Gele is a traditional Nigerian head wrap worn as an accessory to the traditional ‘iro’ (a wrap-around skirt) and ‘buba’ (a loose fitting blouse)
Traditionally, the Gele was used to represent a woman’s marital status. If worn to the right, the woman was married, while if worn to the left, she was single & looking to mingle.
In contrast to the head ties worn in some other African countries, like Ghana, Gele is usually rather large and ornate, and as a result, is associated with ceremonial wear rather than day-to-day usage.
The size of the Gele can also reflect a sign of class, wealth & status.