Monday, 29 September 2014

Yoruba traditional weddings #owambe

It's 2years today that some amazing people trekked all the way from Kwara, Nigeria to Ogun, Nigeria to pluck a very beautiful rare flower they fell in love with. Just kidding, they didn't trek, they rode in their Buggati, Rolls Royce, Ferrari, Lamborghini and the like, even private jets. #Baddest #Frosh. I just heard the word tradoversary so I'll use it. Today is my tradoversary so I'll tell you as much as I can about Yoruba traditional weddings.

So you've been dating a Yoruba babe and she has been dropping hints, picking aso-ebi, attending weddings, talking about bridal showers and tagging you on proposal posts on Instagram? Or maybe she has proposed to you with "Baby I'm pregnant" lol, you're just curious or want a good read? You want to be here.

Yorubas love fun, feferity, colour, party and they party hard. What better way to do this than to throw classy wedding ceremonies that would be fondly remembered several years after. Lavish your investment or run into debts for a day's ceremony *sigh*

After the proposal, if there is one, a date for the Introduction of families is picked with the bride's family as the host. The groom's people come with small gifts like biscuits, drinks, sweets and fruits. The bride's family also prepares similar gifts to give them when they leave. The introduction is meant to be a private and informal event where the families get to meet and interact formally as in-laws. It is usually commenced with prayers and singing. The groom's family state their purpose of visit. A member of the bride's family introduces the bride's family members present, a member of the groom's family does same for his side. The intending bride is ushered in to greet her family and in-laws. Merriment and gists follow. A wedding date may be fixed. They end with prayers. That's basically the Introduction.

Two dates are usually picked for the wedding. The traditional wedding and white/nikkah wedding.
It's usually a Thursday/Friday and Saturday of the same week or have a week interval. Some do everything on the same day. Did you say stressful?Mine was 3months apart. I first saw the time gap in the Igbo tradition and loved it. My parents were kind enough to allow me + we had a lot of time to rest in between events. We also learnt from the first event.

To have a proper Yoruba wedding you need
  • Alaga Ijoko (Compere from the Bride's side) and an Alaga Iduro (Compere from the groom's side). These professional comperes are funny, witty and far from shy. They talk, joke, sing, dance and entertain with they way they drill the groom and his friends and conduct the ceremony.
  • Different array of continental and local dishes. Ofada rice, jollof rice, fried rice, yam pottage, amala, pounded yam, chinese, ikokore, designer stew,... The more the quantity/variety of foods, the more successful the event of your party. Don't forget a cake, small chops, barbecue, dessert,...
  • Water, soft drinks, juice, cocktail, wine, spirit,... Depend on your guest list.
  • Nowadays, you have a band that plays owambe music and also a DJ that gives a youthful feel to the event.
  • #Asoebi Usually, a uniform material is picked for the guests. Most times, there may be up to 4 or more uniform materials with the bride's parents, groom's parents, bride, bride's siblings, groom's siblings all picking aso-ebi for their friends. If you attend such wedding without being adorned with a uniform, you'll feel lost and unwanted.lol. You can't even get into some venue if you're not properly dressed. And the struggle to make the nicest style, get lovely accessories and be featured on bellanaija weddings ehn. I picked a 1k Ankara for my friends for the sake uniformity. I'm glad I did as it turned out to be a big event. I love aso-ebi, it gives the event colour. It's asking me to pay 1million for it that's my problem, I'm doing you a favour and showing my love by buying, remember? Not interested in uniform, you can pick a colour.
  • Venue and decoration. Ofcourse you need a venue which may be a hall or an open field. You should protect your guests from the elements. You also need to get decoration for your venue.
  • My most important part is the outfit. The couple wear matching aso-oke. The groom usually in aso-oke agbada and cap and the bride in aso-oke iro, buba, gele and ipele. She could also wear a mixture of lace and aso-oke. Shoes, purse, make-up, jewelry fit under here. The parents are not left out. They also wear outstanding outfits.
  • Eru-iyawo: A list of items to be provided at the traditional wedding is sent to the groom's family. They are obliged to get everything to the letter. The bride is mandated to pick a Bible as her favorite of the gifts even if her father, like mine, gives her a new Bible every year. The items are not necessarily expensive. Where it says jewelry for the bride, for example. If the guy can afford 1million naira good, if it's 1500 jewelry he can afford, fine. A ridiculously cheap dowry/bride price is asked for but refunded. Mine was 5k smh. Then ridiculously cheaper amounts for iyawo ile, omo ile and co. They say it takes 2 pairs to make a baby but a village to raise a baby. Besides the items for the bride, every other thing is divided into 3. 1 part for the bride's parents, 1 part for the bride's father's family and the 3rd for the bride's mother's family. The families then share it equally in a way that every key member of the family gets out of each item, no matter how some.
  • The groom's family also brings a formal proposal letter which someone from the bride's family, usually a younger female, reads. It may also be the bride's friend. She dances and is sprayed some money before she reads it. The bride's family furnishes the groom's with an acceptance letter which is hardly read.
  • Don't forget a photographer, video coverage, projector screens, security, ushers, party favours, etc.
I noticed that an Igbo lady is considered married upon the traditional wedding. Most Yorubas don't consider themselves married until after the white/nikkah wedding. We don't even call it traditional wedding, we call it engagement. I really don't know what I think about that. Okay I know what I think. The law of the land and even God recognizes me as married upon my traditional wedding. Doesn't mean I still wouldn't have a white wedding. I think a lady that has a white wedding without a traditional wedding is very single. Who paid your dowry and to whom that you're talking married? Trust my smart in-laws sef to whisk me home after the trad wedding. My eldest iyale washed my feet, prayed for me and welcomed me into the family. I then proceeded to my father's house to keep living my single life.

