In Igbo land, the Traditional attire for the men is an overflowing jumper or a long-sleeved shirt worn over the gooji wrapper, which is tied around the waist, curving down to the ankles.This dress is matched with a cap and a walking stick, which aids as an instrument of support and defense. The traditional wear for the women is a blouse, worn over a loin cloth.
This female attire goes with a head-tie ear rings and necklaces or traditional necklaces.
Traditionally the attire of the Igbo generally consisted of little clothing as the purpose of clothing then was to conceal private parts, although elders were fully clothed. Children were usually nude from birth till their adolescence (the time when they were considered to have something to hide) but sometimes ornaments such as beads were worn around the waist for medical reasons. Uli body art was also used to decorate both men and women in the form of lines forming patterns and shapes on the body.
A traditional Igbo hat made entirely from wool.
With colonialism and the Westernization of Igbo culture, Western styled clothes such as shirts and trousers over took traditional clothing.
Women carried their babies on their backs with a strip of clothing binding the two with a knot at her chest. This baby carrying technique was and still is practiced by many people groups across Africa along with the Igbo who still carry their babies this way. This method has been modernized in the form of the child carrier. In most cases Igbo women did not cover their chest areas. Maidens usually wore a short wrapper with beads around their waist with other ornaments such as necklaces and beads. Both men and women wore wrappers.
Men would wear loin cloths that wrapped around their waist and between their legs to be fastened at their back, the type of clothing appropriate for the intense heat as well as jobs such as farming. Men could also tie a wrapper over their loin cloth.
On their torsos, Igbo men wear an Isiagu, or a plain white shirt that reaches the knees. Isiagu is a type of pullover shirt, usually embroidered with lion heads, crowns or other large symbols.
The bottom half of the outfit is usually rather subdued compared to the rest. Grooms like wearing simple trousers that are traditionally wide-legged. Others, however, go for the wrapper, which can be as short or as long as they want.
The traditional wedding attire of a groom should also include accessories. Most grooms match their brides by wearing coral necklaces. Some add gold chains to their shirts. There is also now a trend among Igbo men whereby they carry a walking stick covered in intricate designs.
Modern traditional attire
Modern Igbo traditional attire is generally made up, for men, of the Isiagu top which resembles the African Dashiki. Isiagu (or Ishi agu) is usually patterned with lions heads embroidered over the clothing, It can also be plain, (usually black). It is worn with trousers and can be worn with either a traditional title holders hat (a fez named okpu agu or agwu), or with the traditional Igbo stripped men’s hat (which resembles the Bobble hat). For women, an embodied puffed sleeve blouse (influenced by European attire) along with two wrappers (usually modern Hollandismaterial) and a head scarf are worn.