During Black History Month, one of the easiest and most vibrant ways to get an African look is by wearing a kaftan. These long, flowing dresses are easy to slip into, and instantly send an African message. They're affordable, they fit nearly every size, and they're comfortable for casual wear yet dressy enough for any formal occasion. The kaftan is widely worn in West Africa, where it is often referred to as a 'boubou'. It is usually worn with a matching headwrap; called a gele in the Yoruba language. Men also have a version of the 'boubou' although it is worn with pants, a shirt, and a kufi cap. The kaftan became popular in the US during the 1960's, following the black pride movement. It has become increasingly popular thanks to African immigration, and it is often worn during weddings, graduations or other special occasions.
Kaftans in Weddings and Funerals Kaftans are very popular during wedding ceremonies in West Africa. The brides kaftan should always be the same color as the groom's dashiki. The traditional West African color for weddings is white. The most popular non-traditional color is purple or lavender, the color of African royalty. Blue, the color of love, is also a common non-traditional color. Most women will wear black kaftans to funerals, although sometimes black and red is worn together. Where can I find a Kaftan? You can find a huge selection of kaftans and other African garments at the Africa Imports web site. Click Here to go directly to the web site, or Click Here to see a wide selection of African women's dresses, skirt sets, and kaftans.