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Exposed zippers are a fabulous way to add a little edge to your garment, and they’re also super secure – no need to worry about the zipper breaking! But what if there is a seam? In the tutorial below I go over how to install an exposed with with a seam using small lining pieces that act as facings as explained and featured in our Mini Flap Skirt pattern.

Step 1

Lay the back pieces right sides up.

Step 2

This pattern has a little notch to indicate the bottom of the zipper. When adding the seam allowance, make sure to keep this different in center back edges!

Step 3

Cut two small squares each 1 5/8″ × 1 5/8" out of lining. Use a matching colored lining, I used a darker color so you can see it better in pictures!

Step 4

Pin each lining square matching up the corners of the back edge with the square.

Step 5

This is right sides together with the skirt.

Step 6

Using a fabric marking pen (this one disappears with heat) to mark the seam allowances onto the lining/facings. Mark 5/8" down from the notch and 5/8" from the upper/zipper back edge.

Step 7

Stitch from the seam allowance line to the back edge.

Step 8

Backstitch at the edges.

Step 9

Stitch each side.

Step 10

Then clip into each corner right to the seamline.

Step 11

Flip each facing to the wrong side and give a good press – this will also make the markings go away.

Step 12

View from the wrong side.

Step 13

Also press in the allowance (to the wrong side) above the notch where the zipper gets stitched to.

Step 14

Flip back up the facings/linings and pin the lower half of the center back seam below the zipper – pinning from the end of the facings/linings to the hem of the skirt.

Step 15

View of the full seam.

Step 16

Starting at the top of the seam (lower edge of facing/linings) stitch to the hem of the skirt at 5/8" seam allowance.

Step 17

Press the entire seam allowance open and flip down the facing on the wrong side.

Step 18

Secure with a pin to keep down in place and then flip over to the right side.

Step 19

Pin the press side allowance to the zipper tape and match up the finished lower edge of the slit with the bottom of the zipper stop.

Step 20

Working from the right side stitch about 1/8" from the pressed edge starting at the top.

Step 21

Pivot at the base.

Step 22

Then stitch up the other side of the zipper.

Step 23

View of the bottom of the zipper!

Step 24

Depending on the pattern the waistband/waist facing will be sewed up before or after zipper installation.

Step 25

View from the wrong side: If you have a lining, stitch the lining from the skirt hem to the end of the zipper and press allowances to the wrong side for the zipper opening and hand stitching around the zipper from the wrong side.


  • Pinouche_large

    Feb 26, 2019, 02.20 PMby FluffyBottom

    Thanks for this, going to save this and try it on my next skirt. :-D

  • Burdalogo2_large

    Feb 26, 2019, 11.50 AMby Evmorales

    Thanks for this tutorial…so much needed!!

  • El_large

    Feb 17, 2019, 08.00 AMby Ellen Hatteland

    Thanks Meg! This was really helpful! :-)

    • This is a question
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