Saturday, December 14, 2013

Faster Fastener

My granddaughter is just four.  She attends pre-K, which means she  wears uniform pants that are very difficult to fasten.  

The zipper is short (maybe 3 inches, but I doubt it) so the zipper head is a mess when it gets stuck and, worse, there are a button and a hook and eye. This means, of course, that going to the bathroom is difficult because she has so many different fasteners to deal with. Holding it till she gets home is not an option, and the teacher can't fasten 30 kids' pants.  So her mom, Jenny, decided that we needed to come up with a better solution.  Enter Velcro! 

First we had to remove the button (easy peasy) and the metal hook and eye (not lemon squeasy).  Her pants have the heavy duty hook and eye sets that require lots of interfacing for stabilization.  No matter what I tried, I ended up with a big hole once the metal parts were out. The solution was to cover the hole with the Velcro....that works.  The button hole is on the inside tab, so it doesn't show.

To remove the hook and eye pieces, I snipped a small hole near the metal hook, then cut around the hook on the two short sides and one long side.  I pulled the inside piece of the hook through the hole I'd made and clipped it out trying not to disturb the inside.  I removed the second half of the hook and eye pair, again making a big hole.  You can try to separate the two metal pieces, but that is very difficult and tends to shred the fabrics, which will cause other problems. 

Once the old fasteners were out, I cut two sets of 1/2 inch Velcro hook and loop tape about 3/4 inches long.  I placed one piece against the outside edge covering the hole and stitched it down around the edges. 
Then I added the second piece about 1/8 inch from the first. 

This part is important if you have little kids: the second piece is the opposite of the first (see the picture above).  So, if you stitch a hook first, you need to stitch a loop section beside it.  On the opposite side of the waistband stitch down the matching hook and loop pieces so that they line up with the first ones.  

Now to answer your question why I didn't just stitch one long piece: it's important that the two pieces be different so that they DON'T stick when Marley misses the mark.  She won't have to struggle to get the parts of the closure to work correctly because they work only when they are matched correctly.  This is important because she is, after all, only four.  

There you have it.  Marley can now fasten and unfasten her own pants, and they look especially darling, don't you agree? 

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