How to make a greek chiton

Written by angela neal | 13/05/2017
How to make a greek chiton
Learn how to make a traditional Greek chiton with minimal sewing. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Make a Greek "chiton," or tunic the way the Ancient Greeks did and wear it to a costume party or toga party. Traditional chitons were worn by both men and women, were made from linen or silk and required a large piece of fabric, so a plain bed sheet is ideal for making this type of dress. Use a simple sewing stitch and safety pins to form the tunic and use certain items that you probably already have in your home.

Measure and cut a linen sheet to twice the width of your arms outstretched and as long as your height from your shoulders to the floor. Fold the cut fabric in half width-wise and pin the open side together along the edge. Leave the top and bottom of the folded fabric open.

Sew 1/4 inch away from the edge that you pinned, using a straight stitch with thread that is the same colour as the linen. Start and complete the line of stitches by going back and forth in one spot about 10 times. Trim the excess thread and turn the fabric right-side-out to hide the stitches.

Measure to the middle of one of the open ends and measure out from the middle 6 inches in both directions. Slip a safety pin or decorative brooches through the edges of the fabric at these two points to make a centre opening to slip your head through.

Measure about 3 inches away from the sides of the centre opening in either direction and pin the edges together with safety pins. Keep measuring and pinning every 3 inches until you reach the edges of the top side of the fabric. This creates a pinned top that has openings along your arms.

Slip your head through the centre opening to put the chiton on when you're ready to wear it. Let the pinned edge drape along your arms, gather the fabric together at your waist and spread your arms to make sure you have enough slack in the fabric to move your arms. Tie the fabric at your waist with a decorative rope or belt to close the chiton.

Things you need

  • Linen sheet
  • Tape measure
  • Scissors
  • Needle
  • Thread
  • Brooch pins or
  • Safety pins
  • Decorative rope or
  • Belt

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