Slot seam (or peek-a-boo seam)

A slot seam allows you to add a little peek-a-boo of fun to your sewing. The seam can lie closed, but it pops open just a bit to reveal another fabric inside. Use a simple contrasting solid, or a whole different print. This can be incorporated into clothing really easily!


(Click fabrics for direct links for purchase at Warehouse Fabrics Inc.)

Gingham orange 1″

Gingham orange 1/16″

The process

I’m just doing a sample for you and not a real project, so here are my two pieces of fabric and my “peek-a-boo” strip.Your strip will be as wide as your seam allowance x2 and either as long as your entire seam or you can just make it go part way up the seam.
Put your fabric pieces right-sides together and baste a seam at your seam allowance. So I set my machine to the longest stitch and did a 1/2″ seam allowance from end to end. That’s what you do if your slot seam will extend the entire seam.
If you just want a partial seam, sew with a shorter stitch length at the tops and bottoms of the seam, and reinforce by backstitching. Do the long, basting stitch only where you will do the peek-a-boo stitch. I have marked mine with a blue mark and above and below those marks I have a regular stitch and between them I have basting stitches.
Press the entire seam allowance open on the wrong side.
My peek-a-boo strip was 1″ wide because I did a 1/2″ seam allowance. I used a fabric glue stick to hold it in place where I wanted it.
Now flip it over to the right side and stitch 1/4″ from the seamline, where it is basted closed. To make this easier, I used my 1/4″ quilting foot.

If your slot seam will extend the entire seam, just go from end to end. If you want a partial seam, mark the start and stop points and cross over the seam to form a rectangle. (See below)

Here’s how it looks now. I know that brown thread looks awful, but I used it so that you could see my stitching.By the way, I don’t know why it took me so long to figure it out, but anytime you’re top-stitching, use a longer stitch length. It looks infinitely better than a smaller stitch length. It’s smoother and you get fewer crooked-looking stitches, especially in heavier, more tightly-woven fabrics.
This is how it looks from the wrong side.
Start ripping out the basting stitches to reveal the fabric underneath.
Peak-a-boo! Cute fabric, I see you!(I watch too many kids shows.)