Four years ago, I begged and convinced Patrick that I NEEDED to have this beautiful new (expensive) winter coat. It was warm and white and wonderful. I swore to him that if he let me buy it, I wouldn't need another coat for five years. It was everything I'd dreamed of... for two months. Then the zipper broke, three buttons popped off and the color changed to a dirty beige. There wasn't a new coat in my future, so I took it to the laundramat and scoured it in the big metal sink with bleach and a scrub brush, tore out the zipper and replaced it, found new buttons and even had to un-mat the furry hood with a cat brush. Now I have to hand wash it every winter. This picture was taken in January of this year. Its still the warmest thing I've ever worn, but I don't think I'll ever buy a white coat again.
The broken zipper went into a container with other useless zippers, to use for some project eventually. Two years ago, I started noticing zippers as decoration on everything from t-shirts to headbands. After finding a pair of shoes with zipper straps, I thought, "Those would make great roses on hair barrettes." I started cutting and sewing the zippers into flowers, then glued them to metal hair clips with a felt backing.
Last year, I took a dozen pairs to an art show and sold almost all of them. The white pair in this picture is made from the broken zipper I pulled out of my coat.
Zippers made for winter jackets are more industrial looking with bigger teeth. I think they looked the best.