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4 Ultimate Tips to Zipper Selection and Use

4 Ultimate Tips to Zipper Selection and Use

Before taking up your project, making the right selection of materials for the project should be considered.

The best way to getting the best zipper materials is to contact a zipper supplier who has much information about zippers and also ready to share this information with you. However, these few tips could do a lot to guide you to choosing the best zippers out there.

1. Zipper selection

There are different types of zippers with different lengths, different parts and material make-up, different shapes or designs. Making the right selection may pose a great challenge if there is little or no knowledge whatsoever about them. Before you can select a good zipper, having a good knowledge about all these will make it a lot easier to deal with.

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2. Different types of zippers

  • Coil zippers

The Coil Zippers are the most available type of zippers. Often, they are referred to as the Nylon Zippers because of the Nylon material make-up. Now, however, they are made of polyester but still retain their name “Nylon Zipper”. These zippers are heat resistant, light-weight and/or rustproof. Because they are readily available, they are often said to be the best zippers but that may not be true. Availability doesn’t necessarily indicate good quality.

  • Separating zippers

The separating zippers are so designed to completely be separated after the installation of the zipper. The name “open-ended zippers” shouldn’t confuse you, it’s the same zipper. The separating zipper uses a box and pin mechanism and commonly is installed or used on coats, hoodies or sweatshirts.

  • Invisible zippers

The coil on these zippers is located on the back of the zipper, installed such that it’s hidden or not visible. The best projects to use these zippers on are dresses and skirts. A perfect description for this zipper could be “a coil zipper with a tear drop- like pull”.

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  • Metal teeth zippers

This zipper has two lines of metal teeth, modeled and lined on each side of the zipper tape at regular intervals. The material make-up could be of nickel, aluminum, and brass. Commonly, they are used on hard case bags and in jeans wears.

  • Plastic teeth zippers

The plastic zippers could be mistaken for Metal teeth Zipper. The only distinguishing fact is the plastic material they are made unlike the metal teeth zippers made of aluminum, brass, and nickel. They are also used on jeans wears and hard case bags but more prevalent on bags. They could be affected by heat so caution must be taken being used on projects especially on wears as ironing the dress may damage the zipper. This is the major reason they are commonly used on bags compared to jeans or wears. They are rustproof.

3. Zipper make up

Every zipper has three parts, the slider, teeth and the tape. The chain is formed when the two side-lined teeth are joined together by the slider. In separating zipper, you can also find the reinforcement film, insertion pin, and the retainer box.

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4. Measuring zipper length

Zipper lengths are measured from teeth to teeth or metal to metal. If measuring a closed bottom zipper, start your measurement from the top stop and measure down to the bottom stopper. But, if measuring a separating zipper, start measurement from the top stopper and measure down to the end of the retainer box.

It shouldn’t be confusing seeing or hearing measurement lengths of zippers. The numbers in a zipper label simply refer to the width of the chain. For instance, a zipper indicated as #3 has a chain measuring 3mm and a zipper indicated as #5 has a chain measuring 5mm. A closer look at the zipper slider will reveal the number of chain measurement.

However the length measurement of zippers which are of different varieties, there could still be a need to shorten the zipper length to meet accurate usage. This, of course, shouldn’t be a big problem or challenge. The easiest way to have this done is simply stitching over the coils where you desire to create a stop. Trip out the lower end of the zipper after getting your accurate zipper length for your production. Where to create the stop either at the top or bottom depends solely on what you are using the zipper for or its position on the production and it’s your choice to make. However, it’s better to shorten the zipper from the top when it’s been used on the waistband of skirts or pants. If used on pockets or the necklines, it’s better to shorten from the bottom.

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When sewing a zipper into the waistband of pants or a skirt zippers should be shortened from the top. Shorten from the bottom for pockets and necklines.

5. Zipper care tips

  • If zippers ever get stuck, use a liquid soap help get if freed.
  • Either metal teeth or plastic teeth zipper, make sure to cover the zipper with fabrics when ironing, keep it closed and the slider fixed.
  • When laundering, ensure to launder with the zipper closed so as not to damage the teeth and slider.

 

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MICHAEL LILY

Writer/entrepreneural development specialist

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Last Updated on July 23, 2019

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

In the journey of growth, there are times when we grow and excel. We are endlessly driven and hyped up, motivated to get our goals.

Then there are times when we stagnate. We feel uninspired and unmotivated. We keep procrastinating on our plans. More often than not, we get out of a rut, only to get back into another one.

