Madagascar Lamba Costume
Traditional dress in Madagascar is to wear a “lamba”. Which is two matching pieces of fabric that women wear – one around the waist or chest and one around the head or shoulders.
- 2-3 Yards of Fabric
- 2 yards x 18″ of Fabric for headwrap
You can use old sheets. We found our fabric in the clearance section of our local fabric store. Cut a piece of fabric long enough to reach from armpits to ankles. 1.5 yard – 2 yards wide. . If you don’t have enough fabric, you can wrap around the waist to the ankles. Traditionally, sides are sewn together to make a large tube to step into. Or you can gather and knot or tuck in like a towel making pleats under the armpits. We skipped the sewing part and just wrapped it like a towel, making pleats so it does not fit too tightly.
The second piece should be about 2 yards x 1 yard but we skimped a bit on the size. It can be worn like a shawl or wrapped around the head. Here is one way to make a head wrap but you can wear it any way that works for you.
How to Make a Head Wrap
Many women around the world wear head wraps. In Madagascar a piece of fabric called a Kisaly is wrapped around the head or worn over the shoulders.
- Place the fabric over the top of your head. Make one side 1′ longer than the other.
- Bring both sides behind your head, crossing at the back of the neck and over your shoulders to your front.
- Twist the longer side, bringing it up and over the top of your head.
- Tie both sides together.
Wrap ends around your head and tuck in.