How to: Insert a Hook and Eye

3 Materials
20 Minutes

In today's tutorial, you'll learn how to sew a hook and eye. Generally, this is found at the top of a zipper and is meant to help keep the zipper closed while also taking some tension off the zipper. Hook and eyes help keep zippers from failing and ensure the longevity of your garments.

Tools and materials:

  • Thread (that matches your garment)
  • Needle
  • Hook and eye
Hook and eye latch

Attach your hook or eye 

To start, cut about two feet of thread and slip it through your thread. Tie the ends together. Them, cut off any excess thread (leaving about an eighth of an inch after the knot to ensure it doesn’t come untied). Next, place your hook or eye right above the zipper, just inside the edge of the fabric (on the inside of the garment), and hold it in place. Using your free hand, insert the needle into the fabric and loop it through itself to secure it. Then, insert the needle into the small eyes of the hook or eye and whip stitch around by inserting the needle into the fabric and then into the small eye. This will whip stitch around the small eye securing the piece to the fabric.

Hook and eye closure

Whipstitch the other side 

After you've looped the thread through one side six to eight times in one of the small eyes, insert the needle at an angle to start working towards the other side. Repeat the same process by looping your thread through the fabric and then through the small eyes a few times. 

Hook and eye sewing

Secure the hook 

Finally, we want to secure the end of the hook or eye (whichever you started with) so that the piece doesn’t pull away from the garment. To make sure it stays flush, insert the needle close to the fabric, (close to where the end of the hook is), and then wrap your thread around the hook, back into the fabric, and back around the hook. Repeat this a few times so that it’s nice and sturdy and then insert the needle underneath the hook to secure it. Exit the fabric and snip the excess so that only about three inches of the thread is left. Tie a coupe overhead knots and cut off the rest of the excess thread. 

Hook and eye clasp

Attach the hook or eye 

Zip the dress and press both sides together to see where the other half of the hook and eye should be placed. Next, same as before, insert the needle into the fabric and thread through. Next, hook the knotted end to secure it in place. Then, place the eye or hook (whichever you didn’t do yet) in place - make sure it’s facing the right direction - hold it down with one hand and use the other to loop the thread through the fabric and through the eye. Do this a few times to secure it. 

How to sew hook and eye

Move to the other side 

Now, same as before, after the first side is secure, angle over to the other eye and begin the same process on that side. However, this time, weave your thread through the larger eye as well to keep it flat against the fabric. Once you’ve wrapped the thread around the eye a few times, move to the other side and repeat the process until everything’s secured. 

Close the hook and eye

Finish the hook and eye 

To finish, insert the needle underneath and weave the thread through. Next, snip off the excess fabric, leaving about three inches, and tie a couple of overhand knots. Cut off the excess again and zip the zipper to make sure the hook and eye are aligned and secure. 

Finished hook and eye

Adding a hook and eye to the top of a garment can be helpful in a number of ways. It helps to secure the top of a zipper and takes the tension off the zipper itself giving the garment longevity. If the zipper locking mechanism is faulty and slides down when it is pulled, adding a hook and eye can keep the zipper up without having to replace the whole zipper. If the garment is slightly too big, adding a hook and eye can bring it in about ½” to make a better fit.

Suggested materials:
  • Thread
  • Needle
  • Hook and eye

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