Traditional cloth weaving is a craft which Ebira women so much regard as their pride.Tracing the history of weaving in Ebira land is synonymous to tracing the history of the Ebira people in entirety.
It is a heritage passed down from the Genesis of the Ebira people, and despite modernity, it is one that will survive till end of the world. While the men were into subsistence farming, and hunting, the women were always home with the occupation of weaving.
It started in a time when there was no thread in use to make the work a little bit easier. At that time, they were using cotton wool “owu tutu” which they blended into thread before they could weave.
Then, there was no family in Ebira land that does not know how to weave, as it was the work of every woman. In the comfort every home in Ebira land could provide, the women learnt weaving from their mothers since it was the major trade then.
Young girls start the lessons from collection of cotton wools from the farm, removing the buds, blending them to thread, followed by learning how to roll and wound light threads to the spool. Then, wounding of thicker threads to a creatively H-carved bamboo stick.
Having fulfilled these stages, they are now taken to the major procedures of weaving.
Fabric weaving is first an occupation before it became the pride of the Ebira women. It is through this, that they are able to support the family and provide their personal needs.
Upogoro, an ancient town in the Ebiraland, boasts of the best weavers. Their products are top demands in Gombe, Kano, Lagos, Cotonou, and other major fabric markets across West Africa.
📷 – Rotr Habib Zakawanu Onoruoyiza