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HOW TO WEAR A KIMONO blog

Mipo

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I opened a web site which introduces how to wear a kimono with lots of pictures step by step. It also shows various kinds of Obi sash styles for Furisode. Have a fun👍
kimonolovers.blogspot.com/
 
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Tokis-Phoenix

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Hi there and welcome to the forum :wavey: .


It is a good kimono wearing blog but i have a few suggestions for perhaps improving it;

1.. I see you have used shortened names for a lot of the items for wearing kimono, someone wanting to buy these things may not be able to find them online if they do not know the full correct names for them, so i will just name some of the widely accepted full names for these sorts of items;

Step 2;
a. There is another more complex version of the collar stay (Eri Shin) which is slotted onto the juban's collar and is called an "Easy collar" or "kantan haneri" and looks like this;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/search.php

It isn't essential to have these collar shaping accessories, but i do admit they do help a great deal in creating a nice curved low collar :) .

b. The belt in pick 4 is often called a Korin Belt
c. The waist band is often called a koshihimo
Step 3: A koshihimo can be used to tie the kimono around the waist, although i think you should probably state that you should always put the left front panel of the kimono over the right when wrapping the kimono around oneself, as newbies reading the blog might not know this is very important (to put the right panel over the left is the way people dress the dead).
Step 4: The full name of the date belt is "Datejime" while the obi sash board is "Obita" and is very handy for helping prevent the obi creasing at the front.
Step 5: The style/musubi Nagoya obi is most commonly tied in is called "otaiko" or "drum bow/knot" style- there are actually a few ways of tying this style, i guess it depends on your personal preference :) .
Step 6: The red obi sash is often called an "Obiage"- by the way, you tie a really good nagoya obi drum bow 👍 ! By obiage i mean the wine red color length of fabric tied just above the obi in your chirimen kimono and nagoya obi set;

Chirimen Kimono + Nagoya Obi

Origami crane Furisode Obi Sash: I think it may be good to mention that nagoya obi are not really worn with furisode, but rather fukuro or maru obi are a lot better, since they can be tied in a greater variety of bold styles which suit the look of the furisode very well.

Chirimen Kimono + Nagoya Obi: I agree brand new kimono and obi is very expensive (i love your chirimen silk kimono) but i think it may also be good to add that second hand kimono can often be picked up a lot cheaper- there are some very good second hand international sellers of kimono on the internet like Ichiroya, whose price range varies from everything from thousands of dollars to just $30's etc, so can make a more affordable option to buy kimono and related items from 👍 .

Ichiroya's kimono store;

ICHIROYAのブログ

Yamatoku are another good international seller of kimono;

http://www.yamatoku.jp/classic/

And RyuJapan;

http://www.net-shinei.co.jp/antique_ryujapan/index.php

Etc, as well as plenty of stores on Ebay and other auction hosting sites 👍 .

I think your blog is overall very good, i think it larger pictures and perhaps more explanation over the use of certain items/accessories with wearing kimono may improve it though for those people reading the blog who are completely new to the wearing of kimono.
 

Tokis-Phoenix

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I was just thinking of some other stuff you could add to your blog on wearing kimono;


How to find the right length kimono for women;

Kimono vary a great deal in length and width, so to find the right length kimono if you are a woman, you need to measure your total height. Kimono can be up to 5-10cm shorter than your total height or much longer if you want (however if your kimono is very long for your height you may need to make two ohashori/folds at the waist)- the shorter a kimono is, the more difficult it is to make an ohashori/fold at the waist. I am more or less 165cm tall, so when i am looking to buy kimono, i generally aim to get ones 160cm+ long or longer.

How to find the right length juban (if you are a man or a woman);

When you wear juban you do not make an ohashori/fold at the waist, so you should measure yourself from the bottom of your ankles to the top of your shoulders- you should really aim to have a juban that is as close to this measurement as possible. My measurement is more or less 135cm so i aim to look for juban is this length, however i can sometimes get away with wearing juban 130cm in length.
If you are really in love with a juban though but it is too short for your height, you can cut the juban in half and add some extra fabric to it around the waist to lengthen it, either making the juban into a two piece set (hanjuban) or sew it back into one complete juban after the extra fabric has been added. Hanjuban;

http://www.shop-japan.co.jp/english-boku/waso-juban-mod..gif


Men's kimono: Men do not wear an ohashori/fold at the waist when they wear kimono, so the kimono should fit their height as perfectly as possible like a juban.


