The African ‘boubou’ status

The boubou is formal attire worn by both men and women. Men’s attire consists of three pieces of clothing: a pair of tie-up trousers that narrow towards the ankles while for the women, a two to four piece consisting of a wrapper, scarf, headscarf, blouse or dress is adorned.
African woman dressed in a boubou.
African woman dressed in a boubou.

The boubou is formal attire worn by both men and women.

Men’s attire consists of three pieces of clothing: a pair of tie-up trousers that narrow towards the ankles while for the women, a two to four piece consisting of a wrapper, scarf, headscarf, blouse or dress is adorned.

The boubou is sewed by tailors depending on the taste and preference of clients and it is made out of the ‘’kitenge.’’ It is mostly embroidered. Its trends keep changing and so do textiles and designs of the African wear.

The boubou is a cloth usually linked to married couples especially in the African society. I usually walk through Kigali city everyday but hardly see youth wearing this attire. It is generally perceived that the boubou is attire clad by married people because it is very decent.

Decency is priority in the African culture, it is one of those things everyone must uphold because it is believed that when someone decides to get married, their bodies are not only theirs but for their partner hence the need to honor and respect them. No wonder they are designed to cover three quarters of the body.

Besides being elegant, anyone can wear the boubou to formal ceremonies such as; church services, funeral ceremonies, visiting elders and for parties. A lot of value and respect is accorded to women and men who wear it—this comes naturally.

jacqueuwera@yahoo.com

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