Aso-ebi, a cultural trend, began in Yorubaland, but has steadily gained popularity in Igboland. These days, we can’t deny the aesthetic value aso-ebi style, colour and design adds to Igbo cultural events – wine carrying ceremony, funerals, new yam festivals etc
The aso-ebi craze has become so palpable among Igbo women that not buying it can sometimes determine your entrance into the venue of an event, your inclusion in group photographs, whether you’ll eat or starve at the event, and whether any event souvenir will go home with you.
Many Igbo women have also turned the aso-ebi thing into brisk business. Some have become professional aso-ebi merchants – making huge profit killings in the process. For instance, a lace material that costs N20,000 in Onitsha main market is sometime sold to guest at N50,000 with the endorsement (backing) of the event organizers as if buying the aso-ebi material has become a statement to Igbo women which sounds like:
“Contribute to my wedding ceremony or, risk being treated like an outcast that day.”
Well, to us, we think the aso-ebi craze among Igbo women has become a pocket-draining culture, which they’ve acquired from their Yoruba counterparts. However, aso-ebi styles and designs, undeniably adds some colour and life to Igbo cultural event of all kinds.