Love Is Blind: Nigerian Yoruba Wedding Customs Explained (SK & Raven)

Love Is Blind: Nigerian Yoruba Wedding & Customs Explained (SK & Raven)

Find out more about SK’s Yoruba tribe’s Nigerian cultural customs and wedding traditions that fiancee Raven had to learn on Love Is Blind (Netflix).

We were all excited for a beautiful Love Is Blind Yoruba wedding between SK (Sikiru) Alagbada and Raven Ross. Unfortunately, things fell apart in a deeply shocking way in Episode 10 of season 3. After SK said “I do not,” his mom Ade questioned her own son’s decision as she comforted the heartbroken Raven.

Everyone else seemed too upset to even comment, and even though things might not be over for SK and Raven it definitely cast a pall over the event. Even before SK pulled back, the lead up to the wedding was definitely tense. Raven cried repeatedly and her friends vowed to protect her, while SK’s friends and brother AB tried in vain to calm the groom down. It’s especially sad because this was many Western fans’ first exposure to a Nigerian-style wedding. Let’s look at how these joyous gatherings are supposed to go.

The Love Is Blind Yoruba Wedding Left Out Many Nigerian Customs

Raven and SK were open about their desire to have a wedding that blended Nigerian and American culture. The show did focus on SK’s agbada wedding suit and the gele headwear for Raven and her bridesmaids. The grooms agbada, like SK’s orange one, represents dignity, strength, honor and prestige. The bride’s gele head tie is typically very large and colorful, like the one Raven tried on with SK’s mom. However, during the wedding ceremony she wore a less traditional gele that was kind of a hybrid of western wedding veil, too.

Raven Wearing A Traditional Nigerian Gele On Love Is Blind Season 3

Raven trying on a Nigerian gele with SK’s mom on Love Is Blind season 3 (Netflix).

The independent Raven was not pleased at the prospect of always having to make stew ready for her man and be submissive to please her man. She also didn’t like SK’s mom and other Nigerian wives telling her not to go “gallivanting around Dallas” once she’s married to SK.

It stands to reason that she would not have been a fan of the bride price custom. Traditionally, the price is 5,000 Naira, which is just over $11 USD. Sometimes, the money is even returned to the groom because it’s a symbol of thanks. That probably wouldn’t have mattered to Raven. She did look stunning in her white wedding dress, though.

Another custom that would have caused big problems was the groom prostrating himself before the bride’s family. SK is deeply traditional, but even he would have realized that this would have made Raven and her friends uncomfortable. Not only that, but Raven had practically no family at the wedding.

However, there are some customs that would have worked for the couple. Kola nuts are a staple of Yoruba weddings, which would have appealed to nutritional foodie Raven. There’s also the alaga, or MC, who is expected to entertain the crowd.

An Igbeywayo Where Everyone Is Welcome

The fact that Raven had so few guests was way out of character for the Love Is Blind Yoruba wedding. Usually these affairs host hundreds if not thousands of people. Had SK said yes, he and Raven would have lots of money to pick up off the dance floor. We’ll never know if SK and Raven would have had a traditional money spray. However, the cash-strapped SK could have used the help as he travelled to California for grad school.

Finally, we missed out on the traditional Yoruba wedding songs. Oruka  (which translates to “ring”) by Sunny Nneji seems to be the defending champion of all Nigerian wedding songs. Igbewayo (“wedding ceremony”) by Oritsefemi is used to get the party moving, and Iyawo Mi (“my wife”) by Timi Dakolo is just a sweet love song perfect for slow dances. However, we did see the drums played for the entrance of SK during the wedding ceremony.

Hopeful fans may have taken SK’s refusal as “not right now” instead of “never,” so we might see the couple tie the knot yet. We’ll have to wait until the Love Is Blind season 3 reunion gets dropped by Netflix.

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