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Topic: Help with Mending Trousers  (Read 901 times)
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BeccaJaneStClair
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« on: June 15, 2011 04:44:14 AM »

My husband asked me if I could mend his hiking trousers - specifically, he realised they are a little too long, and he kept standing on the hem and now it's ripped. He asked me to turn up the bottom just enough so he doesn't step on it.  Normally, this is no problem, but I discovered when I grabbed the trousers today that they have a zipper at the bottom of each leg running up about 6 inches to assist with removing the legs (they're convertible trousers-to-shorts).  How can I turn up the bottom so he can still use that zipper short of removing and putting back in the zipper?

Thanks
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Alexus1325
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2011 07:37:48 AM »

Well, there's a lazy way and a not so lazy way.

The lazy way is cut them off with an inch extra length, including across the zipper, then double fold a half-inch hem, including the zipper. The fold will keep the zipper pull from flying off into the ether when they're zipped. Your machine might mad at you for sewing over the folded zipper teeth, though, depending on how strong it is, and I would definitely not do this with a metal zipper because of the chance of breaking the needle.

The non-lazy way would be to unpick the seams around the zipper a little past where the hem will fall, cut off the zipper, singe the ends, zigzag on length = 0 to make a new stopper on each side. You could also harvest the metal stoppers from the ends of the zipper and reattach them with pliers, or even buy new ones if there is an upholstery place in town. Then it's just a matter of restitching the side seams to the zipper and doing your double fold hem.

If the hem is going to be so short that you can't simply cut off the old hem, you can unpick the old hem to make up the difference. I recommend the double fold hem because it has enough weight that the fabric of the legs will fall nicely and it saves you from having to finish the free edge with a zigzag stitch or serger. Double-needles are really nice for this sort of use because they do two lines of stitching at once, but it can be tricky to accomplish if your machine has only one spool post. You'll have to McGuiver a chopstick or something Tongue

Hope that helps, and good luck Cheesy
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ljelondon
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2011 03:44:42 PM »

Where are they too long, and where's the zipper? I find often trousers are too long at the back and get trodden on there but there isn't so much of a problem in the front -- if so you could take a tuck up in the back like a dart wrapping round the back of the foot and tapering down to nothing in the sides, so that they don't get trodden on at the back but you don't have to worry about the zipper. That only works if the zipper is in the side or front, though.
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BeccaJaneStClair
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« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2011 03:30:24 AM »


Well, there's a lazy way and a not so lazy way.

Lazy Lazy! We like lazy!

Quote
The lazy way is cut them off with an inch extra length, including across the zipper, then double fold a half-inch hem, including the zipper. The fold will keep the zipper pull from flying off into the ether when they're zipped. Your machine might mad at you for sewing over the folded zipper teeth, though, depending on how strong it is, and I would definitely not do this with a metal zipper because of the chance of breaking the needle.

but how would that work for unzipping them?

Quote
The non-lazy way would be to unpick the seams around the zipper a little past where the hem will fall, cut off the zipper, singe the ends, zigzag on length = 0 to make a new stopper on each side. You could also harvest the metal stoppers from the ends of the zipper and reattach them with pliers, or even buy new ones if there is an upholstery place in town. Then it's just a matter of restitching the side seams to the zipper and doing your double fold hem.

If the hem is going to be so short that you can't simply cut off the old hem, you can unpick the old hem to make up the difference. I recommend the double fold hem because it has enough weight that the fabric of the legs will fall nicely and it saves you from having to finish the free edge with a zigzag stitch or serger. Double-needles are really nice for this sort of use because they do two lines of stitching at once, but it can be tricky to accomplish if your machine has only one spool post. You'll have to McGuiver a chopstick or something Tongue

Hope that helps, and good luck Cheesy

My machine is a 1932 Singer I inherited from Tim's gran. He doesn't believe me when I tell him I need a newer machine because "this one works". *sigh*

Thanks for the detailed instructions. These will come in handy if all else fails!

Where are they too long, and where's the zipper? I find often trousers are too long at the back and get trodden on there but there isn't so much of a problem in the front -- if so you could take a tuck up in the back like a dart wrapping round the back of the foot and tapering down to nothing in the sides, so that they don't get trodden on at the back but you don't have to worry about the zipper. That only works if the zipper is in the side or front, though.

The zippers are on the side, and as far as I can tell, the only issue Tim has is with the backs of the trousers, as the front just covers his hiking boots.  That's a good idea, I'll try that!
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Alexus1325
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2011 07:05:07 PM »

Quote
The lazy way is cut them off with an inch extra length, including across the zipper, then double fold a half-inch hem, including the zipper. The fold will keep the zipper pull from flying off into the ether when they're zipped. Your machine might mad at you for sewing over the folded zipper teeth, though, depending on how strong it is, and I would definitely not do this with a metal zipper because of the chance of breaking the needle.

but how would that work for unzipping them?

LOL, sorry, shoulda been more specific. You do that for each HALF of the zipper. You do it on one side, and then the other.

Hope hubby buys you an awesome birthday/holiday present *wink wink*
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