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Orisa Lifestyle Activities: Week 6
Family Cloth: Aso Ebi (pronounced ah-shaw eh-bee) is family cloth. It is a way for a family to express solidarity through dress. During family events - like weddings, naming ceremonies, and orisa festivals - members of an extended family group would all wear identical fabric to express their shared identity. Traditionally, aso ebi was made from a particular fabric called aso oke (ah-shaw oh-keh), which is one of the most authentic forms of Yoruba country cloth. Today, aso ebi can be made from a variety of cloths, but still retain the traditional tailoring and style. The traditional ensemble consists of a complete outfit, from head to toe. For women, that includes a skirt, blouse, head tie, beaded necklace and matching bracelet. For men, it would include pants, shirt, cap, beaded necklace and matching bracelet. People LOVE aso ebi because it is a way to demonstrate super pride in one's family identity.
Complete the following:
Complete the following:
- Check out this documentary about aso ebi with your family.
- What stood out? What did you like most?
- In what ways does your family express solidarity and shared identity?
- How could your family benefit from wearing aso ebi?
- How could your family modify the custom to accommodate your local resources and lifestyle?
- Give each member of the family a sheet of plain white paper and some colors (crayons, markers, colored pencils)
- Display your family flag and symbols and remind family members of the meanings of each
- Invite everyone to design one or two aso ebi outfits for males, females or both (allow up to 20 minutes for people who wish to add more details. Remind everyone to include beaded necklaces and bracelets)
- Once everyone has completed their designs create an informal aso ebi gallery by asking everyone to post them on a wall where everyone can walk by and enjoy the designs
- Invite everyone to share things they LIKE about each design. DO NOT BE CRITICAL. If you don't have anything nice to say, please do not say anything at all
- Invite everyone to vote on a male design and a female design
- Know. What is aso ebi?
- Commit. When are five annual opportunities for your family to wear aso ebi?
- Practice. Select and plan the first opportunity for your family to wear aso ebi