Today I tried to give myself a sewing lesson on including a zipper using the Zip-Up Bag project from Chris Jefferys’ Learn to Sew. This was a lot tricker than I expected. First of all, I don’t have this thing called a “zipper foot,” and secondly, I could not understand the directions for sewing the zipper. I re-read it twice and then looked it up in three other books: Sew Basic, Sewing 101, and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Sewing. Even after all that reading I remained baffled.
Finally, I thought screw it! and just tried to sew it on in a way that made sense, even if it didn’t quite turn out right. I’ll be going to Colorado over Christmas to visit the In-laws and ask for a real lesson then. For now, my “faking it” method worked out.
Excluding the zipper portion, the rest of the directions were easy. I used grey craft felt and red polka-dot fabric for the liner. I almost skipped the extra diagonal bottom seam and the liner, but decided to do them so I could understand those skills for next time.
I really like things made of felt, but there is a lot I don’t know about it. Is it washable? Is there a right and wrong side? At what temperature do you iron felt? Things like that.
I almost forgot to mention my near fatal mistake. When sewing a zipper make sure it is partly open. Mine was closed and I barely remembered it with only two inches to go. Just enough to stop, pull the project out and wiggle the zipperhead down so that it could be turned right-side out once I was finished. Whew!