Whether its traditional wedding dresses in igboland you’re interested in for yourself as a bride or you’re on the lookout for traditional wedding attire in igboland as a soon to be wedding guest. We have an assortment of traditional marriage attire for igbos that will suit your taste. Buy from us or simply recommend us to your friends or family who are either planning their traditional wedding or attending one as an honored guest we will be glad for that.
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We have a wide array of materials and traditional wedding dress accessories suitable for both igbo traditional wedding attire for the bride as well as igbo traditional wedding attire for bride and groom. We have different pricing plans and quality of outfits and materials ideal for different wedding budgets. As a bride, you have the right to wear the best that your budget allows you while looking beautiful at your big day.
Traditional Wedding Attire In Igboland
Traditional Igbo Wedding Outfits Are Beautiful
A traditional wedding is known as igbankwu in the ethnic language of the southeastern Nigerian Igbo, and it is a beautiful ceremony filled with traditional customs and elegant pageantry. The wedding guests participate in traditional customs, eat local cuisine, and don native outfits for the ceremony.
During traditional Igbo weddings, amazing high-fashion and customary outfits are worn that are representative of both families and friends. The guests, family members, and bride and groom wear fabrics and designs that complement one another.
The festive celebration is filled with joy, happiness, and fun but is incomplete without the high-fashion outfits worn on these joyous occasions.
Nigerian designers and tailors highlight their creativity with the customary blouses, wrappers, skirts, dresses, and head ties. The styles are brilliant and brightly colored, and there are endless variations, all of which give the men a noble air and flatter the female form.https://4f51838149c48f7a6852f8a2468f0d2b.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html
The outfits worn by the women are eye-catching, elegant, regal, and thoughtfully designed. At these traditional weddings, there is a dress code and color theme chosen by the bride and groom. In addition, there are many similarities between the modern traditional wedding outfits worn by the Yoruba and Igbo ethnic groups.
Both ethnic groups color-code their ceremonies, blouses, skirts, agbada, and wrappers, and use lots of embroidery and accessories. The major distinctions are in the ceremony and traditional requirements, which are different, yet serve the same purpose.
The Color Theme
A desire for uniformity and solidarity with the bride and groom dictates that the bride’s family and groom’s family choose the color theme for the event. The colors chosen by the bride’s family might be a different color than those selected by the groom’s family.https://4f51838149c48f7a6852f8a2468f0d2b.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html
However, each color should represent the color theme for the occasion, such as purple and gold. Even though the bride’s family, friends, and associates might choose to wear purple, the material is the same.
It applies to the groom’s friends and family if they choose gold as their theme color. The same applies to the material selected by the bride for her people, called the Aso-Ebi.
Although Aso-Ebi is the same material and distributed to the family for the traditional wedding, the guests are able to create amazing designs using this uniform material. Sometimes, they use a local fabric called “tie and dye” as a uniform outfit.
Igbo Marriage Dress Code
The dress code should have an ethnic design that complements the rich culture of the geographical area of the bride’s heritage. The traditional outfit worn by the bride is usually a blouse and wrapper or dress.
They have a wide range of choices of material from silk, George, damask, print, machine print, lace, or any other material they’d like.
The top blouse could be sown as a short-sleeve, sleeveless, or long-sleeve blouse. If the color choice is gold and blue, the blouse usually is gold, and the skirt or wrapper is blue.
The blouse comes in various designs with embroideries that add a more dramatic flare. The embroidery can be on the short sleeves, neck region, or the entire blouse, depending on the bride’s taste and preference.
The blouse can have a low or high bust-line or be moderately cut, and it should add to the woman’s beauty. A decorative piece such as a brooch, flower, or rose adds to the beauty of the blouse. If a decorative piece is not part of the blouse, then a beautiful hand fan creates a dramatic effect.
The Wrapper or Skirt
The wrapper is usually a different color than the blouse and might be plain or have folds, frills, embroidery, or overlaps, depending on the woman’s taste. The wrappers are tied waist high, and in modern wrappers, they can be held firm with extensions or rubber bands.
The wrappers can be a single- or double-piece, depending on the choice of the wearer. Therefore, if the color theme is pink and purple, then the blouse is pink and the wrapper is purple. The skirts can be expressive and either long, flowing, knee-length items, or flirtier ones (for a young woman).
The designer can do virtually anything with the skirt, even adding pieces of other materials to add to the dramatic flair. Young women and bridesmaids prefer skirts to wrappers, while married women both young and old prefer the elegant wrappers.
