Ghana is a beautiful African country located in the west of Africa. Ghanaians are not only just fond of colourful and bright fabrics but also have strong cultural and traditional values attached to their clothing.
In this article, we will talk about the Traditional Ethnic Clothes of Ghana and their cultural essence of it. Fashion represents different forms of art and the uniqueness of materials from the region. In Ghana, Each ethnic group, with its distinct culture across the nation, represents itself uniquely in the way they dress.
Traditional wooden looms of cotton, raffia and wool are existing since old times and they are still considered an important aspect of their fashion.
Kente, Kete and Gonja cloth are used in most of the traditional ethnic clothes of Ghana. With Kente being from the Ashanti region is not only popular in Ghana but in other western African countries. Kete is from Ewe and Gonja is from the Northern part of Ghana.
The national clothing of Ghana is usually made from these fabrics.
Kente – A Traditional Ethnic Outfit of Ghana Kente is a unisex outfit/fabric. But, it is worn by men and women differently. Men wear it as an ancient Greek toga – across one shoulder and around the body. Women wear a two-piece kente: one forms a wrap-around skirt (2 yards long and 45 inches wide piece of fabric) and another one is used as a shawl. A plain-coloured blouse is worn to complete the attire. It is also a traditional ethnic wedding outfit of Ghana.
Kente fabric is globally known for its unique and bright patterns. All these patterns have a symbolic meaning to it. Also, each colour signifies an important aspect of life.
• red – blood; strong political and spiritual feelings;
• pink – calmness, tenderness, and similar qualities; • purple – Earth; healing;
• blue – sky; harmony, peace, good fortune, love;
• green – plants; growth and good health;
• silver – moon; purity and serenity;
• yellow – yolk of the egg; some fruits and veggies; holy and precious things;
• gold – wealth, royalty, etc.;
• white – white of the egg; white clay used in some rituals; healing; purity;
• maroon – Earth; mother; healing and protection from evil;
• grey – ashes; spiritual cleansing;
• black – ageing; strong spiritual energy, the spirits of the ancestors. Isn’t this so amazing, how a textile piece becomes an important part of life and has a value attached to it.
Kente has usually big, bold, square checks pattern completely handwoven. Do you know? Kente is an almost 400 years old type of textile. It was then, woven from raffia palm fibres and the tissue structure looked like a basket.