Illustrated by Liz Rugman

Fly zip insertion can appear complicated at first glance. All those layers and twists and turns. Heres a method Ive devised that takes away the stress, leaving you free to get on with the assembly details!

  1. Interface the attached fly facings with Vilene G785 lightweight fusible if fabric is fluid or prone to stretch. Mark the centre front seam-line onto the wrong side of the trouser front. Lay the zipper along side the seam and mark the top and bottom of the zip length along the line. With right sides together, machine-baste for the length of the zip; reduce the stitch length to 2.5 and back stitch or lock stitch to secure before continuing to sew to within 5cm (2) of the end.
  2. Press seam open, then press a 1cm (3/8) lip along the left front seam allowance. This will provide a ledge for the zip to sit under.
  3. Place zip face up under pressed edge. Pin and sew in place close to the edge, from base up using a zipper foot. Needle should be to the right of the foot nearest the zipper.
  4. Fold remaining fly facing over zip; turn garment over and pin zip tape to zip facing only one layer! This time sew in place from the top down the centre of the zip tape, still only sewing through one layer of fabric. A second row can be sewn close to the edge for heavier fabrics.
    Turn to right side, keeping seam allowances open and flat.
  5. Using a fine chalk liner, mark a line 3cm (1 ) in from the centre front, curving towards the base of the zip. Pin in place through all layers. Top stitch, still using the zipper foot and starting from the base of the zip towards the waistline. Stitch length 3.0 -3.5. Remove basting and open zip.
  6. Position zip-guard behind left front, aligning long edge with zipper tape.
  7. Flip over to reverse side, pinning zip guard to zip tape and seam allowance.
  8. Sew close to edge taking care not to catch in garment. Sew down as far as possible, the remaining couple of centimetres will be caught into place with the bar tack.
  9. Check that zip opens correctly. Zip guard should be visible behind left front. Close up zipper before sewing a bar tack to the base of the zip. A zigzag stitch can be customised to a bar tack by setting stitch length to 1.0 and stitch width to 1.5-2.0.
  10. Sew a second bar tack on the inside attaching the base of the zip guard to the seam allowance only.
    Complete garment assembly.

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