September 10, 2018
Traditionally, the Djellaba is made of wool in simple earth tones as well as black, white, and light blue. In urban areas, more tailored Djellabas are worn, and blue is a favorite color, trimmed with red thread. For formal occasions, Djellabas are sometimes made of silk and ornately embroidered at the openings.
In North Africa today, lightweight cotton Djellabas have become popular, as well as slimmer and shorter shapes. Djellabas can be worn as shirt dresses (like a caftan) or as outerwear.
Our Djellaba pattern can be made in two lengths: ankle-length (traditional) or upper calf-length, and can be made with a zip front or as a pullover. You can add trim, such as ribbon, pompoms, or appliques - or let the fabric speak for itself. It is perfect as a beach cover up, robe, jacket, or simple dress!
Our suggested fabrics: Woven fabrics such as cotton and cotton blends (muslin, broadcloth, chambray); lightweight denim; rayon; linen; light to medium weight wool and wool blends; silk and silk blends.
PLEASE NOTE: Fabrics used as examples in blog may go out of stock from store. If link is invalid for specific product, there may be another fabric from the supplier that you can substitute. These suggestions are based on fabrics that are in stock at the time the blog post is written!
I've made our Moroccan Djellaba out of shot cotton, African mud cloth, rayon, terry cloth (like a bath towel robe), batiked cotton, and a striped cotton/poly blend. All were good and fun (though it was a bit tricky to sew the thick terry cloth I got).
We wanted to find some fabric suggestions for you, so we looked at our favorite fabric stores and found some that would be perfect for the Djellaba.
Stone Mountain and Daughter Fabrics also has mud cloth and baule cloth (hard to find)! These would make a shortened version of View C or D (the fabric comes in certain pre-determined sizes). One of our samples is made in a mud cloth and it wears really well!
Also, from Hart's is this woven ikat. Wouldn't this be amazing with some beautiful trim at the sleeves or neck line?
Vogue Fabrics has some beautiful wools and wool blends, and I thought this one was beautiful for an outer wear Djellaba with a traditional look (and with trim would be elegant).
You might want to consider trim for your Djellaba - making it truly unique. Some suggestions: pop-pom or ball fringe, metallic braided trim, a bright red (from Morocco) sfifa ribbon, and a petersham ribbon (or two) could be very pretty especially with some handworked beading or embroidery. Soutache in a pattern around the neck would also be beautiful.