How to slash and insert fabric or what I learned at Quilt Guild

I have mentioned before that I love my Modern Quilters guild. Everyone is very helpful, unselfish and sharing. Last week one of our members, Anita, taught us how to slash and insert fabric. The trick to Anita’s method is water soluble glue, your choice of brand.

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I am working on two Halloween quilts for my grandchildren. I want to have a block in each quilt with either a Z or an H so there will be no confusion as to who owns each quilt. I decided to make them funky.

I started with green polka dot fabric and a black on black cat fabric. I slit the fabric apart randomly. Then I sewed in two black strips.

You can tell that my inserts were not that accurate by looking at the bottom. However, I had made the overall piece I started with bigger than it needed to be. I knew I could trim it.slash re 2

I now wanted to add in the middle diagonal piece to complete the Z. I did not want to use my “hope it lines up” method. Nope, I had a new technique to try.

I had the black piece but I was lucky it worked out.

It is always better to cut bigger, longer and wider when inserting. Why? Because it’s really easy to trim.

Scissors are great little inventions!

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Step One

Fold the fabric over a quarter inch.


Line up the strip on the right side. slash re 4

Step Two

Stitch right sides together, quarter inch seam.

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Step Three

Use the water soluble glue of your choice, Elmer’s school glue works great.

Apply a small amount all along the folded edge of strip you just stitched.

Step Fourslash re 6

Fold the glue side carefully over onto the right side.

Finger press and then press with iron.

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Step Five

Flip the block over.

Cut the seam you sewed open towards the glued side.

Use the stitch line as your guide.

Make sure by feeling for bulk of glued down strip.

Step Six

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Open up the seam

Sew along the press line.

The glue basting should keep the seam in place.

slash re 9Step Seven

Flip over


Trimslash re 10

And your fancy insert is in and perfect.

The glue will wash out.

You are all done with this block. Now you can add it to your other Halloween blocks and try to figure out how you are going to put this Halloween block together.

Thanks so much, Anita M., for teaching us how to do this. I am thrilled with the funky look.  I can’t wait to finish the quilt.

But first,  I am going to make an H block for Henry!

Sew happy!

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I made a bunch of Halloween blocks last year that I am using here. You can check out that post by clicking here.

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    Kathy Mathews

    My passions are quilting and sewing. Add to that French, Spanish, books, swimming, travels, new restaurants, yoga and chocolate and you have me. All of these are best shared with family and friends. Except for chocolate, don't touch my chocolate. You can email me at

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