”But I don’t want your aso-ebi”: Open letter to Lagos brides

There’s a wedding every other Saturday in Lagos. Actually scratch that, there is a wedding every Saturday in Lagos, and so most Saturdays you find yourself with a wedding or two to attend. All good, after-all who doesn’t like an owambe? Plus one never turns down an opportunity to eat free jollof.

But the problem with Lagos weddings is that people just don’t hand out invitations any more, with no strings attached, to come and share in their joy and laughter. These invitations now come with a request, nay demand to buy aso-ebi. Not that there is anything wrong with buying aso-ebi.

Wearing “and co” for owambes is as regular as the party jollof that will be served. But what happened to the notion of aso-ebi being reserved for close friends and/or family? Why are we forcing it down the wallets of our wedding guests? Why is my primary school classmate, who I haven’t seen in 15 years hitting me up about buying aso-ebi? And even when one considers buying out of some sentiment or the other, why the exorbitant pricing? If you are trying to raise money for your wedding, you might as well sell tickets but please, attempting to rob me blind with the disguise of selling aso-ebi is in poor taste.

Some people actually sell their aso-Ebi in different grades. I got a call from a friend inviting me, for her wedding. The first sentence that came out of her mouth after pleasantries were exchanged was “T come and buy aso-ebi o, Jide finally proposed”. So I asked her how much it was, she goes “ehn there are different grades. One is 40k, another one is 25 and the last one is 10”. I told her I’ll call back when I decide.

I am still deciding, and the wedding was last November.

I know it’s not by force to buy aso-Ebi and nobody actually prevents you from attending the wedding when you don’t buy it. But it gets so awkward when they sit you at the table with friends who all bought their Aso-Ebi. And am I the only one who thinks the waiters are asked to ignore those who are not wearing aso-ebis, or at least serve them last.

If you really want your friends all dressed up identical, tell them to wear a particular colour or organize aso-ebi for themselves, or at the very least, sell your aso-ebi the same amount you bought it from Eko (If you imported from Italy, abeg just keep it).

I am not a bad belle, there’s nothing I love more than a good owambe (and Shina Peters). But I have decided that if you are not family, or a very close friend, Aunty please I don’t want your aso-ebi .


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