Finding the right cuff to cuff/sleeve to sleeve width;


A kimono could be long enough for you but its sleeve to sleeve width could be too short (since these things vary a great deal in kimono), to find the find sleeve to sleeve/cuff to cuff width, you should measure the length of your arms outstretched from wrist to wrist. The closer the sleeve to sleeve width of the kimono to this measurement the better, although its fine to have a kimono with a slightly shorter sleeve to sleeve width than your ideal width as long as it doesn't obviously look too short for you of course.



Formality of kimono;

In a way it is just as bad to be overly dressed as it is to be under-dressed in terms of formality for an occasion, so its important to take note of the different types of kimono;

Yukata: an unlined cotton kimono, the least formal of all kimono's, it is best used for unformal town wear or summer festivals or after bath wear etc. You do not wear nagajuban with yukata, although sometimes hadajuban is worn under the yukata.

Komon kimono: A kimono of any type of fabric and which can be unlined or lined, however its main feature is the repeated pattern/design on the panels/bolts of fabric making up the kimono. Komon kimono are generally of un-formal design and are mostly used as town wear or at tea ceremony etc. Examples of komon kimono;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134682/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134621/

Iromuji: Iromuji is a kimono that is one solid color with no designs/pictures/embroidery etc on it, it is more formal than komon kimono but generally less formal that tsukesage or houmongi, it is usually worn in tea ceremony or slightly more formal events than town shopping like grocery shopping, like perhaps visiting museums or garden parties etc.
Example of an iromuji;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/902612/

Tsukesage and houmongi: Tsukesage and Houmongi refer to the placement of the design on the kimono.
A typical tsukesage has a design that covers the lower half of the kimono, a design on one sleeve, and perhaps a design on one of the shoulders too, like this

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134382/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134332/

The design on a tsukesage should not overlap the different panels that make up the kimono.

Houmongi tend to have a design that covers most area's of the kimono but unlike komon kimono is generally not a repeat design that covers all of the kimono like a komon kimono, examples of houmongi;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134618/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/115079/

The design on a houmongi can overlap the panels that make up the kimono.

I think technically houmongi are more formal than tsukesage, however this is not always the case, and you can even get kimono that are both tsukesage and houmongi in design. A lot of how formal a tsukesage or houmongi is depends on the amount of mon/family crests it has on it (it can be up to 5, 3 on the back and 2 on the front) and the general look of the design on the kimono and its motifs. Houmongi and tsukesage are more formal than komon kimono but generally less formal than tomesode.
Houmongi and tsukesage worn for dance are usually very bold in design (so people sitting watching the dancer/s can see the design and colors on the kimono clearly).

Irotomesode: Is a kimono whose design covers only the lower half of the kimono but the background color of the kimono can be any solid color other than black. Examples of irotomesode;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/133782/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/133259/

Tomesode: Is a formal black kimono with a design on the lower half of the kimono but has only up to 3 crests, sometimes "tomesode" just refers to any type of tomesode though.
A black tomesode with 5 crests/mon on it is called a kurotomesode, examples of kurotomesode;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134429/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134424/

Kurotomesode is the most formal kimono a married (or unmarried or widowed but old/mature) women can wear, the most common situation women wear kurotomesode now days is at traditional japanese weddings, for example the mother of the bride would wear a kurotomesode at her daughters wedding.


