How to Make Keffiyeh Scarves

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Making your own keffiyeh is simple and cheap.
Making your own keffiyeh is simple and cheap. (Image: BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images)

A keffiyeh is a headscarf traditionally worn by men in Arab nations. The keffiyeh comes in many patterns and colors, most of which are symbolic of geographic areas or political groups. There are many ways to wrap and wear a keffiyeh, depending on your personal preference. Making a keffiyeh is a fairly simple process, which nearly anyone with basic sewing skills can achieve. With just a few simple steps, you can make a keffiyeh and be wearing it the same afternoon.

Things You'll Need

  • Cotton fabric
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread
  • Sewing machine (optional)

Determine the size you want the keffiyeh to be. Keffiyehs are squares. Most are either 4 feet or 5 feet in diameter.

Purchase fabric, making sure you are aware of the significance of various colors. The most common color is white. Black and white checks are a symbol of Palestine, and red and white checks are a symbol of Jordan. Purchase fabric that is twice the length of your completed keffiyeh. For example, if you want a 5 foot square keffiyeh, you will need to purchase 120 inches of fabric.

Cut your fabric in half crosswise. You should now have two pieces of fabric the length you want the finished keffiyeh to be.

Take one of the pieces and cut it in half lengthwise.

Attach one of the half pieces of fabric to either side of your larger fabric piece. Holding right sides together, sew the pieces of fabric onto the sides of the larger piece, leaving a .25-inch seam allowance.

Trim the complete piece of fabric to the size you want the finished keffiyeh to be, plus .5 inch. Fold down .25 inch all the way around the keffiyeh and sew.

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