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How To: Recycle Your Hijab, Eco Muslim Style

We live in wardrobes of excess clothing, accessories and fabric. It can't be helped really, changing trends mean we want the next X Y Z ...

We live in wardrobes of excess clothing, accessories and fabric. It can't be helped really, changing trends mean we want the next X Y Z of obsolete product design. BUT, instead of opting for the consumerist option this season, go with The Eco Muslim lifestyle and recycle your old-ish clothing into new-ish hijabs (headscarves/khimaar).

All you need to do is pull out a sewing machine, grab a pair of fabric scissors (they're sharper) and use a tape measure. I have yards of fabric stored in boxes, used for textile design (I was a student) and for experimenting with embroidery techniques.


This gorgeous platinum-coloured fabric - originally a large wrap over - was cut to size and stitched to make a square headscarf. 

Lay the fabric flat, use measurements of your existing headscarves and cut the material to size, rolling the corner of the fabric as you snip for control. Larger square scarves are best at around 48" squared. Keep a seam allowance of 2cm.


Before hemming (sewing) the edges turn them twice to create a 1cm fold. If you're using an overlocking machine the edges don't need folding as they're not frayed very much - overlocking neatens the edge and trims excess fabric that wasn't cut straight. Thread the machine in a "Zed" or an "N" loop by following the manual (ask your aunts) and in a matching colour to the scarf. Sew straight seams on the inner edge of the fold from end to end.



The completed scarf, with matching pins and things.

Cut off loose thread, give it a quick iron. All done. My "upcycled" hijab.

There's actually a trend of "upcycling" headscarves, where sisters trade scarves at a "hijab party" or sew old pieces of printed fabrics into new headscarves - apparently one of the terms for this is "strip hijab" ! Happy sewing.

Peace and respect,
Zaufishan, the eco muslim

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  1. MominuzzamanMomin29 May 2013, 19:20:00

    Essentially first class site, thank you for this post. Hijabs Hijabs HijabsHijabsHijabsHijabs Islamic hijabHijabs The Finest Islamic Store in North America. Islamic Products and Clothing, Hijabs, Thobes, Abayas, Hijabs, Islamic Books and more. hijaab, Islamic hijab, jilbab, jelbab, books, muslim clothing, modest clothing.

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  2. Great idea - and I loved the gorgeous metallic sheen on yours. Hadn't heard of strip hijabs, but I think it's a fabulous concept.

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