Furisode: Long sleeved kimono, it is worn primarily by young or unmarried women or girls. Once a woman gets married she is expected to no longer wear furisode, some people say the reason why bridal furisode are so beautiful and richly designed (and often with very bright colors and auspicious motifs) is because it is the last time she will ever wear a furisode.
For unmarried woman, i've heard its acceptable for them to wear furisode up until the age of 25years old, but after this they are expected to stop wearing furisode even if they're still unmarried. I've heard though that in recent times people are becomming more accepting towards young unmarried woman wearing furisode past the age of 25 as long as they still look young enough for the furisode look.
Most furisode you see now days are of a very formal design, in the olden days less formal design furisode were a lot more common, however since young women do not tend to wear furisode for unformal occasions like for daily wear now days, the need for unformal furisode dwindled. The most common occasions a girl/woman might wear a furisode now days is when celebrating her entrance into technical adulthood or when going to a sisters wedding etc.
Unmarried or young women or girls don't have to wear furisode, but the furisode is primarily a young and unmarried womens/girls only kimono, while the black tomesode is primarily for old/mature or married women.

Susohiki/Hikizuri: Literally means "trailing skirt", this term applies to any kimono that when worn properly by the wearer, is long enough to trail along the ground. I think for a kimono to be long enough to be worn as a susohiki/hikizuri it needs to be 30cms or more longer than your total height. Hikizuri/susohiki are mostly worn by geisha, maiko, traditional theater actors and dancers and brides.

You should certainly wear juban and tabi (split toed socks) with any kimono that is more formal than a yukata.
 
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Tokis-Phoenix

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One last bit- the fabric a kimono is made out of can effect its formality as well. Tsumugi is a type of rough silk that as a course/roughish texture to it and is one of the least formal silks, while silks like chirimen silk (prized for its good quality) and rinzu silk (characterized by its glossy soft appearance) are more formal silks.
Meisen silk is usually made into komon kimono and is usually relatively unformal, however most meisen silk kimono you will find are probably quite old since it is not really produced much now days, however it was very popular in the olden days, particularly in the early showa period and taisho and meiji periods etc. Despite being a relatively unformal silk, it is actually apparently quite time consuming to produce.
Cotton is the least formal fabric, hemp is on a similar level however hemp is no longer used to make new kimono in Japan, almost all hemp kimono you will find will be from the early showa period or much older.

I know there are more fabrics, but these are just the ones i can remember from the top of my head for now.
Polyester and synthetic mix fabric kimono are becoming increasingly popular now days since they are less complicated to wash than fabrics like pure rinzu silk (which needs a lot of care taken when washing it), polyester and synthetic mix fabrics can be made to imitate/look like almost every type of fabric (for example i have a good quality synthetic komon kimono whose fabric imitates the look and feel of chirimen silk).


Sha and Ro is a type of weave that creates an almost semi-transparent look to the fabric, Sha and Ro fabrics are for the warmer months wear.
Kimono are either lined or unlined, unlined kimono are for the warmer months wear.

You should also pay attention to the motifs on a kimono since many types of popular motifs also have stuff like seasonal significance attached to them, and it is considered a lot more sophisticated to wear kimono with motifs that are in season/month etc.
 
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Tokis-Phoenix

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Oh, i almost forgot to add that;

A black iromuji with 5 crests/mon is a mourning kimono or mofuku kimono and is only worn by relatives of a deceased person. A mofuku outfit with include a plain black obi, obijime and obiage. You can wear mofuku accessories like plain black obiage and obijime with non-mofuku kimono, however such accessories should probably be only worn with unformal kimono.


The differences between men and women's kimono;
The primary difference between mens kimono, haori and juban is that the sleeves on such garments are sewn up at the back, while on womens garments they are left open.
Mens kimono also tend to have masculine motifs on them like tigers, lions, dragons, horses, sumo motifs, samurai and samurai swords and armour and helmets and stuff etc. Although these sorts of motifs are not confined to men's kimono, for example i have seen plenty of horse and tsuba (sword hand protector) motifs on womens kimono and haori etc.
Mens kimono also tend to have more subdued earthy colors like subdued or dark shades of brown, blue, gray, green etc, however more colourful/gaudy kimono do seem to be becoming more popular amoungst young men.
Men's haori (kimono jacket) also tend to have a design/picture on the inside of the haori's lining rather on the outside (as is common with women's kimono)- from what i have seen, plain black is a very common color for men's haori.

