How to Make Modest Clothes
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Back to types of Niqab
Simple Elastic Niqaab
- For a single layer niqaab:
Cut a rectangle of fabric 13"x17".
- Hem the two long sides and one
- Fold the unhemmed sided under
1/4", fold again 1/2" and stitch close to the edge of the fold.
- Cut a length of 1/4" wide
elastic, long enough to go around your head.
- Pass the elastic through the 1/2"
hem of the niqaab.
- Overlap the two ends of the
elastic and stitch together firmly using tiny zigzag stitches.
- **Note** Instead of elastic, ties
could be added to either side of the niqaab for tying behind the head.
- Cut a 4" wide rectangle. long
enough to go around your head like a band, with a couple of inches overlapping
- or if you prefer, make the band long enough to tie behind your head.
- Press a 1/4" inch hem along both
long edges of the rectangle band. Fold the band in half, lengthwise, wrong
sides (pressed hems) together.
- Cut a rectangle large enough to
cover the face. Double if material is thin. Hem.
- Find the center of the band and
the center of the face cover. Match.
- Pin the face cover in the slit of
the band (i.e. between the folded hems)
- Leave an opening for the eyes.
- Sew the two pieces of the niqaab
together. Sewing from one side of the eye opening out the the end and from the
other side of the eye opening out to the end. Refer to diagram
- **Note** This seam allowance
needs to be very slight, otherwise the space for the eyes will not stay open.
- Add snaps or velcro on the
overlap of the headband, to close. (unless it was made long enough to tie
Niqaab with Eye Cover
- This is basically the same as the
headband niqaab, except that a thin netting or mesh type fabric is stitched to
the headband. This can stay atop the head for better visibility or flipped
down to conceal the eyes.
- Cut the rectangle headband about
4"inches wide x the length needed to go around the head.
- Press a 1/4" hem along both long
edges of the headband.
- Fold the
headband in half, lengthwise, wrong sides together.
- Stitch the face cover to the
bottom folded edge of the headband (with a slight seam allowance) leaving an
opening slit for the eyes.
- Pin the eye mesh into the open
seam at the top of the headband, (i.e. between the folded hems), stitch the
seam all the way along the headband.
How to Make a Chador - Prayer Outfit
- This is a chador works great as a
prayer outfit, using lightweight cotton material; or as a general everyday
outfit, using lightweight silky polyester…or other fabric of your choice. Use
60"inch wide material.
- Measure from your forehead, down
your back, to the floor. Purchase twice this amount of fabric.
- Fold fabric in half, right sides
together, with fold at top.
- Use pins to mark points A-C,
approximately 12"inches apart.
- To find the appropriate length
for lines A-B and C-D. Measure from the top of your head down to your wrist.
- Place your hand at the edge of
the fabric and pin on either side to mark the opening for your hands [Points
B-E and D-F].
- Cut as indicated by the solid
lines in the Diagram.
- Cut open the fold between A-C.
- Cut the bottom with a large
- The front of the chador needs to
be cut shorter than the back. Cut only the top layer of fabric.
- Cut a slight curve between A-C,
for a face opening. Cut only the top layer of fabric.
- Sew along lines A-B and C-D.
- Sew down from E-X and F-X.
Leaving the opening for your hands. Fold out.
- Try on the chador and check the
length. You should be able to pull the chador over your forehead to cover you
- Hem the raw edges and opening as
- You could attach a piece of
elastic or binding to either side of the face (Points A-C) and tie these
behind your head to prevent the chador from slipping.
- You could also make a triangular
underscarf from the excess material to provide more coverage for the forehead.
- Purchase .7m (1yd) of fabric.
- Cut a large square of fabric:
70cm (27") square.
- Fold the square in half
diagonally, wrong sides together,pin in several places to hold in place.
- Stitch across the front,
approximately 2cm (1/2") from the folded edge. You could use a decorative
stitch in matching thread or a simple straight stitch.
- Stitch again 15cm (6") back from
the folded edge.
- Serge the raw edges or use a
simple zig-zag stitch.
- Purchase .5m (1/2yd) of fabric.
You will also need a piece of 1/4"wide elastic, 13cm (5")long.
- Cut two rectangles with the
- 34cm x 50cm [13"x19"] This is
the front piece.
- 28cm x 40cm [11"x16"] This is
the back piece.
- Fold the larger rectangle in half
(right sides together). Stitch around the edges leaving an opening for
turning. Diagram One. Turn right side out, fold in the raw edges of the
opening and stitch closed.
- Fold the smaller rectangle in
half and repeat the same procedure as above. Diagram One.
- To stitch the front and back
together Refer to Diagram Two.
- Find the centre of the front
and the center of the back, mark with a pin.
- Pin the two pieces, seam edges
together, matching centre points.
- The easiest way to sew is from
the centre, down to the end of the back piece, then from the centre again
down to the other end. *Don't fret about accuracy, just eyeball
- Place the piece of elastic along
the folded edge of the back. Stretch it fit the width of the back piece. Hold
the elastic in place at either end and stitch in place with tiny ziz-zag
stitches. This will gather the back.
- See Side-View Diagram of
- Place the "bonnet" on your head
and tie the two long end at the back of your neck.
Tube Style This style of scarf works
best if the fabric is a bit stretchy.
- Purchase.5m (1/2yd) of fabric.
- Cut a rectangle 56cm x 48cm
- Fold back one long edge (wrong
sides together) 12cm (4.5").Diagram One.
- Use a decorative stitch with
matching thread: stitch 1/2" away from the folded edge.
- Stitch along the first raw edge
with a straight stitch.
- Hem the bottom raw edge as
- Fold in half, right sides
together, Diagram Two.
- Stitch the vertical seam to form
a tube. Fold out.
- Wear this underscarf like a
headband, with all of your hair in the "tube".
- I usually pull it down around my
neck, then pull it back so my hair is swept off my face and neck.
Instructions for Making a Basic
- 115cm (45") wide fabric will give
you a khimar that's anywhere from wrist-length to finger-tip length, depending
on your height.
- Purchase 2.5m (3yards) of fabric.
- Soft, lightweight, cotton
material works best. If it's a bit stretchy, that's even better.
Single-knits (a.k.a. "T-Shirt material") work great. You could also use
lightweight silky polyester.
- Fold in half, right sides
together, with the fold at the top.
- If the material is silky, pin in
several places to prevent shifting.
- Referring to the diagram: cut a
large smooth curve from the bottom right to the top left corner. Points A-B.
- Start by cutting a straight
line, parallel to the raw edge, curve the line toward Point B, and end with
a straight line, parallel to the left edge. This will ensure that the front
and back of the khimar is straight and not in a "V" cut.
- In order to make the front and
back even, start Point "A", about 10cm (4") from the corner.
- Sew up the front of the khimar,
from Points A-C. Leaving the rest open for your face.
- Try on the khimar. The face
opening will probably need adjusting. It should fit snug under your chin.
- Hem the face opening and lower
edges of the khimar as desired.
Use white cotton fabric to make a
comfortable prayer outfit. Follow the instructions above for making the khimar.
Purchase 4m (4yd) of eyelet (or other cotton) lace. Stitch the lace along the
entire bottom of the khimar, before sewing up the front.
When you sew the front [from Points A-C] make the face opening small so that the
khimar will cover your hair in the front and you won't need to wear an