Yesterday, I had a meeting with a friend getting married in June. Initially, I thought I was going to be the “Wedding Planner”. BOY! Was I glad or what? ’cause right from my NYSC days she had always said I would plan her wedding. So, I was joyous that PEACHES EVENTS had gotten a full planning gig. When I got to her place, a different scenario greeted me. PEACHES EVENTS wasn’t the official planner. In fact, I was selected to be in the “committee of friends” and the bridal train. Oh well! The things we do for our friends.
Now, the reason for this post is because she said she wasn’t going to have anyone wearing “aso ebi” at her wedding and I totally agree with her. I am of the opinion that the act is highly overrated. Before I proceed, I would just like to ask a simple question.
Why do people wear aso ebi?
For those who don’t know what it means, aso- ebi literally means “clothes of the family” basically clothes for family members. However, the aso ebi phenomenon has now evolved to include close friends as well. I did some extra digging on “aso ebi” and here is what I found. According to the Urban dictionary, aso ebi (Pronounced ASHO EYBEE) are Nigerian outfits made from matching fabric to be worn by a group of people to a party, wedding, or funeral as a uniform.
Aso ebi helps to identify and differentiate the group of wearers, or various group of wearers. Surprisingly, some schools of thought believe that the sale of aso ebi is a way for some celebrants to raise money for their events. For Pete’s sake, have the type of event that you and your family can afford, don’t put people in a tight corner, where they have to pay for your event indirectly. It’s worse with the brides and some over zealous family members who force it down your throat and ensure you join the band wagon.
I implore you – do not bow to pressure from your mum, your aunts, your friends or anyone else for that matter. Aso ebi shouldn’t be turned into a money making venture. Haba! Not everyone can afford to pay ridiculous prices for clothes. You hear of prices as high as 80, 000 Nigerian Naira and for those that can’t afford the high prices, they are cajoled into buying the fabrics of a lesser price. This, usually, results in two levels of aso ebi; one for the rich folks and one for the not so rich folks. You even have the ones for the older and younger attendees of the event.
Aso ebis always turn out beautiful as you will see in the ensuing pictures. What I have major problems with are
1. the exorbitant prices associated with it,
2. the forcing of aso ebi on people and
3. segregation of aso ebi wearers from non-wearers amongst other things.
A color code can and should be selected, where people dress according to the colors you have chosen. That way, there is variety and people are free to be creative and settle for what is comfortable. I know I am not having aso ebi on my day. Just a color code. Anyone who wants to do it on my behalf should please knock themselves out and shouldn’t expect a single contribution from me.
Always remember that most of your friends might end up wearing theirs for just that day especially when they end up with ridiculous styles.They cherish you and want to celebrate your day with you so reciprocate their thoughtful gesture by being considerate of their pockets.
Please do share your thoughts. What’s your take on the aso ebi trend? Have you had any bad experiences because you did not wear aso ebi or with your tailor? Would you be following the aso ebi trend on your big day?