How to Shorten a Separating or Metal Zipper

Lazies, As you have probably gathered by now, I often sew with zippers. Shortening zippers is a way of life in my studio.  In fact, I usually stock my favorite colors in 22″ length, then shorten them if needed. That way I usually have the color I need in the length I need. I rarely buy zippers in shorter lengths anymore because I can always cut a longer zipper down to the size needed.

I want to share with you a post over at Kathleen Fasanella’s Earlier this week Kathleen posted a nice picture tutorial for shortening a separating zipper.  Her technique is the same method I have been told to use for shortening any metal zipper, but I haven’t had to do that yet.

When I shorten a poly zip, I keep the top portion in tact and stitch across the zip toward the bottom for the length needed.  Kathleen’s technique removed teeth at the top, keeping the bottom in tact.

Also, take a look at these other two zipper tutorial links at Kathleen’s blog:
Centered Zipper Template
Centered Zipper Tutorial

Kathleen, thanks for the great tutorials.

Update Jan 2011: Tutorials have moved here Fashion-Incubator tutorials


Image courtesy of Kathleen at

Leave a Lazy Comment

3 Responses to “How to Shorten a Separating or Metal Zipper”

  1. Jan Myers — April 23, 2007 @ 8:28 am

    This video on shortening a zipper was great. Thanks for the links. I had learned this once before many years ago, but hadn’t done it in years. I like being able to create the size purse (or other project) I want and not be dependent on a store-bought zipper size. This will come in handy today! Thanks!

    Jan Myers

  2. Gina Reddin — January 16, 2011 @ 2:40 pm

    Hi Joan,
    I thought you might want to know that the referral links go to pages that are no longer active as she has completely redone her website.

    • Joan Hawley replied: — January 16th, 2011 @ 2:44 pm

      I’ve update the post with a working link. Thanks Gina!