Entry: :: Basic Kaftan Dress Tutorial :: Friday, September 17, 2010

this year i didn't have the urge to shop for raya. until a week left of ramadhan, only bought 2 raya cookies during lelong (rm25 for 2) for my hometown in seremban, a 3.5 meters black satin crepe fabric and a three tone silk shawl. yeap, believe it or not that was all i bought for this year's raya. no ready made kurung / kebaya, no new shoes, no new casual outfits, no new handbag and even no raya cookies for our own home, nothing~!

despite that, on raya morning i was still one happy, proud lady because i was wearing my own handmade kaftan dress. that explains the 3.5 meters black satin crepe fabric, which i bought exactly 4 days before raya. i believe many ladies aware that kaftan dress is 'in' since last year. among the hits for this year's raya were kaftans by rizman ruzaini for their eid-ul-fitr collection and even worn by siti nurhaliza. they were adorable and pretty and no doubt, hefty in price too (price starts at rm2000 and above). even if the dress are not by designers, they are still surprisingly pricey. for an ordinary person like me, to own one is to produce one. hence, i decided to sew my own kaftan dress for hari raya. moreover, from observation making a simple kaftan is simple because you only need to sew straight lines at left and right of the fabric.

STEP 1 - see yourself in a kaftan dress
before the project begun, it is advisable to see how you look in a kaftan dress. i dragged bff to metrojaya to see myself because i didn't want to waste time and $$ if it doesn't suit me.

STEP 2 - buy 3.5 meters fabric
i chose a plain satin crepe because it is shiny, heavy and non-transparent. chiffon and normal crepe are also suitable but you'll need to wear inner because they are transparent. it's up to you to decide.

STEP 3 - fold the fabric and measure with your height. snip off the remaining.

STEP 4 - fold the fabric in the middle. iron to mark. this is crucial to make balance body sides and also for the neck hole.

STEP 5 - measure body width. i used my baju kurung as a template and mark the fabric accordingly.

STEP 6 - by folding the fabric in the middle, cut the bottom edges in slight curve. then, cut for neck hole and sew. you can opt for round neck or v-neck but i went for baju kurung neck.

STEP 7 - sew sides of the body.

STEP 8 - i made sleeves and add sponge padding on shoulders for my dress. this is optional though and if you don't need any sleeve or padding then your dress is actually done. just end it up with finishing stitches along sides of the fabric (jahit tepi). i sent my dress for 'jahit tepi' for only RM3 at seremban and it transformed the whole thing into a real dress. well, before that it looked like a large piece of fabric.

STEP 9 - use your creativity to decorate the dress with embellishment like beads, sequins, lace, etc. once it is done, voila~! you'll be as happy as me...

i would say you'll need 2 full days to complete a dress if you're not a pro like me. one day to sew and hem the dress and another day to decorate it with beads. surprise, surprise, cost for the whole thing is nearly RM100 depending on the fabric and decorations so you could save the extra hundreds $$ for matching shawl, handbag or shoe. it's totally worth it~!

roughly, expenditure for the above dress are:
  • fabric - RM68.25
  • sponge pads - RM2.50 / pair
  • black thread - RM0.80
  • 'jahit tepi' - RM3
  • chunky beads - RM15
  • TOTAL - RM89.55
here is a simple diagram for reference:

p/s: buzz me if you wanna know tips to make the dress fits according to your curve.

keywords: kaftan raya, kaftan for dinner, kaftan diy, how to sew kaftan dress, cara jahit kaftan


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