How do you know if you are stagnating? Here are some tell-tale signs:

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  • If you have been experiencing chronic procrastination on your goals
  • If you don’t ever feel like doing anything
  • If you keep turning to sleep, eating, games, mindless activities and entertainment for comfort
  • If you know you should be doing something, but yet you keep avoiding it
  • If you have not achieved anything new or significant now relative to 1 month, 2 months or 3 months ago
  • If you have a deep sense of feeling that you are living under your potential

When we face stagnation in life, it’s a sign of deeper issues. Stagnation, just like procrastination, is a symptom of a problem. It’s easy to beat ourselves over it, but this approach is not going to help. Here, I will share 5 steps to help you move out of this stagnation. They won’t magically transform your life in 1 night (such changes are never permanent because the foundations are not built), but they will help you get the momentum going and help you get back on track.

1. Realize You’re Not Alone

Everyone stagnates at some point or another. You are not alone in this and more importantly, it’s normal. In fact, it’s amazing how many of my clients actually face the same predicament, even though all of them come from different walks of life, are of different ages, and have never crossed paths. Realizing you are not alone in this will make it much easier to deal with this period. By trying to “fight it”, you’re only fighting yourself. Accept this situation, acknowledge it, and tell yourself it’s okay. That way, you can then focus on the constructive steps that will really help you.

2. Find What Inspires You

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Stagnation comes because there isn’t anything that excites you enough to take action. If you don’t have a habit of setting goals, and instead just leave yourself to daily mundanes, it’s not surprising you are experiencing stagnation. What do you want to do if there are no limitations? If you can have whatever you want, what will it be? The answers to these questions will provide the fuel that will drive you forward.

On the other hand, even if you are an experienced goal setter, there are times when the goals you set in the past lose their appeal now. It’s normal and it happens to me too. Sometimes we lose touch with our goals, since we are in a different emotional state compared to when we first set them. Sometimes our priorities change and we no longer want to work on those goals anymore. However, we don’t consciously realize this, and what happens is we procrastinate on our goals until it compounds into a serious problem. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to relook into your goals. There’s no point in pursuing goals that no longer inspire you. Trash away your old goals (or just put them aside) and ask yourself what you really want now. Then go for them.

3. Give Yourself a Break

When’s the last time you took a real break for yourself? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year? Never? Perhaps it’s time to take a time-out. Prolonged working can cause someone to become disillusioned as they lose sight of who they are and what they want.

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Go take some extended leave from work. A few days at bare minimum; a few weeks or months will be great. Some of my ex-colleagues have quit their jobs and took months out to do some self-reflection. Of course, some of us might not have that luxury, so we can stick to a few weeks of leave. Go on a trip elsewhere and get away from your work and your life. Use this chance to get a renewed perspective of life. Think about your life purpose, what you want and what you want to create for your life in the future. These are big questions that require deep thinking over them. It’s not about finding the answers at one go, but about taking the first step to finding the answers.

4. Shake up Your Routines

Being in the same environment, doing the same things over and over again and meeting the same people can make us stagnant. This is especially if the people you spend the most time with are stagnant themselves.

Change things around. Start with simple things, like taking a different route to work and eating something different for breakfast. Have your lunch with different colleagues, colleagues you never talked much with. Work in a different cubicle if your work has free and easy seating. Do something different than your usual for weekday evenings and weekends. Cultivate different habits, like exercising every day, listening to a new series of podcasts every morning to work, reading a book, etc (here’s 6 Proven Ways To Make New Habits Stick). The different contexts will give you different stimulus, which will trigger off different thoughts and actions in you.

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When I’m in a state of stagnancy, I’ll get a sense of what’s making me stagnate. Sometimes it’s the environment I’m in, sometimes it’s the people I’ve been hanging out with, sometimes it’s my lifestyle. Most of the times it’s a combination of all these. Changing them up helps to stir myself out of the stagnant mode.

5. Start with a Small Step

Stagnation also comes from being frozen in fear. Maybe you do want this certain goal, but you aren’t taking action. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work needed? Are you afraid you will make mistakes? Is the perfectionist in you taking over and paralyzing you?

Let go of the belief that it has to be perfect. Such a belief is a bane, not a boon. It’s precisely from being open to mistakes and errors that you move forward. Break down what’s before you into very very small steps, then take those small steps, a little step at a time. I had a client who had been stagnating for a long period because he was afraid of failing. He didn’t want to make another move where he would make a mistake. However, not wanting to make a mistake has led him to do absolutely nothing for 2-3 years. On the other hand, by doing just something, you would already be making progress, whether it’s a mistake or not. Even if you make a supposed “mistake”,  you get feedback to do things differently in the next step. That’s something you would never have known if you never made a move.

More to Help You Stay Motivated

Here are some resources that will help you break out of your current phase:

Featured photo credit: Anubhav Saxena via unsplash.com

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