Sewing Closures – Buttons, Fasteners, And Zippers

Sewing closures consist of buttons, fasteners, and zippers. These notions, sewing closures are part of the finishing touches to a sewing project and are one of the last actions that one takes to complete a garment, but this is no reason to pay any less attention than to any other aspect of the garment.

These notions should be selected to match the garment or to make the garment stand out. These notions can be decorative as well as functional.


One of my favorite closures is buttons. These notions come in some fabulous colors and styles and can really make a garment a fashion statement. Buttons can have holes that you can see through or they can have a shank hidden on the underside of the button. Buttons can also be fabric covered to match the color of the garment. Buttons can be made from just about any material, such as plastic, brass, silver, nylon, shell or bone. These notions can look like buttons or they can look like flowers, animals or some abstract object, so they don’t always have to be round. Buttons can be very large, very small or somewhere in between. Buttons are a tool that can give a garment style on the outside.

Buttons Buttons Buttons

Button Variety


Fasteners are those closures that are more utilarian than decorative, and generally designed to be hidden instead of seen. Although there are some fasteners that are designed to be seen on the outside of the garment, most are designed to be unseen, sometimes to support areas where buttons are placed, but from the inside of the garment. Fasteners consist of hooks and eyes, snaps, toggles, and Velcro. These notions can be light weight or heavy duty, large or small. Fasteners such as hooks and eyes, and snaps generally are metallic, but can come in colors as well. Their supportive function makes them a necessary notion in many sewing projects.

Different Fasteners such as Snaps and Hook and Eye

Different Fasteners


Zippers are probably the closure that is used the most. It is a good idea to keep zippers on hand in various sizes, types and colors. Zippers can have plastic or metal teeth. Zippers fall into the categories of:

All-purpose zippers made of polyester and used for skirt/pants, dresses and home décor.

All-purpose metal zippers are strong, durable zippers generally used for sportswear, but they can also be used for skirts/pants, dresses and home décor items.

Jeans zippers generally made of brass and used for jeans and other garments that require a medium weight to heavy duty zipper, such as work clothes.

Invisible zippers are designed to disappear into the seam of the fabric with only the zipper pull showing.

Separating zippers are designed to come totally apart and are designed for jackets, sportswear, and home décor items. These zippers can have metal or plastic teeth.

Zippers Jacket  Zipper

Zipper Sizes and Types

For more information about these sewing closures some good references are:

• The Complete Photo Guide to Sewing - revised and expanded edition by Singer

• The Sewing Book – by Alison Smith

For more interesting information about sewing closures, click here on to learn more about buttons, and click here on to learn more about zippers, including some videos on zippers

For great deals on sewing supplies and notions click here on the Hancock Fabrics Homepage

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