Squirrel Nut Zipper

Remember that one-hit wonder band from the 90’s? No? Don’t worry–you’re not missing much.

The last step in the Steggie sweater is putting the zipper in.  This involves two things that traditionally do not like me much: needle and thread.  I’m much happier with sticks and yarn.  Realizing, however, that the sweater wouldn’t finish itself, I took a deep breath and threaded the needle.

It takes a few steps to get a zipper attached, and there are already some good tutorials out there which I used to teach myself.

First, you line up the zipper and pin it into place:


Then you baste it into place and zip it up to make sure it looks okay.  Use a very contrasting yarn to make this easier to remove later. At this point, if you see anything wrong/not lining up, remove the basting line and repeat the above steps if you have the patience and need for that sort of perfection.  I am not so afflicted.


That looked pretty good, except for the bottom part.  I figured I could just stretch the bottom and sew it over when I was done.  I can also see that the zipper I bought is actually a bit long–ideally it would end just at the neckline.  The tabs sticking up I didn’t worry about–I knew that they would be folded over and sewn in when I was done.

Remove the pins, and backstitch into place.  I used invisible yarn, which is probably not the best choice, but it was what I had around and I didn’t have the patience to wait until I could make it to the store to get a matching green.

All done!  It’s funny–I was really nervous about giving it to him.  I mean, I’ve been working on this on and off for over 3 months, and what if he didn’t really like it?  As it turns out, I didn’t have to worry.


One happy stegosaur, proudly holding up his “tail.”

After he put it on, he kept walking around the house on all fours, roaring, and pretending to “spike” people.