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Embracing The Agbada Movement

By Shola-Adido Oladotun
30 October 2022   |   1:00 pm
Watch out, world! There is a traditional revolution taking over, and it’s got the words “Agbada” written all over it. Now, in case you are living under a rock and don’t know what an agbada is, let’s give you a quick fashion lesson. Agbada is a traditional flowing wide-sleeve robe worn mostly by Yoruba men…

Watch out, world! There is a traditional revolution taking over, and it’s got the words “Agbada” written all over it. Now, in case you are living under a rock and don’t know what an agbada is, let’s give you a quick fashion lesson.

Agbada is a traditional flowing wide-sleeve robe worn mostly by Yoruba men in the southwestern part of Nigeria.
Although Agbada has been around for a long time, it wasn’t until a certain TV presenter called Ebuka Obi-Uchendu attended a wedding wearing a modernised version of the look by the designer Ugo Monye that the clothing item quickly became a must-have. Since then, Agbada has shifted its narrative from being a piece worn by only rich men to being a go-to outfit for either an owanbe or a photoshoot.

However, as with every great trend, there are some rules you need to follow to properly pull an Agbada off. So, be it a goal to be the next Ebuka or get inducted into the Yoruba demons’ Hall of Fame, here are five things to consider when wearing an agbada.

Never wear sneakers
Sneakers are a big no when selecting footwear to be worn on an Agbada. There is a reason it’s called a traditional outfit, not a semi-traditional or something else. Completely dismiss the idea of wearing those Nike or Gucci sneakers on an agbada because not only does it cheapen the clothing piece look, it screams that you have a low style taste. Rather, opt for a loafer or fancy sandals.

Avoid wrinkles
When it comes to an agbada, it’s important never to underestimate the power of a good iron. Don’t assume that just because your agbada has the best design, people will overlook its wrinkles. Take time to bring its beauty out by improving its smoothness and texture using iron and starch.

Select the right colours
Hey, you. Yes, you! If you think wearing a different colour of trousers and Buba under an Agbada is a good idea, then you better think again. For example; if you wear blue trousers, go with a blue Buba. Ignore the voice in your head that wants you to wear two different colours. It’s almost never a good idea.

Accessorise
A beautifully tailored Agbada is easily forgotten without the right accessories. Add a touch of royalty to your look with items like traditional beads, horsetail, caps, and a walking stick.

A good design and fabric
The same way we don’t talk about socks on slides is how plain Agbadas are slowly becoming a taboo. While it might cost more, make a conscious effort to ensure your tailor includes design elements like embroidery on your agbada.
Additionally, select the right fabric material capable of actualizing your dream agbada look.