From handbags and jackets to trousers and boots, it really is impossible to imagine life without zippers. They are so widespread it is easy to take them for granted. This is where Zipper Day comes along to remind us of the origin and history of this truly omnipresent invention.

The exact birthday of the zipper is debated, but Zipper Day is traditionally celebrated on April 29. On that date in 1913, Swedish-American scientist and inventor Gideon Sundback received a patent for a curious contraption he called “hook-less fastener”. Although similar inventions had been around since the 1850s, his version is widely accepted as the first modern zipper.

The continuous fastening line found numerous applications and grew in popularity, also thanks to the US Army who stepped in as an early adopter. Functional, fashionable, infinitely adjustable – these qualities of Sundback’s design have helped popularize the invention and practically make every day Zipper Day.

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