Tribal Wear

To be fully effective all participants including adult staff will dress in Book of Mormon tribal wear worn on the outside of their clothing. Each person needs 2 pieces of tribal wear (Including all youth, tribe leaders, camp directors, bishops and all who come into camp!) Instructions are provided here on the web and in a printable pdf file for easy download and printing.

• Main tribal wear must be worn at all times during Quest.
• Tribal wear should be large enough to wear over own clothes and possibly over a sweatshirt or
coat at night. (You should wear a shirt - no tank tops - and long shorts or pants underneath.)
• Basic tribal wear can be with or without sleeves and should be tunic style.
• Can add contrasting self-binding fabric, decorative braid, trim, beads, tassels,
etc. as desired to personalize your clothing.

Printable Instructions (.pdf format)

These instruction are available as acrobat reader format (.pdf files). The reader is a simple to use and free program that can be downloaded from the Acrobat site. Many computers come with this program installed, if you have problems please follow this link to the acrobat site and download the necessary files.


On-line Instructions

1. CHOOSE FABRIC: Suggested Fabrics: cotton, crinkled cottons, cotton blends, with solids or strips - Suggest earth tone, warmer colors, small paisley like. Avoid bright, flowery, or big patterns.
FABRIC REQUIREMENTS: 45” fabric - Measure from top of shoulder to mid-knee, add 2 inches and double. If you want a sleeve, include the number of inches for the length you want plus one inch, or you can use a twin size flat sheet. Hint: 4.5 inches = 1/8th yard; 9 inches = ¼ yard; 18 inches = ½ yard; 27 inches = ¾ yard; 36 inches = yard.

2. PREPARE FABRIC: Wash and dry fabric, iron if necessary.

3. CUT AND SEW TRIBAL WEAR: Tribal Wear Instructions – simple and quick – male or female
Measure chest or hip - whichever is largest. Divide measurement in half – add about 7 or 8 inches. It doesn’t hurt to have a few more inches. The drapeness can be fixed with a belt or sash.

1. Fold fabric in half lengthwise (fold will go across top of shoulders). No pattern needed for main body. Cut desired width and then desired length.

2. Neck opening: Cut neck opening on fold equal distance from center front. Use one of the following variations as indicated below. (Hint: Go easy, neck opening gets big quick! Guidelines – measure around largest part of head - divide by 2 – subtract 1 ½ inches.) Finish neck edge by turning under 1/4” or sew bias tape around edge.

3. Neck variations (choose one):
a) simply cut along fold line (finish edges)
b) cut gentle scoop along fold line – both sides or just front (finish edges)
c) cut line along fold then on front only cut out “V” (finish edges)
d) cut along fold, then cut slit down center front approx. 4-6” (finish edges)

4. Leave open hole from top of shoulder to under arm about 13” for smaller women/men and 15” for larger women/men on front and back of main body piece. Sew side seam from bottom of arm hole to end before hemming edges. Note hem variations “a” and “b” below. Hem edges.

5. Side Seams: With right sides together stitch side seams stopping where armhole opening is already finished or for sleeve option continue right on completing underarm seam.

6. Hem variations (choose one) This will keep fabric from unraveling and look like a cool Nephite design:
a) Hem main body piece by turning under 1/4” twice (roll hem) and stitch.
b) Fold hem over/turn rough edges inside and use zig-zag stitch or other Latin type stitch to sew around top of dress where hole for head is and around armpits.
c) Cut fabric and fringe bottom by cutting slits in hem by 1 or 2 inches apart. (May want to sew a
straight stitch just above wear slits stop to prevent further fraying.)
Note: This Basic Tribal Wear pattern has a “drop shoulder” look. This means that the sleeve/shoulder seam isn’t right up on the shoulder, but is down part way between the shoulder and elbow. You can gather along the fold line to bring that line up for another look.

1. Fold fabric in half lengthwise. Decide if you want to use the entire
width which will include sleeve length. The arm hole will be approximately
10 to 10 ½ inches long with at least 8 to 8 ½ inches over for the underarm cut. Curving downward, cut to the length desired. (For larger size add an inch or two to arm length – widen the armhole an inch or so – curve in about 9 inches – then cut to desired length. Before cutting check to see if you have enough width in the chest area.)

2. Follow instructions 2-5 above.

1. Decide desired size. Cut the front and back pieces. If using sleeve, cut this also. Sew shoulder seams of front and back pieces together. Find middle of sleeve and pin to shoulder seam. Matching all other dots, sew sleeve to front and back pieces. Then sew side seams and sleeve seams together. Choose desired neck variation. Hem neck, sleeve, and bottom edges as desired.

COMMERCIAL PATTERNS: (Adjust sleeve to desired length and tunic to mid-knee length.)
McCall’s 2339 – Uses facing’s and sleeve.
Simplicity 2974 bin 28 – Uses facing’s and sleeve.

• Sash or belt. You can have it just long enough to go around waist once or a longer sash can crisscross over chest as well as go around waist, or go twice around waist, around waist and up and over one shoulder, etc. Can use material, heavy cording, braided leather, rope, etc.

• Head Piece: No head piece at all, head band only, turban type hat (no ball caps), or head band securing a scarf or veil type covering. (scarf is about 1 yard; draped scarf is about 1 ½ - 2 yards)

• Shoulder Shawl (men or women): Buy length of fabric you want shawl to be. You could fringe edges or finish them. Men may want to go up and over just one shoulder (length about mid thigh) and secure with sash at waist.) Women could drape over head wrapping loosely around neck resting on shoulders then
hang down front and back desired length - - can secure on head with headband