Buying a Habasha Dress

Next Sunday is Easter (or ‘Fasika’ in the local language), the biggest celebration for Ethiopian Orthodox Christians. It promises to be an interesting day and we are looking forward to joining in the celebrations with our friends and colleagues. I decided to get myself a local-style dress for the occasion, so headed off to the local tailor in the old part of town. First you have to find the material, choose the style of dress and then get measured up.

The traditional Ethiopian dress comes in many forms but is a white material with borders of embroidery. The local Tigrigna dress is very heavy so I opted instead for a lighter, more modern style with a green border. A group of locals gathered round to enjoy the spectacle and joined in with the price negotiations on my behalf…

A few days later, I came back to pick up the dress and to try it on. Here I am, looking like a local, like a ‘Habasha’. I was told not to smile for the photo by a old man who was passing by. Ethiopians often don’t smile for photos, so this is me in full Ethiopian-mode! Now I am ready to celebrate Easter in style!

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2 Responses to Buying a Habasha Dress

  1. Ahmed Kemal says:

    Thanks for the publisher. That is good thing I see. Aya Ali….

  2. sunburn says:

    you look lovely, even sans smile! enjoy ethiopian easter. we are going to enjoy norwegian easter, which traditionally means skiing (preferably in a tshirt if it is warm enough, and it looks like it this year) a nominal distance before starting a little campfire to grill one’s hotdogs :-) love to you both!

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