National Zipper Day

A young woman wearing a stylish jacket, fastening a zipper while standing in a bustling city street..
National zipper day illustration

Hey there zipper enthusiasts! Are you ready to zip on over to the fascinating history of National Zipper Day? Buckle up, because we're about to uncover the sew-sew journey of this nifty invention.

When is Zipper Day?

It's national zipper day on the 29th April.

The Birth of the Zipper

Picture this: it's the late 19th century, and people are tired of fumbling with pesky buttons and hooks on their clothing. In comes the brilliant Elias Howe, who had already revolutionized the sewing machine industry. Now, he set his sights on creating a convenient fastening method. In 1851, Howe patented an 'Automatic, Continuous Clothing Closure' and laid the foundation for the zipper as we know it today.

Fast forward to 1913 when Gideon Sundback improved upon Howe's design and created the 'Separable Fastener.' His version consisted of interlocking metal teeth with a slider, making it easier than ever to secure clothing and accessories. Sundback's invention was a hit, and it wasn't long before the zipper made its way into the mainstream fashion world.

Zipper Revolutionizes Fashion

After its introduction, the zipper quickly gained popularity, providing a sleek and efficient alternative to traditional closures. In the 1930s, French fashion designers embraced zippers as a stylish embellishment, incorporating them into dresses, skirts, and even high-end couture collections. The once-humble zipper became a fashion statement, symbolizing modernity and practicality.

The versatility of the zipper didn't stop at garments. It soon found its way onto bags, shoes, and a wide range of accessories. The fastener proved so indispensable that it became an essential feature in countless industries, from luggage manufacturing to automotive upholstery.

Zip It Up with Celebration

Every year on April 29th, we celebrate National Zipper Day to pay homage to this iconic invention. It's a day to marvel at the ingenuity behind the zipper and appreciate how it has simplified our lives. You can join in the fun by organizing a zipper-themed fashion show, challenging your friends to a zipper-pulling contest, or simply taking a moment to appreciate every tiny zip that keeps your world together.

History behind the term 'Zipper'


The Pre-Zipper Era

In 1891, the first prototype of the zipper was created by Elias Howe, the inventor of the sewing machine. Although he designed a sliding fastener, Howe didn't market or further develop the invention, and it didn't gain much attention at the time.


The Automatic Clothing Closure

The concept for a modern zipper as we know it today was first patented in 1913 by Swedish-American engineer Gideon Sundback. His design, called the 'Hookless Fastener' or 'Separable Fastener,' featured interlocking metal teeth that could be opened and closed easily. However, it was initially used primarily for boots and tobacco pouches, with little application in clothing.


The Zipper Name

In 1917, the B.F. Goodrich Company, an American rubber manufacturer, introduced Gideon Sundback's fastening device in rubber boots and renamed it the 'Zipper' due to the sound it made when opened or closed. The name quickly caught on and became synonymous with the fastener.


Zipper Adoption in Fashion

By the early 1920s, fashion designers began to recognize the potential of the zipper as a convenient closure for clothing. French fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli prominently used zippers in her designs, introducing them to the world of high fashion. This led to increased acceptance and adoption of the zipper in the apparel industry.


The Invisible Zipper

In 1937, American engineer William Judson introduced the 'invisibly' sewn zipper, often referred to as the 'invisible zipper.' This innovative design made the teeth of the zipper hidden behind the fabric, creating a seamless appearance when closed. The invisible zipper offered a more aesthetically pleasing alternative to the traditional exposed zipper style.


The Zipper Becomes Popular

During the late 1950s and early 1960s, the zipper became an integral part of everyday clothing. Its ease of use and functionality led to its widespread adoption in various garments, including pants, skirts, dresses, and jackets. The zipper revolutionized the way people dressed, offering a practical and efficient alternative to buttons and clasps.


Zipper Advancements

Over the years, advancements in zipper technology have improved durability and ease of use. These include self-repairing zippers, double-separating zippers, water-resistant zippers, and more. The zipper has evolved into a versatile and reliable fastening solution, extensively used in fashion, outdoor gear, automotive upholstery, and various other industries.

Did you know?

Did you know that the 'zipper' was initially marketed as the 'Clasp Locker'? Good thing they decided to go with a catchier name!


fun fashion innovation

First identified

29th April 2015

Most mentioned on

29th April 2015

Total mentions


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