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An inhomogeneous applied field can cause an instability in a strip domain that can be used for the controlled generation of bubble domains. These instabilities have been studied experimentally and theoretically by means of a variational calculation. Good agreement is obtained between wall shape calculations and experimental data. Predictions of cutting current as a function of strip width deviate, however, for widths larger than ∼5.5h due to the limitations of the model and the experimental conditions.