How to Make a Keffiyeh

Written by sarah meem
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How to Make a Keffiyeh
Keffiyeh scarves are sold in many clothing stores. (Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

The keffiyeh is an Arab headdress originally worn by farmers and rural workers to protect the head and face from the sun in the summer and the cold in the winter. The keffiyeh can be made with red or black thread on cloth. The scarf has become quite fashionable in recent years and is worn by fashionable hipsters as a neck scarf. Many have come to associate the keffiyeh with the Palestinian movement, as many Palestinian freedom fighters wear the keffiyeh around their face to hide their identity. If you are interested in having your own, but do not want to buy one, you can make one in a couple of easy steps.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Square cotton blend white cloth, 3-by-3 feet
  • Black or red fabric paint
  • Pencil
  • Long ruler

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  1. 1

    Spread out the white cloth flat on a table and tape down the sides so it will not move.

  2. 2

    Outline with a pencil a square within the cloth that starts two inches from the edge of the cloth on every side. Use a ruler to measure the distance and draw straight lines. Then, within the square you just made, use the ruler and pencil to trace out criss-cross pattern, with the lines an inch apart. At each intersection outline a small square that is a quarter of an inch on each side.

  3. 3

    Use the fabric paint to thicken the outlined criss cross pattern and fill in the squares.

  4. 4

    Draw a half-inch thick line with the fabric paint around the square, in the 2-inch space.

  5. 5

    Leave the cloth to dry for as long as the paint package recommends.

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