George wrappers are usually the preferred materials for these traditional weddings.
The outfit is not complete without accessories to bring it all together; one of the most important accessories is the orange coral beads around the neck. The coral beads are usually large and prominent, giving balance to the whole ensemble.
On her wrist, the bride might choose to wear ivory wristbands, bracelets, bangles, or silver and gold chains. Female guests can choose slightly understated coral beads worn on the neck and wrists or crystal beads and a brooch.
The handbag should be small and match either the blouse or wrapper to give the outfit a uniform appearance. Large bags are not ideal, but they are useful for carrying gifts for the bride and groom. This also applies to footwear, which should match the colors of the outfit, especially the color of the blouse.https://4f51838149c48f7a6852f8a2468f0d2b.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html
Low-heeled shoes are ideal for such occasions because of dancing and other vigorous activities. A heavy brooch is introduced into the coral beads, and a rose can be placed on the blouse’s shoulder for dramatic effect.
The Head Tie
The head tie is an important part of the outfit and is important when wearing a blouse and wrapper. The head ties in traditional weddings usually match either the blouse or wrapper.
Any combination works as long as the chosen color theme for the event is strictly followed. Head ties are usually made of a lightweight material like silk, polyester, or mono-colored and plain nylon.
Instead of wearing a head tie, the bride sometimes wears a cap made from coral beads. She might choose to braid her hair and wear beads woven into the braid.
|Blouse and skirt||Head tie||Coral beads|
|Dress||Head wrap||Ivory beads|
|Blouse and wrapper||Beaded hair||Precious stones|
|Flowy gown||Coral cap||Gold bracelets|
Makeup is an essential part of the whole process that gives the bride a beautiful, alluring look. A professional makeup artist uses simple tones based on the woman’s facial features. The makeup artist should introduce elements and colors similar to the wedding’s color theme.
In a more native setup, the bride wears short, knee-length skirts, a short blouse, and has her midsection covered in coral beads (known as Gigida). She also wears coral beads on her neck and ivory bangles on both wrists and ankles.
She might also choose to carry a feather hand-fan for effect and to accompany her dancing.
The men are part of this fashion melting-pot and are clothed in loose-fitted, knee-length shirts and flabby trousers. The men use only one of the chosen colors or materials, which they sow into any traditional outfit they favor.
A cap is also part of the outfit but does not necessarily have to match the outfit. Therefore, the caps come in red, black, gold, and other colors commonly seen at these weddings. Some prefer suits, regular shirts, and trousers, but donning clothes that match the color theme shows kinship with the couple.https://4f51838149c48f7a6852f8a2468f0d2b.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html
The groom might add a heavy Agbada with lots of embroidery on top of his native shirt and trousers.
Latest Igbo Blouse Style
Igbo Traditional Wedding Color Combinations
- Gold head tie, gold blouse, and blue wrapper.
- Silver head ties, silver blouse, and magenta wrapper.
- Pink head ties, pink blouse, and purple wrapper.
- Gold head tie, gold blouse, and gold and red skirt.
- White blouse and magenta skirt/wrapper.
- Wedding dresses might have two color designs.
- The bride might wear a monochrome colored outfit (dress).
- Wine head tie, wine blouse, and blue wrapper.
Interestingly, a recurring color choice for the blouse is gold, and purple wrappers are very popular. Instead of coral beads, beautiful chokers with crystal pendants, including heavy embroidery on the blouse, make a great outfit.
Traditional Igbo wedding outfits are lovely, lively, and a delightful part of the important ceremony.
What to Expect at a Nigerian Wedding
Nigeria is a potpourri of languages, religions, cultures, and traditions. Nigeria has an estimated 370 tribes, the main three being Igbo, Hausa, and Yoruba. The country is largely partitioned with Muslims in the north and Christians in the south. Weddings from all corners are commonly all-out, multi-day, colorful affairs with numerous cultural intricacies. Oftentimes, everyone’s invited, your outfit may depend on which side of the family you’re from, and quite literally, it rains money.
If invited to a “Naija” wedding, prepare for serious merrymaking, dancing, and eating to your heart’s content. We turned to experts Feyisola Ogunfemi and Jewel Odeyemi to answer some FAQs about Nigerian weddings.
MEET THE EXPERT
- Feyisola Ogunfemi is a Nigerian wedding planner with over 10 years of experience, and the owner of Statuesque Events, which specializes in multicultural weddings on the East Coast and abroad. She grew up around weddings as her family designs custom traditional attire (aso-ebi) worn at Nigerian wedding ceremonies.
