Nigeria’s custom of wearing matching clothes on all occasions has its drawbacks

The goal of Aso Ebi is to quickly identify dead children at funerals, not family members or friends, and not on other occasions.

However, the younger generation was of the opinion that ebi could also be any dress that was appropriate for any occasion.

The primary reason for buying uniforms is tied to the notion of unity. If a large number of people are collectively dressed in uniform, it implies that the host is well-known and well-connected. Event organizers are often evaluated by the attendance of guests attending their events. A large number of people attending honors the organizer with their families and friends.

In fashion and at funerals,

However, for certain practices to be considered acceptable, they have to reflect change regarding the content and function. As of today, ebi has seen a difference. Its use has expanded beyond relatives (ebi) to colleagues (alabasisepo) and friends (ore) ore, analog (co-residents), as well as neighbors (lanugo) and others who wish well.

People who are not blood-related but who are connected socially create an entirely new set of social relationships. People who attend parties support the celebrant through money, gifts, or even ways by participating in the arranging of the celebration. While people appreciate participation in cash donations, it boosts morale and the social significance of the occasion. Also, it adds aesthetics to the shape of fashion. A female civil servant from our study stated:

The primary reason we purchase and sell Ebi is that we want to create an event that is colorful, beautiful, unique, and stunning.

Social gatherings are just as important as deciding to purchase the appropriate clothes for them. The invitees are given invitation cards and notified via texts on their mobile phones. If a party isn’t attended, it can be shameful, which is why a larger circle of friends is currently invited to participate in the occasion. One of our participants said:

I have been to weddings where I didn’t even have any connection with the couple or their families; however, I donned the identical ebi everyone else wore to the wedding. This is not how it should be.

The negative

Solidarity is rewarded either consciously or in a way that is not conscious in the aso-ebi culture. This is in accordance with the Yoruba rule of thumb, “Gbami nigba ojo, kingba e nigba erun,” “One good turn deserves another.”

If a person does not join in with a celebrant, he might not receive support from the person who is organizing the celebration. The key to this is buying and wearing the aso ebi. This could constitute the basis for social distinction during the festival. The seating arrangements, the food serving, and the gift distribution are all at the helm.

One of our participants informed us that she went to the wedding of a junior colleague and was unable to afford to purchase the aso ebi. It consisted of satin lace and sequins. The cost was estimated at a price of N11,500 (US$76). She decided to spend the money she had left to purchase gifts for her coworker and took the social cost for this choice when she arrived at the wedding ceremony:

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