Style

How to: Make Your Own Kaftan!

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I love kaftans – there’s something so effortlessly glamorous about them. They’re also one of the most comfortable garments a girl can wear. Even on your laziest day, lounging in a kaftan makes you feel fabulous!

Whether you’re in your living room, by the pool, or entertaining guests, there’s a kaftan for every occasion. So why not customize yours by sewing them yourself? It’s actually pretty simple: on the scale of difficulty, if hemming a pair of jeans is a “one” and sewing a couture dress is a “ten,” making your own kaftan is about a two or three.

So, here’s how to get started!

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How to Make A Basic Kaftan

What You’ll Need

  • 2-3 yards of fabric (cotton or satin are good choices)
  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors
  • Straight pins
  • Sewing machine (you can hand-sew if you prefer)
  • Sequins, a belt, or embellishments of your choice

 

What To Do

  1. Select a fabric that is between 45 – 60 inches wide (if you are petite, 30 – 40 inches).
  2. Fold the length of the fabric in half and put it on a hard surface to smooth out any wrinkles in the fabric
  3. Measure your neck loosely (remember that your head needs to fit through the neck hole), and decide what kind of neckline you want (V-shaped, square, boat neck etc…)
  4. Based on your neck measurement, measure, then cut out the neckline from the center of the folded side of the fabric (be sure you cut it out in the exact center of the folded edge, or the sleeves of your caftan will be different lengths).
  5. Once your neckline is cut out, smooth out the fabric again, and, starting at the edge opposite the folded side, pin the sides of the fabric together, placing a pin about every inch until you are 4-6 inches away from the fold at the top (the 4-6 inches at the top will be the sleeves)
  6. Once you’ve pinned the sides of the kaftan, sew each side with your sewing machine, or by hand if you’re feeling patient!
  7. Add sequins, beads, a belt, or whatever embellishments you’d like!

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Now, try on your new kaftan! You can crop the bottom if you think it would look better as a tunic, or leave it long.

Where would you show off your handmade kaftan?

  • Candy Whiting

    TORI!!! You should include supplemental instructions on an asymetrical caftan like the one you are wearing in this photo, because it’s beautiful!!!!!

  • Patrice Armour

    I am SO excited that you posted this! I was just looking for this photo last night and trying to find one for myself!

  • Jeanne Coffey

    Thank you so much Tori! You are so amazing and the caftan you are wearing is so gorgeous!! I would LOVE to make my own but I do not own a sewing machine and hand sewing…well I am not so sure, LOL. I am in total agreement with Candy’s post! The neck line I would want is the one in that picture. Also could you tell us where you purchase your caftans? Or do you make them all yourself? If you do thats another business venture for you girlfriend!

  • Amy Harrison

    This sounds like something even I can sew, and I can do straight stitches and that’s about it at the moment.

    Divine!!! Another trip to the fabric store for me!

  • Richel Newborg

    The one you are wearing in that photo is AMAZING!!! WOW!!! I think I would wear one any place! They look so comfortable! I think I might have to try to make one, I have a beautiful hot pink fabric that I bought just because it was beautiful but had no idea of what to do with it! Great idea!

  • Cari

    I love this idea!

  • Candie Querbach

    It’s true. The one you are wearing in the photo is aMAZing. I like the idea of making my own though. I am always seeing great fabrics and trying to figure out what I could do with them if I bought it and now I know! I feel like a caftan would be great for cocktailing on the rooftop of our building. There are a group of us who live in the building who get together every couple of weeks and a caftan would KILL. Can’t wait to give it a try! :)

  • doreen porzio

    All I can say right now is I think u look absolutely beautiful in ur Caftan! I remember that from ur wedding renewals!! U were breathtaking, when u walked out in that!!…. Stella looks so adorable in the one you just made for her!! I’m not much of a sewer, but it doesn’t seem too complicated!! Love the headscarf you made for Stella as well!! Sooo cute!! Stella wears it well!! You are just tooooo talented girl!! Amazing!! Love!!! smiley-wink.gif

  • Suraya Zakaria

    LOVE YOUR CAFTAN

  • Hilary Mouat

    Hey tori!!!

    I absolutly love that you did this post :) bacuse I have wanted to know how to make one ever since I saw your one at your vow renewal.

    I do have a question though, I was wondering were did you get your caftan?

    Thanks a million,

    Hilary :)

  • Stephanie Tedder

    Tori,

    I love your caftan!! Beautiful!! Please share with us where you found it. Thank you and thank you for ediTORIal I love it!!

  • Monique Limon

    I so love the caftan. Tori knows how to make anything work. I hope to try making one this weekend. After then while wearing my new caftan I plan on sitting outside with a glass of wine and listening to music with the hubby and my pet Pug “Lilly.”

  • Tammy McKenna

    Beautiful.

  • Julie Murphy

    Wow! That is gorgeous! Who is the caftan in the pic made by? I can barely sew a button on but I can shop…no problem!

  • victoria silva

    Love that spalsh of green in the material…really pretty!

    Victoria Silva

  • Heather Kerley

    love the longer one! how do I make that version? just wondering but does Tori ever comment back… I don’t ever see a response??

  • Michelle Ford

    You always look amazing!

  • Oksana Avila

    I love kaftans but I don’t think they are easy to make. Kaftan is one of the most popular items you will see a celebrity wear on vacations. They look glamorous but very easy to wear. It always depends on the fabric you work with. I find it very difficult to work with silk and much easier with cotton. And I know what I’m talking about because I make them. Check my resort wear collection at http://www.solemareny.com