- Jewel Odeyemi is the founder of Touch of Jewel Events and Designs, an event and wedding planning company based in Dallas. She has planned countless ethnic and multicultural weddings over the past seven years and racked up multiple awards in the process.
- What should I wear to a Nigerian wedding? “Most guests wear eveningwear unless aso-ebi (color-coordinated traditional attire) is specified,” explains Ogunfemi. “Elders usually choose to wear aso-ebi and this is the case both in Nigeria and abroad.” Additionally, non-Nigerians who wish to wear traditional attire to weddings are welcome to do so.
- How long is a Nigerian wedding ceremony? Nigerian nuptial ceremonies are typically between 30 minutes to one hour long while the reception generally lasts anywhere from four to six hours so there’s enough time for outfit changes and sufficient dancing.
- Will the newlyweds kiss? At traditional Christian and church ceremonies, the couple may indeed kiss but this does not happen at Islamic weddings.
- Will there be alcohol? “The presence or absence of alcohol will largely depend on the beliefs and religion of the couple,” says Ogunfemi. You’ll typically find white and red wine, soft drinks, palm wine (tapped from a palm tree), and Guinness. Nigeria is the second-largest market for Guinness-consumption after Great Britain. Favored champagne and spirits brands include Moët & Chandon, Hennessy, and Remy Martin.
There are multiple layers to weddings from every tribe right from the proposal. For Igbo and Yoruba people, the traditional wedding comes first, followed by a church ceremony that is often referred to as the “white wedding” due to the color of the bride’s gown. Both ceremonies could be days, weeks, or months apart. The white wedding customarily takes place in a church, but modern couples are opting for non-denominational venues.45 Fascinating Wedding Traditions From Around the World
The more the merrier is the motto at Nigerian weddings, which regularly exceed 250 guests. RSVPs are often futile and wedding crashing is de rigueur so additional guests are preemptively catered for. Nigerian weddings are community celebrations where extended family, distant relatives, neighbors, and well-wishers of any variety are expected. Getting married is a celebrated milestone for the couple as well as their parents who will proudly invite as many people as possible to partake in their children’s achievement.
Ahead, learn all about Nigerian wedding traditions and what they signify straight from the experts.01of 10
The Bride Price
It’s universal across most Nigerian tribes for the man to provide an agreed set of items for the bride’s family before the marriage may take place. This is known as eru iyawo in Yoruba, rubu dinar in Hausa, or simply as the bride price. This does not indicate that a woman is being sold, but it is rather a symbolic gesture to prove that the man is capable of taking care of her and their new family financially.
“This is also to compensate the bride’s family for the loss of income or labor he is extracting from the family by marrying her and taking her away,” says Ogunfemi. “This can sometimes be quite exorbitant and the price increases if the woman has a university degree. The groom’s family brings the requested items and once it’s determined that they’ve met the requirements, the event can proceed.” The bride price is usually a combination of cash and gifts ranging from clothes, household goods, food, and sometimes animals.02of 10
When an Igbo man wishes to marry a woman, he goes with his father and other male relatives to knock on the bride’s family’s door in a process called Ikuaka or “knocking.” It is normally the man’s father (or uncle, elder brother, or older living male relative) who announces his intentions to marry the woman. The men come bearing gifts such as kola nuts and alcoholic beverages, which Nigerians sometimes refer to as “hot drinks.”
The second stage of an Igbo wedding is Ime Ego, which is the payment of the dowry or bride price. The final traditional ceremony is called Igba Nkwu or “wine carrying”. At this lively event, the bride must search for her future husband who is hiding among the crowd of men. She dances joyfully while scanning the room for him. She must correctly identify her fiancé and then offer him a cup of wine, which he must then drink from to denote he is indeed her groom. The couple is then declared married, there’s another outfit change and jubilant dancing erupts.03of 10
Traditional Yoruba weddings are large and lively with anywhere between 200 to 1,000 guests in attendance. These ceremonies are hosted by two MCs known as alagas. They are usually older women and there’s one from each side of the family. The alagas are boisterous, charismatic characters that add humor to the day. They are accompanied by a talking drummer for the entirety of the event, who pumps in additional vigor and excitement with each beat.
