Going Native: 9 Rules Of Cash Madame Dressing!


“Madam de Madam!”

“It is a matter of cash…”

When you hear the term “Cash Madam or Cash Madame “ the image of the wealthy , accomplished business woman in the vintage Ken Saro Wiwa written Nigerian Sitcom “Basi &  Company ” readily comes to mind (for those who have seen it).

Albeit the “Madam The Madam” character is but a mere caricature of the African woman of substance, ambition and wealth, it stealthily also upholds the name by which rich, stylish, self-made African women especially in Nigeria are addressed.

The Cash Madam has a distinct aura of class and elegance around her which emanates from the power of her name, fame or achievements.



.The Cash Madam dress sense is an indigenous style common among African women at events .



The style of dressing which is not only epitomized by women in their middle age upwards but also common among young women of all ages.

This fashion style is particularly dominant in weddings, lavish parties a.k.a Owambe and religious festivities et cetra.



But there is always a variance between women who slay this look with panache and those who yet scramble to look the part.

Here are 9 rules to a classic Cash Madame slay!


  1. Wear Lace:

To look Cash Madam you must make your outfit in lace material. Ensure that your lace is expensive or at least looks expensive. That is, quality lace. Some great lace materials still come in moderate pricing.







2. Wear your Buba and Iro with quality Damask or Aso Oke

As the examples below:





3. Wear Gele 

Tie your Gele in an attractive edifying manner. It doesn’t matter if it turns out elaborate as long as it is elegant. The wrapping of Gele is an art form on it’s own so you may well get a trained hand to help if you are having trouble getting it to stand like the crown it is.





4. Keep your colors well Combined 

Every Cash Madam style slayer knows this one rule! The color of your Gele has got to match the color of your Iro and the color of your shoes and bag respectively.



If your Gele has to be another color, let it be the same tint as your lace frock whilst still having the colors of  your bag and shoes match. Either way, there must be some form of color sync.

It ain’t rocket science. Just a simple rule that rocks!

That means you may need to acquire a pair of shoes and a bag that have the same hue as your Gele. .

Oh well, it’s just a matter of cash!

5.  Your lace Buba and Iro or Skirt and blouse must be your fit and must be well sewn

Bad tailoring and faux sizes are not for a Cash Madam. If your outfit turned out wrong get it redone or forget about the Cash Madam native look for that wedding party. Go corporate instead!  Or try Ankara.



6. Wear elegant heels 

Flat shoes aren’t for Lace styles. And I mean the Cash Madam kind.  Thou shalt wear heels. Repeat after me Africanista! “Thou shalt wear….


7. Keep your jewelry classy, bold and dramatic

Whether in solid gold, pearls or diamonds or just golden or silver plated, your neck pieces must speak of substance and finery.


And they must be bold. You don’t have to afford it. You just have to have an eye for it.




There are countless gemstone encrusted costume jewelry and indigenous  beaded necklaces  that you don’t have to break the bank to acquire.



Most times, it’s not about the price but the beauty of the design.




Go for bold, stylish  pieces you can afford.

8. Smell like a million bucks!

Now this rule is important. You don’t walk into an Owambe with the scent of sweat and disaster hanging on your shoulders. Don’t spoil that perfectly arranged native look of yours. Don’t bring shame to that Damask Gele that took you 20 minutes to tie.

Spray yourself in a good dose of fragrant goodness!



Give that reception a scent of your arrival.

9. Invest in extra Cash Madam aaccessories

Like a soft feathered decorated hand fan. Oh yes!


blue 1



Bomb, gorgeously embellished, heavy-duty cash madams can be such a delightful intimidation in an African wedding!



But many of these ladies may not have as much as they would appear.

With the right dress sense , any lady can look the cash madam part.

It ain’t just a matter of cash!  It is also a matter of style and culture.


What do you think?



Photo Credits:












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