette chemise. I sewed the garment and wore it regularly for 2 months. Suddenly I had a resistent zip pull. Couldn't do it all the way up. Fortunately the zip was set in the side of the garment, so I wouldn't fall out of it if the zip wasn't done all the way up. Life carried on with the zip pull an inch below the summit.

It wasn't long before I realized it wasn't cold weather or zipper rheumatism that was making it unable to complete the climb. Close inspection showed that the zipper tape was disintegrating. My NZ$2 bargain was no bargain after all. Merely cheap.

Left side of zipper

Right side of zipper

I bought a second zip at the same time, but I'm reluctant to test whether it will stand up to the rigours of normal garment life. It will be a fiddly and time-consuming job to replace the chemise zip, and I'm not willing to risk that happening on another garment.

So here's my Zipper Tip #2:
If you want the security of a healthy, reliable zip, get used to paying for the best.

I mentioned the situation to the owner of the store. She was grateful I did so and said she wouldn't be stocking that brand again. According to the label, it sells in New Zealand, Australia, and the USA. The label also guarantees replacement for faulty zips, but that's not going to get my chemise fixed.

Coming soon... Zipper Tip 3 -- Why bother with an invisible zip?

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