If you have a serger that has the coverhem stitch, you have probably already figured out that it isn’t just for hemming! Coverhems also make it easy to decorate your fabric or your project and sew on zippers.
Some sergers only have a two needle coverhem stitch. Other sergers add another needle for a triple coverhem stitch, which gives your coverhems a different look. Coverhems work great for stitching down ribbon or trims, working with the right side of your fabric facing up. With the right side of your fabric facing down, you get beautiful loops for a decorative effect. Changing your thread in the looper to a decorative thread or light cord, makes the loops even more interesting.
The coverhem can also be used for sewing on zippers. It works best on fabric that has a definite length, and using a zipper that is at least two inches longer than the fabric length where you want the zipper. Sewing zippers on with a serger works best using zippers with smaller polyester teeth, not the sports zipper or metal teeth zipper. Using a regular 3 or 4 thread overlock stitch also works well for sewing on zippers. One thing to watch for though, is your serger foot. Regardless of which stitch you use, make sure your foot will either ride on the teeth or ride along the teeth while still giving you a decent looking stitch.
I used the coverhem for all the stitching on this bag, except at the very end when I serged the sides of the bag together; then I used the standard 4 thread overlock stitch. Serging slowly, the cutter goes right through the plastic zipper teeth and the needle slides between the teeth really well.
I also made the straps using the coverhem, although next time I will make narrower straps for this size of a project!
The serger in the photos is the Pfaff Coverlock 4862.