African traditional wedding dresses

Africa is very peculiar country with its interesting customs. Therefore, African wedding ceremonies and dresses pose a mystery to Americans and Europeans. Hot weather, fascinating African landscapes, all this is reflected in the costumes of local people, brides and grooms. For Africa, the materials have symbolic value, the same, for example, as in Scotland.

Traditional wedding dresses of African brides are wide skirts («bubah») and top plural bright colors, plenty of beads, necklaces and bracelets. Symbolic hats and jewelry from beads are used as headdresses.


Moroccan brides dress in wool blankets of various bright colors, and during the wedding they have about seven attires. They weigh a lot, so bridesmaids help to dress them.

In eastern Africa, Kenyan brides paint their hands and feet with symbolic patterns of red and black colors. These patterns persist throughout the year and serve as an indicator of the new status of woman. The wedding attire – purple or golden dress, a short cape and a turban should be stored in a safe place for the whole life.

In the north of Africa brides are not much covered with drawings. Berbers, for example, slightly dub girls’ cheeks with honey mixed with ocher, tint brows with black paint, and eyelids with green. The wedding ceremony for the Berber bride is a real test: this day, she has to change seven attires. And all of them are very heavy – magnificent wedding dress with an uncountable number of petticoats, trimmed with silver coins and bells. The required attribute of wedding dresses is a woolen blanket in which she has to muffle herself up, even in spite of the heat.


The children of the Sahara – Tuaregs do not bother themselves with the selection of wedding dresses. Before marriage a bride and a groom wrap themselves up to their heads in long black coverlets, which have slits for the eyes and go into the tent. In the tent they wait for the gray-haired old man wrapped in the same blanket, white colored only. A young couple will spend a few hours in the company with this old man. The elder says magic spells to frighten evil spirits away from the newlyweds and tells them the secret of happiness.

1 Photos of the African traditional wedding dresses


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