Introduction: Knitted Kebaya for Lion Brand Challenge

Picture of Knitted Kebaya for Lion Brand Challenge

OK, here goes.
You probably wonder "What's a kebaya?". So I'll tell you about it first. Kebaya is an Indonesian traditional women's clothing. It's basically a blouse, usually made of sheer fabrics with lace, brocade, wore with a bustier, paired with batik cloth, and usually wore on special occasions like weddings, graduation day, etc. I love this type of clothing because it's very figure flattering.
Anyway, as an Indonesian living abroad, I wanted to knit something that is very Indonesian, because knitting has never been a part of our culture, if only a very very small part. So I made this one as a tribute to my roots.

I used light worsted 100% rayon yarn because Indonesia is a tropical country, so the yarn has to be suitable for its climate. The red color and the glimmering shine of rayon add an elegant and luxury feel to it, after all it's for special occasions.

I made the pattern myself (I think there has never been any knitting pattern of kebaya anywhere), and knitted it with a pair of #6 needles. For finishing, I crocheted the body's edging, button loops, and the buttons.
It can be made without buttons too, simply use a brooch or corsage (I used knitted flower corsage in matching color) for closure.


sewuneek (author)2013-04-06

Awesome, are you offering the pattern at all? Thanks

crochetlearner123 (author)2013-02-15

Can i have the pattern for this kebaya???

canida (author)2008-02-03

Beautiful, I love it! The traditional kebaya is a beautiful thing - it's neat to see a knitted version. Please tell me you took notes on the pattern! If you'd like to share I would love to try it.

dendidong (author)canida2008-02-04

Yes, the traditional kebaya is a beautiful thing. I love it so much. I intend to knit some more versions of kebaya in the future. I have schematics of the pattern, I'm still working on writing the full pattern. I made it in one size (mine -- small), but I'm trying to rewrite the pattern in several sizes.

cookmartyn3 (author)dendidong2010-09-05

I also would love the pattern, it is so beautiful. melody

helenkosings (author)dendidong2008-05-07

Please do send me the pattern This is gorgeous. helenkosingsATcomcastDOTnet

ireth0283 (author)2010-08-17

I would love to have the pattern as well. Thank You. Email address:

zeldaa (author)2010-08-12

so very beautiful , could i have the pattern. thanks in advance diana

leeyaliya (author)2010-07-27

Cantik sekali kebaya anda..How much do you charge to make one? TQ.

AERenoir (author)2009-11-17

Woo.. Sesama orang indo... can i have the pattern too?

my email is sha2_g9ATyahooDOTcom

ubai (author)2009-09-04

What a wonderful Knitted Kebaya! And finally I find Indonesian else here. Desain yang bagus kawan.

cozycoleman (author)2008-03-13

wow! That's gorgeous!

babakers5 (author)2008-03-03

It is absolutely beautiful...I'd love to make a garment piece like this. Beautiful, Love the color, style and over all look of your whole project. Definitely something to be proud of. Congrats on winning too. You really deserved it.

SaraHawk (author)2008-03-01

I didn't finish my project in time to enter and I thought mine was great. But, yours is Magnificent and a Real Winner! Thanks for sharing it.

Micky Kay (author)2008-02-29

Wow how fantasaroo your knitted Kebaya is - congratulations in producing a first. It is so satisfying to do this I know. I would really love the knitted pattern also for the flowers - anyone who may have patterns for knitted embellishments of any kind I would dearly love the patterns thanks so much. eg Flowers, leaves, etc. Thanks a million, Micky Kay (Melbourne, Victoria, Australia) PS I just love this group so much thanks!

mita603 (author)2008-02-23

I just have to compliment you on this beautiful piece of work, you really are very talented! How long did it take to make this?

deadalchemist (author)2008-02-20

Wow this is REALLY something special. You've done some excellent work here, and congrats on making a beautiful pattern!

jkennett (author)2008-02-20

Absolutely beautiful. I don't suppose you'd like to share the pattern?

Mugs5 (author)2008-02-09

Very gorgeous!

Thata (author)2008-02-09

Great work. Now, many people know about our traditional woman's cloth. Congrats for your amazing kebaya

defenestr8or (author)2008-02-07

wonderful! I'd certainly need it in much larger size, but I would definitely make this!

regisd (author)2008-02-04

that's quite lovely. i really like the line along the front bottom edge. could you make something like this in multiple colors? or is the kebaya traditionally monochromatic?

dendidong (author)regisd2008-02-04

Thanks. I like that part too. I do hope I can make a more colorful one in the future. Well, kebaya can be colorful or monochromatic. In fact, the design varies almost as many as there are kebayas in the world. There are casual styles and formal ones. The most intricate design usually in the form of wedding kebayas, embellished with beads, sequins, etc. And then there are royal kebayas, used by royal Javanese family, made of velvet with gold thread embroidery. And nowadays there are so many beautiful modern designs of kebaya, many local designers focus on designing haute couture kebayas. They're amazing.

dendidong (author)2008-02-04

Thank you all for the compliments. I'm glad you like it :)

stinkymum (author)2008-02-04

It's really beautiful

Zontee at Lion Brand (author)2008-02-04

It's really beautiful--a wonderful tribute to your heritage.

rizkyw (author)2008-02-04

woop an indonesian instructable! :D

nrlaing (author)2008-02-04


inquisitive (author)2008-02-04

Really beautiful and inspirational! Thank you!

bcharmer (author)2008-02-03

Beautiful. Wonderful work.

Zujus (author)bcharmer2008-02-04

Great work, very nice ;)

gyromild (author)2008-02-04

Wow it's a knitted kebaya. Never knew one even exist =)
I love kebaya, especially the ones using sheer fabric, jaw dropped every time I see my other half in one of those.
You should seriously consider getting someone to model this for you, together with the batik sarong.
Nonetheless, great job!

dendidong (author)2008-02-04

I just found out this slideshow is being featured! Thanks canida!

roughrider (author)2008-02-03

The pattern certainly shows off the beauty of the curves... which is why I'm reluctant to critique further... but here goes... I have similar stitching that is tighter in the form of thermal blankets. When new they function well between sheets or other coverings as insulation but now that they are old and worn and the stitching has stretched they have lost their looks as well as their thermal capacity.

dendidong (author)roughrider2008-02-03

Hi roughrider, thanks for the critique, I really appreciate it. I surely hope mine would not end up like your blankets. After all, it's for special occasions so I will only wear it occasionally (far less times than you would use the blanket, I think) and I will take special care of it like handwashing it with cold water. Also, thermal capacity has never been my concern while making this, because it's suppose to be cool and airy. It's very hot in Indonesia, around 80F most of the time.

dendidong (author)2008-02-03

Thank you all for the kind comments :)

Michelej7 (author)2008-02-03

A+ to you!! That is some fantastic work.

PurpleChicken (author)2008-02-03

Wow that's georgous

darkmuskrat (author)2008-02-03

That is so very cool. The first thing I thought of though was the Guild Wars Mesmer Outfit :P

GorillazMiko (author)2008-02-03

Agreeing with everybody else, this is very very awesome.
It looks like a professional done thing (as T3h_Muffinator said), and it looks just great. Awesome job.
+1 rating.

T3h_Muffinator (author)2008-02-03

That looks professional! Amazing work! .....(I could have sworn I just saw my friend wearing the same thing in school....)

Patrik (author)2008-02-03

Very elegant - nice work!

dendidong (author)Patrik2008-02-03

Thanks Patrik

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