How to sew a shoulder-style abaya

  • With your arms at your sides, have someone measure from one wrist to the other going across the back of the shoulders.
  • Purchase twice this amount of 60" wide fabric.
  • Fold the left and right edges so that they meet in the center.
  • Pin in several places to hold the fabric in place.
  • Referring to the diagram, cut a V-neck in the top layer of fabric.
  • Stitch the seam line across the top.
  • At the upper left and right corners, cut openings for your hands.
  • The center seam of the abayah may be closed in several ways:
    • The easiest thing to do is simply stitch the entire seam all the way up to the neck.
    • You could also stitch from the bottom, half-way up, then insert a long zipper, or even several snaps or velcro.
  • Cut the bottom of the abayah, large and round.
  • Finish the neck opening, and cuffs with satin ribbon or bias binding.
  • Hem the bottom.