If you sew clothing, bags, or other items using sewing machines like the Janome 7318, you’ve probably already mastered inserting a straight zipper. So it’s time to step up to sewing circular zippers. If that makes you nervous, don't let it! You can add a full circle zipper with Janome sewing machines just as easily as a straight zipper when you use these quick tips.

Step 1 - Make the Zipper Tab

When adding a circular zipper to a purse or some other round object on sewing machines, begin by cutting an 8-inch strip of your project fabric the same width as the zipper to be sewn in. This will be the tab that secures the zipper in place once you determine how long the tab needs to be.

To do this, you’ll need to calculate how long the zipper will be based on the size of your item and how much of a tab you want to include. For a full-circle zipper, a tab of 1 inch is usually sufficient. Your tab fabric should end up being your needed length times the width of the zipper tape.

Step 2 - Mark and Place the Zipper Tab

Mark the ends of the zipper tab with marking chalk ½-inch in from both sides. This is to account for the seam allowance once you sew in the zipper tape. Place the tab fabric right side down onto the right side of the end of the zipper and stitch it into place across one of the marked lines. Then fold the tab fabric under like you’re extending the length of the zipper.

Step 3 - Connect the Zipper Tape Ends

Open the zipper slightly at the top and tape the ends closed. Curl the zipper into a loop and bring the taped end to lay over the tab fabric in the same way as the other end. Stitch this end of the zipper just like the other end so the two ends are connected via the zipper tab fabric. Remove the tape. You should now have a circular zipper tape ready to be inserted into your project.

Step 4 - Snip the Zipper Tape

For the zipper tape to stitch smoothly to your project, you need to snip the edges so the tape can spread slightly. Make ¼-inch cuts in the tape every â…œ-inch along both sides so it can curve without bunching or pulling. Once it is sewn in using your Janome 7318, these cuts won’t be visible at all.

Step 5 - Pin the Zipper Tape Into Place

Open the zipper all the way up to the end where the zipper tab is stitched. Lay one side of the zipper tape along one seam allowance on the wrong side of your project fabric and pin it into position. The cuts in the zipper tape will spread open as you fit the tape to the rounded edge of your fabric.

Step 6 - Stitch the Zipper Tape On

Once you’ve pinned on the zipper tape, you can carefully stitch it on from the wrong size using Janome sewing machines set up with a zipper foot. Sew all the way around, including the zipper tab fabric, to connect it all to your project. Close the zipper to make sure everything looks good.

Once you've stitched on the first side of the zipper, open it up again and repeat Steps 5 and 6 for the second side of the zipper tape. After attaching both sides, you should be able to turn the item right side out and zip it closed all the way around. If there’s any excess fabric in the way of the zipper, go around and snip it close to the stitching so the edges are clean and straight.

Just like that, you can set in full circle zippers using a Janome 7318 or other sewing machines! The trick to getting this right is using the right length zipper and leaving yourself an inch of zipper tab to secure the zipper tape to the item so it can open fully while still holding the two sides together at the end. Once this is done, the rest is simple when using quality Janome sewing machines!

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