Patchwork cushion with “invisible” zipper, overlock of course – Part 2

Dear reader, let's learn a new technique with your overlocker: An “invisible” zipper! You can use this type of closure with any pillowcase. However, the details and measurements below refer to the Bargello style pillowcase, started in a separate article. If you would like to learn how to make this pillowcase front, please read Part 1: Patchwork Pillow in the Bargello Quilt Style, serged sewn of course.

“Invisible” zipper with overlock

For the back, I need 2 pieces of fabric, 27 x 9″ each, because I want to sew an “invisible” zipper with the overlock. I can barely see it! And you?

The procedure is as follows:

On a piece of fabric, press one long edge below 1″. Then iron this hem the same amount, folded like an invisible hem.

Then pin the zipper to the hem a small distance from the edge, right sides together. At the beginning and end of sewing, place the two folded spare pieces of fabric, right sides together, between the zipper and the fabric. This will prevent the zipper from opening completely.

Thread the machine with the RN 3-thread overlock, straight needle. Attach the L16L piping foot. Adjust the cutting width, so that the zipper is not cut, for my zipper it worked with a cutting width of 8. Open the zipper, then sew the seam with a 3 thread overlock.

Tip: if you are sewing on an L 860/850/890/460/450, use the piping foot. Alternatively, on the L 890, you can use the chainstitch to sew the zipper – if you do this, I recommend first tightening the edge with a 3-thread overlock.

Press the seam.

Pin the fabric pieces from the zipper end to the other side of the zipper.

Pin the zipper to the other piece of back fabric. Remove the zipper pull again if you used it for precision pinning.

Sew the zipper in place.

As usual, iron the seam.

Thread the zipper pull.

Hidden? Or did I promise too much?

Completion of the pillowcase

Thread the machine with a 4-thread overlock. Attach the standard foot. Finally, I set the cutting width to 9, to have the widest seam allowance possible, so that the seams of the bands and zippers are well secured.

Pin the back piece with the “invisible” side of the zipper to the top edge of the Bargello piece.

Although I can still see the stitch holes at 6mm in the undone Bargello seam allowances, I sewed this seam with a 9mm seam allowance and trimmed 2mm. I have enough fabric and the top strip goes on the back of the pillowcase, so I used it generously.

I ironed the seam allowance toward the Bargello to make it look like the strip was overlapping toward the back.

Now measure and determine the finished length, respectively the width of the back. The fabric combination should have a finished width of 32″. With the Bargello there is a 9 mm seam and a cut of 3 mm or 1/2″. The same applies to the back, so my fabric combinations are reduced to 33″. If your pillow has a different measurement, consider this accordingly.

Now pin the bottom edge of the Bargello piece with the back.

Sew with the wide 4-thread overlock.

Iron the seam allowance towards the Bargello.

Now it's time to “center” the Bargello on the front, respectively, I want the top and bottom to overlap equally towards the back. This gives me flexibility in how I place the pillow – with an up or down arrow.

Pin the side seams together as the design meets your needs. Make sure the zipper is at least two-thirds open!

Then sew the side seams with the wide 4-thread overlock, while I recommend forming a long chain of threads at the beginning and end of the seam. You can pull it into the seam allowance with a tapestry needle and the seam is secure and the corners are reinforced.

Iron the seams. Turn the pillowcase over and shape the corners nicely. Press the side seams one last time.

And then enjoy!

With that, I wish you lots of fun in all your sewing projects, although of course I hope you make many with the overlocker!


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