Classic examples of men's kimono;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/133994/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134711/

Classic example's of mens juban;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134389/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/133952/

Classic example of men's haori (the haori have been turned inside out to show the beautiful design on the inside of the haori on its lining);

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134900/

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/134393/

Men wear heko obi or kaku obi with their kimono instead of the greater variety of types of obi that women wear with their kimono, you can also get heko obi for children however it is usually quite obvious if a heko obi is intended for a child or a man, for example;

Men's heko obi;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/132425/

Children's heko obi;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/129656/

Example of a kaku obi;

http://www.ichiroya.com/item/list2/118601/

Etc.

Color is certainly important from the point of view of whether for example a kimono is black or another color like blue or pink, since black is the most formal color for more formal kimono, but it can also symbolize certain things about the wearer.
For example bright colors like bright shades of pink, yellow, blue, green etc are considered to be more suited to younger wearers- if a young woman wore an iromuji kimono for example, this light girlish shade of pink iromuji would be quite appropriate;

http://www.yamatoku.jp/classic/description.asp?tno=80872566

But if an older woman was to wear an iromuji and wanted to wear a pink one, it would be more appropriate that she should wear a softer shadier shade of pink iromuji like this;

http://www.yamatoku.jp/classic/description.asp?tno=80733874

Etc...



With obi for women, the main common types are;

Hanhaba obi: Usually worn with yukata (and sometimes komon kimono), but you can get hanhaba obi for dance, however hanhaba obi for dance always have a very bold design (like thick black and silver stripes). Little girls maru obi have the same sort of measurements as hanhaba obi but often have a more intricate/sophisticated or formal design on them.
Nagoya obi: Usually tied in the drum bow style, it can be worn with all sorts of types of kimono, although not usually with furisode or bridal kimono.
Fukuro obi: Can be worn with all types of kimono. It is rather long and is usually about 10-12inches in width.
Maru obi: Can be worn with all types of kimono. Usually longer than the standard fukuro obi, its usually 11-12inches in width.
(You can get unformal fukuro and maru obi but these are not very common, most fukuro or maru obi are of a very sophisticated and formal design, auspicious motifs like cranes are very common on maru obi in particular)
Pre-tied obi: Pre tied obi are obi that have been permanently tied into a particular style/knot/musubi and come in two parts, the belt part and the obi knot/musubi part (often a bow or a drum knot), pre-tied obi are very handy for saving time when dressing up in kimono and can also be very good for people who want to wear a particular obi style but are not very good at tying it, but want a decent looking musubi to wear thats not going to fall apart/untie itself or loosen up during the course of the day etc. You can get pre tied obi for both men, women and children etc 👍 . The obvious drawback of pre-tied obi though is that the style/bow/knot etc you get the obi in is the style you're stuck with, unlike an obi like a normal maru obi which can be used to tied hundreds of variations of styles/musubi as you see fit etc.
 
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Mipo

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Hi, thank you very very much for the quick reply with lots of advice. I am so glad to read your comments to learn how carefully and deeply you've read my articles. It took so much time!:)

For terms such as Obiita or Datejime, I intentionally did not use those special words, since that site is for letting people know what's going on inside a Kimono.

For shop lists, I knew none of them. I will refer to them in my site.

For other details about the differences for Komon, Tomesode, Momuku, or men or women, those are good things to add. Can I refer your comments in my web site?
Thanks.
 

Tokis-Phoenix

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Hi, thank you very very much for the quick reply with lots of advice. I am so glad to read your comments to learn how carefully and deeply you've read my articles. It took so much time!:)
For terms such as Obiita or Datejime, I intentionally did not use those special words, since that site is for letting people know what's going on inside a Kimono.
For shop lists, I knew none of them. I will refer to them in my site.
For other details about the differences for Komon, Tomesode, Momuku, or men or women, those are good things to add. Can I refer your comments in my web site?
Thanks.



Sure 👍 .

I think it would also be cool to delve into different types of seasonal motifs on kimono as well at some point on the site in the future too- i'm not that great with knowledge on seasonal motifs, but i think it would be good to add a few either way (like water motifs being a summer thing etc).
 

kurayamide

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old women's kimono?

I didn't want to post a new topic, but didn't know where to ask... well, I'll try it here:

I'd like to know which kinds of kimono old women wear... except for the Kurotomesode. Is there a special form, or special colours, or patterns?

sorry for the bad english
 
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