Thank you for reading my long post bloghearts. Please tell us about the #weddingfeferity in your culture/religion. Much love, Anuoluwapo

*Feferity = Pageantry
 Smh = Shaking my head
 Iyawo ile = Wives in the family
 Omo ile = Children in the family
 Iyale = Senior wife

P.S. If you didn't know, Latara Events' Place, Ilorin, is offering their clients FREE EVENTS PLANNING. Don't miss the offer call 08133352000 or visit www.lataraeventsventures.com
No wonder my father refunded them

My sweet mil
Meet my amazing brother
Eru iyawo

13 comments:

Eniwealth said...

Thanks for the education Anu. Just this morning, I remembered hearing a story of how a bride chose pineapple when the alaga iduro told her to go and pick an item from the eru iyawo. LOL Happy tradoniversary ma. Stay healthy and Happy.

Anonymous said...

Love love your eru-iyawo

Ire said...

Awww cute photo with your mil

Esquire said...

na wa oh. i think the Yoruba marriage process and wedding ceremonies are exciting oh. same with the igbos too. well, i would have loved to marry from each tribe in nigeria to have a taste of all the different tribal feferities. i love all that. wink wink.

A yoruba wife is not a bad idea sha. too much partying all through your entire life. well for those who love the party thing like me. wink

Anonymous said...

straight to the point, niceeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Anonymous said...

Your sense of humour!!!

Anuoluwapo said...

Lmao! As she loves pineapples nko? She for choose d clothes/jewellery. Thank you :*

Anuoluwapo said...

Thank you

Anuoluwapo said...

Thank you

Anuoluwapo said...

Very exciting. I love when d parents of d couple and d couple dance in with their frnds n fam. Bride's parents first, groom's family, groom and then d most exciting, d bride.

Lmao. You're on your own o.lol

Anuoluwapo said...

Thank you

Anuoluwapo said...

Thank you

benilhalk said...

How fabulous the Yoruba traditional weddings are!! I am so pleased to see all these fun wedding photos. I have also got the invitation to attend a Yoruba traditional wedding at one of the most popular Los Angeles event venues. So excited to see their traditions in front of my eyes!!