How to Make an Arab Headdress

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An Arab headdress can be created using a large cloth square and a few strategic folds.
An Arab headdress can be created using a large cloth square and a few strategic folds. (Image: BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images)

Traditional Arab headdresses are known as kaffiyehs. The colors and patterns that a headdress displays may be of religious, political or cultural significance. When visiting an Arab country or a person who is Arabic, it is important to understand the significance of the headdress to the Arab culture. If a person is required to wear a headdress, making one is simple. There are many ways to wrap an Arab headdress around the head, but the foundation for all the headdresses is a simple square.

Things You'll Need

  • 3-foot-by-3-foot cloth
  • 3-foot rope band
  • Mirror

Lay the cloth face down on a flat surface.

Fold the fabric into a triangle by bringing one corner to meet the corner that is diagonally opposite it.

Stand in front of a mirror.

Place the triangle on top of the head so that the folded edge of the triangle lies parallel to the hairline and covers 2 inches of the forehead.

Hold the left corner of the triangle in the left hand. Wrap the corner around the face so that the nose and mouth are covered and the corner falls against the right shoulder.

Roll the edge of the fabric covering the mouth and nose into a cylindrical shape until the roll reaches the face just above the eyes. Pull the roll tight across the head.

Pull the end of the roll toward the back of the head so that it meets the other corner of the triangle. Tie the end of the roll to the other corner of the triangle so that a knot is formed in the back of the head.

Push the fabric that hangs free in the back of the head underneath the rolled edge of fabric. The headdress is now attached to the head.

Pick up the decorative band and place the middle of it across the forehead. Wrap both ends of the rope around the head above the ears two times to secure the cloth portion of the headdress to the head. Tie the decorative band in the back of the head so that the ends hang loose in the back of the head.

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