Korite is major in Senegal but not as major as Eid El Kabir. That is why the level of dressing up is usually tone down. Or so I thought! Apparently it is not the case anymore. I watched a fashion show during Ramadan a few weeks back just to get a sense of what was trending in terms of traditional outfits Senegalese women would wear for Eid. I was blown away. There was a wide range of new styles, embroidery, embellishment, color play . It was a bit dizzying. I was like: "I cannot compete with that!". I had already planned to wear an embroidered tunic my mother gave me a year ago. She told me that it would be fine but after watching the fashion show I started to wonder if I would be a little dressed down. But I neither had the time nor the funds to go make me or buy a new outfit that would be up to par. Thankfully my mother in law who is a designer made a beautiful embroidered tunic that I wore.
Tunic, skirt and scarf - gift from Mother in law
Clutch - Harwin, Houston
Shoes - Saturday market, Dakar
Jewelry - gift from hubby
As usual, I hate the way I tied my scarf. I really need to do something to learn how to tie it properly.
From where I stand!
The outfit was exactly what I was looking for. It is fitted without being tight and long enough. It is heavily embroidered but in a muted way. So it is not so in your face like other embroidery I saw. Moreover, it is a color I like. It is like my mother in law went inside my mind to dig out what I wanted. She also made others for my sister in law and her daughter in pink and green that are very striking. I wished we wore it all at the same time so we could be twinning. The only problem with the outfit is that it is not in cotton but in a fabric called Bazin that my Senegalese people love. It is very beautiful but not suitable for the heat. I wore it once and already developed a small rash. I had to change into cotton clothes. I think that I will wear it again but only during cooler months.
Eid was uneventful. In my country, married women spend Eid at their in laws. The girls of the house aka me, my husband's sister, and my sister in law (my husband's brother's wife) took care of the lunch while my Mother in law cooked the porridge we all eat after the prayer. The taste differs from house to house but this time we had it with a peanut butter sauce that is super heavy but oh so tasty. We call it Ngalax. As per tradition, people in the neighborhood or the family serve each other Ngalax. When I was a kid, my mother's fridge would be filled with Ngalax from our neighbors. Moreover she also sent me to give her Ngalax away. Those were the good old days.
Anyway after we cooked lunch and ate, I went back home to rest. I had been cooking and cleaning under the horrid heat all day and I did not have enough energy to move. But we also had to visit my parents house. Truth be told I did not even wear my Eid outfit on Eid day. I was working all day so I wore clothes I could afford to get dirty. Then when I was off to my parents I was too exhausted to doll up. So I did all that the following day.
I have not spent Eid back home since 2002. Things changed for me but also for the country. But it is still a pleasure to see the gleeful spirit all around, this ambiance of love, the sharing of food and laughter around family and friends. The Senegalese "Teranga" we call it. God willing, it will always be present in Senegal .. And I hope it was present in your home and country my other Muslim brothers and sisters.