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How to Wear Mushanana (Rwandese Dress)


The mushanana is a traditional Rwandese dress that women in East Africa, mainly in Rwanda, Burundi, and some regions of Uganda, wear. 

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This signature attire consists of a wraparound skirt with a ribbon draped over one shoulder that covers a tank top, camisole, or bustier.

In East Africa, women wear mushananas as their wedding dresses. The fabric should, by all means, be flowing.

Here’s a YouTube video demonstrating how to wear a mushanana.

How to Wear Rwandese Dress

Before moving, you’ll need the following items:

  • A Mushanana skirt
  • An Isinde or sash
  • An underskirt or leggings
  • A camisole or bustier

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Step-by-Step Guide on How to Wear Rwandese Dress

  1. Hold the Mushanana skirt horizontally in front of you, with the long side running from left to right. The shorter side should be at waist level.
  2. Wrap the Mushanana skirt around your waist, arranging the pleats on both sides.  Make sure the back and front are free of gathers or pleats.
  3. Tie the strings around your waist behind your back, moving the right side to the left and vice versa. Make sure it is snug but not tight. The skirt should wrap around your waist at least once.
  4. Take the sash and hold it at one end. Place it on top of your wrapped skirt, just above your hips. Tie the end of the sash where you will place it on your shoulder. That part of your dress should be left open. 
  5. To keep the overlapping layers on your left shoulder from slipping, use a safety pin or a brooch to fasten them.

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Video Credit: Nshuti Creations UG

Nshuti is a Ugandan entrepreneur and fashion designer inspired by sewing African fabric. She also offers sewing tutorials, thrift flip interiors, and DIY arts and crafts tutorials.

People also read: 10 Best Black R&B Songs to Make Your Wedding Special

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Abdul Rashid Sani
Abdul Rashid Sani
Abdul Rashid Sani is a talented and experienced Growth and Content Manager with a passion for writing and building relationships. With a strong background in SEO content writing, paid search and social, and content marketing, he possesses a diverse set of skills that make him an asset to any team. In his free time, Abdul is a huge soccer fan and enjoys writing in his spare time. He is dedicated to continually improving his skills and staying up-to-date with the latest trends and techniques in his field.


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