I Turned My First Nikkah Experience Into A Mini Fashion Show: See Attached!

From planning a surprise bridal shower to attending a Nikkah, I’ve had a lot of firsts in recent times. And, it’s all because my girl decided to hop on the “I married my best friend” train. (Eye-roll, K). 
The wind didn’t let my DIY cards stay in place but this was fun!

I’d tell you one thing: Planning an event, any event, is not easy. Especially if you are finicky and are continually looking for the most unique options (Like me!) Yet, amid months of brainstorming, mini breakdowns, and rigorous preparations, one thing was clear: K was going to have the happiest wedding. First, a surprise boho-themed bridal shower at her favourite place in the world: the beach! Two days to the Nikkah, I and a couple of her friends plotted and succeeded in dragging (literally) her to her own party! K is the kind of friend who loves to show up unexpectedly with one surprise or the other. So, this was spot on poetic justice. The highlight was having her read notes from anonymous friends out of a DIY jar and guess who wrote what. Or, maybe it was getting her to tell her love story above the deafening sounds of collective Awwwns.


K squealed, gasped, cried, and laughed in turns. That huge face-splitting smile stayed the longest, eyes sparkling with light and marvel. Mission accomplished, we could go ahead and have a proper wedding now!

Nikkah Preminilaries

Running late, but selfie!

I was one of K’s bridesmaids, but I couldn’t make it in time for the pre-Nikkah photos, and you can blame my fastidious Makeup Artist for this. Not that I did not enjoy having my skin worked to near-perfection, and my eyes lined a deep hue, glinting beneath lashes so voluminous that I worried there would be a second ascension if I blinked hard enough. In the end, I did end up looking like an Angel, or a Witch, depending on what defines the word, “striking” for you. I digress.

Full look by Touch by Asoebi Girl.

Fashionably late and all, I swooped in at the main venue of the Nikkah ceremony, wrapped head to toe in customary Muslim outfit. 30 minutes after the scheduled opening time, our lovely bride was nowhere in sight. Why? The culture demanded that if her father wasn’t available to walk her to her seat, the Nikkah proper would be on hold till he came. 30 minutes became an hour, then two. You would think that the ceremony would be rushed as a result? No. For one, K refused to do the walk if her praises were not sung. The bridesmaids stood in twos behind her until the Singers launched into Arabic adulations for our beautiful bride. A glorious moment; I have never felt prouder.

I’d tell you what happens at a Nikkah now,

Talk. Yes, a lot of talk. A beautiful medley of Arabic words, poetic and resonating even though I did not understand a word. Then came a seemingly unending flow of advice delivered by the Imam in Yoruba. While this was going on, K sat as far apart from her partner as possible. “They are not husband and wife until he finishes speaking,” Hameedah (Chief Bridesmaid) whispered to me. I get it, but I was slightly amused at the need to ‘separate’ a couple for customary rites when they have always sat together for as long as they had known each other. By the time the Imam was done speaking, I had taken one thousand selfies and at least four walks to appease my aching joints.

The #Sanif Love Story

However, parts of this speech were not lost on me. In bits of English and the few Yoruba words I have picked up since moving to Lagos, I saw that K was undergoing a lecture on submission. It was a detailed manual on How To Care For Your Husband 101. In another speech, an Elder vehemently informed Hanif (the groom) that he was the Head and she was the neck. The Head must lead his home with utmost dignity, and must never be caught doing ‘shameful’ things like sleeping over at his in-law’s.

The Bride and her parents

Although I am well acquainted with the patriarchal nature of our African culture, I still regarded these speeches in disbelief. Knowing the couple in question, the words filtered from one ear and out of another. Would we not have been better off using all that time to serenade the lovebirds with music instead?

I gave a speech, on-demand!

My second look for #Sanif, in Touch By Asoebi Girl

I didn’t think there would be provision for more speeches, especially since the reception was at the same venue as the Nikkah, the mosque. Before the event, I had thought up a grand surprise speech, then gave up on the idea. Now, out of the blues, I hear my name blaring from the speakers to come forth and tell the story. Completely thrown off-balance but not nervous, I went in. As you can tell, K is dear to me, and so is, by extension, the love of her life.

Should I share this speech or shall we save the mush and keep it moving?

Move, it is. LOL!

My Mini Fashion Show Debut Was At A Mosque.

abaya-styleslace-stylesmodest-fashionasoebi-loversYep, this is what I am going to tell my kids, with a pause for dramatic effect. I took my role as bridesmaid quite seriously, sourcing the fabrics and ensuring that the fine details are covered. Then, I pooled my ideas and presented my Tailor with specific requests. Touch by Asoebi Girl is a fashion brand that creates bespoke and ready-to-wear pieces for stylish and contemporary women.

And, Touch by Asoebi Girl delivered as promised!

Full credits:

  • Creative direction: Chinenye Okechukwu
  • Tailoring: Touch By Asoebi Girl
  • Makeup: Rickies Makeovers
  • Accessories: Chinenye Okechukwu
  • Photography: Temitope Sanyaolu, Mattew Eguavoen, and Chimaobi Ifeji (Shot with an iPhone)

I told you it was a mini Fashion show, didn’t I? As the self-acclaimed assistant bride, I went all out and got something I haven’t done in a long while: A glam-up!

The Aftermath

muslim-couple First off, I can count the weddings I have attended on one hand, and none of them has been an actual friend. I went unsure what to expect but ready to make the best out of whatever happened. For starters, I didn’t get to see much of the couple because they kept disappearing to greet one relative or the other. If you are familiar with the Yoruba culture, you would know how much they love to be welcomed, greeted, and accorded the utmost respect. A bow here, an Ekaaro there, and the occasional appeasing of a disgruntled relative. Tough finding any of the lovebirds for a decent selfie but you bet I did.

Hanif-AlabiFortunately, long after the ceremonies had ended, I and some friends caught the bride and whisked her off to a spot behind the mosque. We would spend the rest of the evening sharing a plate of spicy Jollof, taking photos with the silliest poses, dancing, and laughing. The makeup had long melted down the sides of our sun-beaten faces, and most of us had tossed our headgears and high heels. Yet, immediately word went out that there would be an after-party, we packed up and headed out for #Sanif 2.0, put together by the groomsmen.


If you were wondering if K would get her happy wedding, you already have your answer. My friend has officially begun her new life with a husband. This is so surreal! Sakeenah of raucous laughter in open streets and skilled thievery (Don’t ask!), married?

She got off to an incredibly happy start and I can only hope for an amazing journey for Sakeenah and Hanif. Cheers to even more laughter and discovering new things together.

P.S: Stop calling my phone, K. You have a husband now!



So, Have you ever attended a Nikkah or had to show up for a friend at their wedding? I’d love to read your thoughts in the comment section!






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



Home Shop Cart 0 Wishlist Account
Shopping Cart (0)

No products in the cart. No products in the cart.