Clothing in Northern Ghana is both functional and stylish. Much emphasis is spent on taking care of one's clothes and appearance. Assemble below are various pictures of clothes that you might see if you took a walk through Navrongo or Lawra.


This is Madam Ruth Katero at her stall in the Navrongo market. Notice the very colorful wrap skirt. Color is an essential element of every woman's outfit.


Here's Timothty and his father in their compound's shade structure in Sirigu (a village near Navrongo). As the head of the compound, Timothy's father wears a hand-woven smock with cap, colorful shoulder cloth, tailor made pants, a bead necklace, leather sandals, and a horse tail brush. Timothy is wearing what most young Ghanaians wear: T-shirt, jeans, and his trust pair of plastic slippers (Charlie Worte). "Charlie" is slang for friend and "Worte" is Ga (a language in Southern Ghana) for "let's go." Put together they mean that you can very quickly slip them on and go with your friend whenever he calls.


Here's Victoria on her farm in Janania (a village near Navrongo). Victoria is wearing her older clothes so that it won't matter much if she gets them dirty. Most of all the labor done on this and other small family farms is done by hand. Her clothes which cover most of her body protects from the sun, thorns, and insects.


The smock is the most distinctive dress for Nothern Ghanaian men. It is the traditional dress and is found in Northern Ghana. The material is hand-woven in strips and sewn together. Often symbolic patterns and designs are oversticked on the front and back. The top photo shows the Chief of Kandiga (a village near Navrongo) on the extreme left with his elders. You can spot the chief by his red hat which is only worn by the chief. The bottom photo shows Robert and Martin in their finest smocks holding up a kon-kon they made.

Weddings and Festivals

Here's Nazifat and Mohammed on their wedding day. As you can see they are wearing a fantastic matching set of hand tailored and embroidered clothes.

This is a photo from the 1992 Kandiga harvest festival which shows a man wearing a smock, a quiver full of arrows, a red-belt, and holding up a wooden carving of a snake.

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Last updated on March 9, 2004.

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