I went into this project so bright-eyed and hopeful; yes, other people complained about zippers, and some people build their project repertoires around projects without zippers. But, surely things would be different for me! I would just follow directions and be careful, and surely everything would turn out all right! Zippers could not be that hard; other people must not be persistent or brave enough!
I was flushed with my successes so far- no, my work was not perfect, and my last pillow was a lot smaller than the book said it should be. But, I do not expect perfection, at least not right away, and was thrilled with my work so far. I was looking forward to learning a new, useful skill (zipper installation) that would open up a wider variety of projects, likes skirts, dresses, and pants.
I bravely changed the presser foot- I think this was the first time I had done this, and it was a lot easier than I had expected- and got started. True, I was unable to find a diagram about how exactly the zipper is positioned in relation to the zipper foot, but I just tried to figure it out. It was immediately apparent that my machine does not like sewing anything remotely thick, such as fabric next to a zipper. OK, I reasoned, nothing is perfect, just coax the machine into doing what is was designed to do. But, I ended up breaking two needles!
As far as I can tell, I followed the zipper directions. I managed to baste the zipper on and get one side of the zipper fully sewn on before slinking away in horror.
After this project, I looked askance at my sewing machine for a week, and was wary of starting a too-hard project, or any project at all. I’m going to come back to learning how to sew zippers after doing the rest of the two-spool projects. I don’t know what I am doing wrong- I might have to put out a craigslist ad asking for help, or find a class on zippers. For my next project, I am going to make a sewing machine cozy from Sew Everything Workshop. I am fully committed to learning zippers- they make so many more types of projects possible- but am taking a break from them right now.