Trendy ladies rock the Ishiagu dress nowadays. We love it. Alas, a few conservative Igbo men are gnashing teeth and shaking heads ruefully. What ails them? Ladies who have boldly entered their ishiagu sacred groves to emerge smoking hot in stylish cuts that turn heads at social gatherings.
The ishiagu chic culture is in your face these days, anywhere you turn – at weddings, fashion shows, on the streets, everywhere.
We asked one egghead to give us an opinion on this phenomenon and this was what he penned down: “The ishiagu cultural resurgence among women has manifested in different cross-over styles for different occasions, an indication that the accoutrements will outlive the grand old folks who not only gave them life but also established them as male pantheons in our autonomous fashion groves.” Anyway, we thought he meant that he liked the new fashion because women wearing it guarantees that ishiagu fabric will outlive his age group.
We found four major styles from the various ways that Igbo ladies are today making fashion statements with the ishiagu fabri -c. These are the wedding mode, culture advocacy, street chic, and avant garde.
The ishiagu culture has fully accommodated Igbo traditional brides in local weddings these days. Most couples who want to show how culturally rooted they are will readily go for the dual ensemble that has unmistakable ishiagu imprints in their blouses, long skirts, and gowns. These have fully replaced a mishmash of styles that hitherto reigned, as our queens struggled to meet up with their men who usually have no problem stamping their cultural identity through their traditional attires. Welcome to the Club of Men, ladies.
And when the deed is done and the couple settles to their forever after, this will be the time to begin to think about how to rock the madam look with the ishiagu as many social events beckons thereafter. We are quite impressed with the way the ishiagu blouse sits on oga madam at social outings – such regal dignity that envelopes the wearer, conferring respectability and responsibility. I mean, you can’t get to the queen wearing her ishiagu to say, “excuse me this dance” – unless you are a solid friend of the husband!
What is happening with ladies’ ishiagu street fashion is an indication that the children are taking note. Our young ladies have become more sophisticated in the ishiagu fashion mix, churning out lots and lots of street designs that keep heads turning and tongues wagging, long after they had sashayed and catwalked past in their bulbous or slim fit numbers. What can we say? Kudos is more than enough compliment not only to their fashion instincts but also to their recognition that there is some place that they came from – a place of which they are mighty proud.
The sophisticated chick is a lot like the fashionista, except that she is seriously pushing the cross-over fashion boundary – from English to Nigeria-Igbo – and doing so with as much subtlety and finesse as convention would allow. I love the creativity – the fact that they are thinking outside the box by using the traditional ishiagu fabrics to continue their chic run, and win.
We cannot end without offering our profound apologies to the conservatives who have been overheard muttering a disapproval; ladies just wanna have some fun sir. And remember that on this matter of ishiagu (lion head), there will always be lions and lionesses in the jungle, no? I won’t make the matter worse by reminding you that in the conclave, the female of the species is the more powerful. I may have caused too much trouble already, so I’m out of here. Fast.
Oh no. Before I go, kudos to the modern men who have not only endorsed this new fashion but enthusiastically embraced their ladies’ participation by promoting power couple wears. Am I the only one that sees the lovely glows that emit from these power couples on social outings? Ladies rock their ishiagu dress because they wanna have fun without gender barriers