Yorubas have a greeting custom known as Ìdobálè whereby males prostrate, placing their full bodies on the ground as a sign of respect. The groom and his groomsmen must prostrate before the bride’s family and the chest must touch the ground completely for the greeting to be complete. Ogunfemi, who is Yoruba herself, notes that “once the men prostrate on the ground, the bride’s family asks a few questions, the groom is seated and then the bride enters with her ladies who are all wearing matching aso-ebi. After this, she places a hat on the groom’s head and then he carries her. This is known as Igbeyawo. He then places a ring on her finger and they are pronounced married.”04of 10
Matrimony among Hausa people begins with the payment of the bride price which is called Kayan Zander. A lower bride price is incidentally said to result in greater blessings for the couple. Once this has been paid to the bride’s family, the wedding can take place. The Fatihah is the actual wedding day where representatives from both families exchange vows before the religious priest and not the couple themselves.
Event number three, Wuni, is ladies-only. Here, the bride enjoys time with her female friends adorning their hands with henna. During Kamun Amariya the groom’s relatives then playfully negotiate with the ladies for the “release” of the bride for the reception. Finally, the bride is escorted to her matrimonial home in a process called Kai Amariya.05of 10
Kola Nut Ceremony
Kola nut is the bitter fruit of the kola tree. The breaking of the kola nut signifies the start of any traditional event for many tribes and is a way for elders to welcome guests. The nuts must first be blessed before they are broken and the more parts the kola nut breaks into, the more prosperity the hosts and visitors will receive.06of 10
For the church wedding, a bride wears a white bridal gown and the groom wears a suit. They may choose to change into traditional attire later on during the reception. For traditional weddings, clothing varies according to the tribe.
Odeyemi notes that in traditional Yoruba weddings, the women usually wear an iro and buba, a vibrant wrapper and top outfit that is usually heavily beaded, along with a veil and an ipele shoulder scarf. They also carry a fan and tie a gele (an ornate head wrap). The men wear an agbada, which is an oversized kaftan made from asa-oke fabric and the color always complements the bride’s fabric. Couples typically have several looks throughout the event.
At the Igbo traditional wedding (Igba Nkwu), women wear various outfits throughout the evening with a coral crown and necklace while the men wear the isi agwu (lion head) fabric that’s usually black, red, white, or blue and bedecked with gold lions all over. Another outfit change is on the cards once the couple is pronounced man and wife. This time the couple re-enter in matching attire.https://ffc42e946eefb0c350ee071bc01f3841.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html07of 10
Aso-ebi means “the family clothes” and this is one of the most striking aspects of Nigerian weddings. The couple decides on a uniform color scheme that each side of the family shall follow. “It’s a way to differentiate the bride’s family from the groom’s based on the fabrics and colors they’re wearing. It’s also common to see the couple’s friends wearing their own separate aso-ebi”, says Odeyemi. Aso-ebi was primarily an element of Yoruba weddings but this elaborate, harmonious attire has since spread to other Nigerian tribes and indeed, other African countries.08of 10
“Spraying” is the highlight of the Nigerian wedding reception. Guests spray the couple with cash on the dance floor as a way of showering them with blessings and to keep them dancing on. There’s usually a live band and a DJ playing afrobeat, hip-hop, traditional, and contemporary music.
Couples can receive a lot of money this way to start married life and the bridesmaids help to pick up all the cash from the floor. The longer the couple dances, the more money they receive and they’ll be sprayed any time they’re on the dance floor. Whether or not there’s a registry, you’d always give a monetary gift to the couple and sometimes to their parents, too. Fill your wallet with singles and get ready to party. Fret not if you only have large bills; many weddings have a “change table.”Everything You Need to Know About the Money Dance Tradition09of 10
Nigerian wedding etiquette dictates that no guest may leave hungry. Expect generous helpings of party staples like jollof rice, which is so synonymous with weddings that it’s sometimes called “party rice” or “wedding rice.” Jollof is a celebrated Nigerian dish and its provenance is hotly contested—there is a long-standing rivalry with neighboring Ghana regarding whom does it better.
“For the cocktail hour or appetizers, we typically serve what we call ‘small chops’—things like meat pie, sausage rolls, samosas, puff puff, chin chin, and spicy meat skewers called suya”, explains Odeyemi. It is common to have both buffet and plated service with an array of options to appease all palates since there is fierce excitement around the food. Particularly at traditional weddings, the main menu will consist of “swallow” (foods that you don’t chew but can swallow) like fufu, which is then paired with a thick and spicy soup.10of 10
You’ll know you’ve attended a Nigerian wedding when you depart with branded party favors with the couple’s photo, names, and wedding date. These range from fans and kitchenware to clocks and even power banks. Attending a wedding is one of the best ways to experience the richness of Nigeria. Come for the food, flying cash, and festivity, and leave with great memories and perhaps a monogrammed clock (or two).