I loovvee this abaya a lot, so I thought why not share the love? :) It’s one of the easiest abayas to make, but because of how awesome it looks at the end, people assume it’s hard. The only tough part is that there is a lot of fabric…and I mean a lot of fabric, so that get’s overwhelming
a bit a lot. But don’t worry, take deep breaths, be confident, and begin making your butterfly abaya =]
Now as you can see from the pictures I’ve made two different types of abayas(even though there’s 3 pics). The first two are the belted butterfly abayas and the last is the regular/plain one. All of ‘em are pretty awesome so I’ll be showing you guys how to do both inshaAllah.
There’s a bit of math before we start, so here goes:
The amount of fabric you’ll need will be based on your height. Have someone measure you from middle of your shoulder to your feet. If you are for example, 5 ft 4″ the length you’ll need is around 54″. The amount of fabric you’ll need is 54inches x 2=108″ or 3yards. (I suggest getting 3 and 1/4 yards or more.) So the formula is: your full length x two divided by 36 inches. (36 inches =1 yard)
-Around 3-4 yards of fabric depending on your height. The width of the fabric must be atleast 58″ or 60″ so remember to ask for this width when buying fabric.
-1/4 yard contrasting fabric, only if you are making the belted abaya.
- 1 inch/2 inch Elastic
-Bias tape or you can also use left over fabric to make your own
-sewing machine and sewing stuff
-Have someone measure you from wrist to wrist, add an inch and a half to this and write this down.
-Have someone measure your full length from middle of your shoulder, over your bust down till your toes.
Let’s get started:
**Click the pics to make them bigger**
**Read everything through before making this**
Since there’s a lot of fabric involved I thought it’d be better to show you all how to make this abaya through paper instead of actual fabric.
1) This is just a reference to your fabric when it is laid flat.
2) Fold your fabric length wise. Use pins to secure the ends so that they do not move.
3) Fold your fabric width wise and secure all loose ends with pins. Now you should have two folded sides and two loose end sides.
4) Draw a shape like this on your fabric. (click the pic to make bigger) The width on top is half of your wrist-wrist measurement. Your arm opening should be around 7-8″. (For two of the belted abayas I had to extend the arm since my fabric wasn’t long enough, that’s why you see a different color on the arms.) Don’t worry if isn’t exactly like mine, it’s okay, the awesomeness of this abaya is that it gives you leeway for mistakes (and my abayas are far from perfect)
5) Now make the neckline. The width is 3″ and the depth is 1″. After this, say bismillah and start cutting. If you didn’t leave allowance for your sewing while you drew the shape, it’s okay, because you can just cut 0.5″ outside the lines and it’ll be okay.
6) Open up your entire abaya…it should look like this
7) Fold this in half now, make sure your arms match up. Use pins to stop the fabric from moving. Now measure out a 5.5″ deep neckline and cut away. This will be the front of your abaya.
Now if you are making a plain/regular butterfly abaya, pat yourself on the back, you are basically done cutting, move on to step 16. :) If you are making a belted one move on to the next step.
Belted Butterfly Abaya:
This is the back of the belted abaya. As you can see the back is super loose and you can’t see any belt. Now how do we do this?
8) Measure your waist and divide this by two. This will be the part of the belt that actually shows, the elastic part will be hidden. Now, where you’ve marked your front neckline open your abaya and measure down 15″ from the fold, mark this down by drawing a line all the way across the fabric. Since we want the belt to be centered, find the center of this line, mark that down. Now take your half waist measurement and divide this in half. From the center of the line we just drew, mark your half-half waist measurements on each side. Take a min to decide how wide you want your belt to be. Let’s say 2.75″, so just draw a line 2.75″ on each side.
9) Take scrap fabric, and turn em into squares/rectangles. They should be around 4″ (if you used 2.75″ for your belt)
10) Turn the edges of squares over twice to hem each side. Press/iron in place. Then sew the square pieces to ensure there is no loose threads.
11) Mark 2.75″ on your sewn squares and draw a box. so like 2.75″ x 0.25″.
12) Match the boxes on each of your belt “openings”. pin to place and sew the 2.75″x0.25″ onto the abaya. After sewing it, cut the center, without cutting through the seams. fold your boxes to the inside of the abaya, press into place. Now top stitch to hold everything together. Now you have two holes for your belt!
13) To make the actual belt we need the contrasting fabric. Cut out a front belt half the size of your waist and make it 6″ wide. Then cut out a back belt a few inches more than your actual half waist measurement and make it 6″ wide. Fold each of these pieces so that they are now 3″ wide. Then sew the rough edges together to create two tubes. Turn them right side out and iron in place. Now take some elastic and put in inside the back belt. Sew a little bit, and then start stretching the elastic as you sew until you get to the end of the back belt.
14) Sew one side of the front and back belt pieces together.
15) Put it the belt through one of the holes you’ve made, so that the elastic part is on the inside. Now put the other part of the front belt through the other hole. Sew it onto the other side of the back belt piece. wohoo your belt piece is done!
*16) Sorry I don’t have any pictures for the actual sewing since I can’t sew paper ;) But trust me this part is super easy. You have the option of making the arm not so big…To do this you can take some elastic and make a casing as you hem the arm openings. Here is a tutorial on elastic casings. Just use a thin elastic piece. Or you can go the simpler route, just hem the arm openings w/o an elastic. Done! After this match up the arms together and sew each of the sides down. Then hem the bottom, by turning over the fabric twice. Lastly for your neckline do this with bias tape.
***Overlock/zigzag all the rough edges. Press everything in place.
You are done! :)
~Few tips: Since there is a lot of fabric, to keep your stitches from stretching don’t let the fabric drag as you sew. When you wear the belted abaya, put the belt of the abaya on first and then the sleeves.
I hope you guys find this tutorial to be helpful. If you have any questions do let me know.
As always, hit the like/follow/share button if you enjoyed this. Have an awesome day everyone! :)