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Zip Zip Zippers!

After reading my posts (Misadventures in Bag Making and If at first you don’t succeed…) my wonderful friend Wendy Hill (IG – @wendyquilter) offered to send me some of her HUGE collection of zippers to support my future adventures (or misadventures, ha!) in bag making. I of course took her up on her offer!

So a couple of weeks some “GOOD MAIL” arrived – a bag of zippers in various sizes from Wendy!

So how did Wendy come to have all these zippers in her stash and what had she done with all these zippers in the past? Well she was kind enough send photos and a summary of the story so I could share with you in this post.

“Zipper Mania” by Wendy Hill (edited by tierneycreates)

Around 2007 I wanted to make things with zipper but they too expensive to even buy used at a thrift store considering how many I needed.

So I put out a request for zippers in the Ruralite Magazine (Western USA, Midstate Electric Co-op) and many zippers arrived to my home!

The smallest package I received: 1 zipper

smallest package
And I received many zippers in the mail which I sorted by color into bags – it looked like a spice bazaar!

all bags #1
I thought of all these zippers as a “material” for my art projects. Here is what I made below.

String piecing using flat zippers

“Autumn Textures” is my favorite. It has been in exhibits.

Autumn Textures, Wendy Hill copyautumn_tex_detail_sm

I did make several quilts with flat zippers between 2008 and 2011)

Coiled Bowls using half zippers

In the photos below are two different bowls- left zip pulls in as decorative elements)

middle bowl2zipbowlzipbowlside

3D Art – Zipper Cones –  Sea Anemones

I have more zipper ideas— but I have not followed up on them in a long time.


Thanks to Wendy for sharing her story and art related to her donated zipper collection. And thanks to Wendy for sharing some of her collection with me. I am pretty sure there will be some “GOOD MAIL” in her future when I send her a little something I’ve made with one or two of the zippers she sent me.

Next post I will show you the project I just finished using one of the zippers she sent me – another bag – this time a different pattern by s.o.t.a.k. handmade.

41 thoughts on “Zip Zip Zippers!”

    1. One of my projects was on the crafty side- I used half zippers, an empty clean jar, and liquid glue to make a flower vase. It’s a bit messy, but I think kids would LOVE doing this. Slather some glue on the jar- I did an inch or more at a time- and wrap the half zippers around the jar. You can overlap the zippers a little bit or not. These instructions are kind of lame- try it out- probably easier to do than to describe.

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  1. I LOVE your post about the zippers! And the Sea Anemones is my favorite – how creative is that!! Also love the quilt….what an imagination! Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

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  2. These projects are so cool. The zipper sea anemones are really really neat, I love them! Glad to see that you received some happy mail! (that reminds me of the time I knit my friends ‘zipper mittens’ with a big zipper down the side. Zippers are truly too much fun!

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  3. Wendy, oh wow! I suspect you had given much thought of how many zippers were hiding in other peoples home when you made that request for a “few zippers”. It reminds me of someone I used to know locally who got in the machine knitting and she made a request on a group “has anyone got such a machine”….it appeared that many people had them, gathering dust, usually under the bed. I think she was offered something like 12 and then a few that were more suitable for spares!

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    1. Receiving over 90 packages of zippers was a Big Surprise. So many people were grateful to have a place to send them. It’s really great when we can connect people who want stuff with people who have it!

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  4. That was so kind of her to share the zippers. Her art was stunning. Also, I really enjoyed your feelings on paper piecing on Stitch, Please. I’m trying to be a nicer person so I don’t have to do it in hell.

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