There’s no doubting that a Japanese kimono actually thing of beauty.
It’s elegant, traditional and more than simply a little bit cool. But there’s something that a kimono is maybe not.
A kimono is not really easy to wear, when I discovered once I visited Kitsuki Castle Town in Japan’s Oita Prefecture.
This city, a vintage samurai village that’s also home to Japan’s smallest castle, is one of the best places in the country to obtain dressed up in traditional Japanese attire and get a walk.
There’s a rich cultural history become explored, and element of that is learning how to wear a kimono just like a neighborhood.
After showing up in Kitsuki, I happened to be taken fully to Warakuan, a kimono rental shop where you can be dressed by locals who’re specialists inside ancient skill.
I was completely impressed by the entire process of getting wearing a kimono, and I was at awe associated with the ladies who dressed me, who are able to dress on their own in a kimono within 10 minutes.
Trust me, that’s mind-blowingly impressive!
When you’ve ever wondered how exactly to wear a kimono, here’s the step by step procedure we experienced in Japan.
1: pick your kimono
Warakuan has many kimonos to choose from, it is almost impossible to produce a choice.
We went with red, after which had to choose my waistband from another variety. We balanced out the delicate red kimono having a bolder, deep blue waistband and ended up being then ushered to the changing space.
You don’t want any unneeded levels, therefore strip down to your underwear – trust in me, you’ll understand just why whenever you’re through.
Step 3: wear thermals, because it’s snowing outside
Okay, maybe this is just me.
After donning the original Japanese socks – you understand, those in which your big toe is separated from the sleep of the feet to wear the wooden flip flops – I was provided some slim thermals therefore I wouldn’t freeze to death in the snowfall exterior.
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Step four: pad out that waist
I actually do not have the figure of the Japanese woman.
My form – best called hourglass – was something of the challenge towards girl dressing me. To fight this, she covered exactly what do simply be described as a bath towel around my waistline before including other layers.
Step 5: begin with a simple cotton kimono
Underneath the main kimono is just a simple white cotton variation, which helps with warmth plus form.
Step 6: include cords and pins to secure cotton kimono
Absolutely nothing remains in position alone inside procedure.
The white base layer ended up being guaranteed with pins and cords, also it had been then that things started initially to feel…snug.
Step 7: secure waist with velcro band
Things went from snug to rigid following a thick velcro-bound band had been covered around my waistline.
My position magically started to improve and my belly lost a couple of inches, which was making me feel pretty smug. And now we had plenty levels to get!
Step 8: add external kimono
Time for the turn to begin form.
Those inner layers are there any so that the genuine kimono hangs just as it will. However the work’s not over yet.
Step 9: hold kimono in position with clamps
Just like the cotton version, the external kimono are going to be held in position with clamps so it doesn’t slip around since the size is being modified and waist nipped and tucked.
Step 10: shorten kimono making use of endless straps and cords
I am brief.
My kimono was very long.
With a few expert nipping and strapping and tucking, the additional length magically disappeared and my kimono just brushed my feet.
Action 11: lose monitoring of the amount of cords tied up tightly around your waist
I do believe, in the end, there were about fifteen different pieces of fabric wrapped around my waistline at different phases of the procedure.
But in all honesty, we destroyed count.
I don’t even know whatever they all did, or why these were necessary, but the end result was stunning, so I’m maybe not planning to concern it.
Action 12: add pretty waistband
The navy blue waistband I selected at the start was finally wrapped around my midsection, with some fancy tying-up happening during the back.
With no, I have no idea just what that expression on my face is approximately.
Now you’ll really begin to feel like you’re putting on a conventional Japanese outfit, plus the entire impact is merely breathtaking. it is much more unbelievable to know just how much work moved into creating the look.
Step 13: be interviewed for regional news channel
Convinced this is an original experience in my experience, but within seconds associated with waistband being connected, a nearby news camera showed up and I was interviewed about what it felt prefer to wear a traditional Japanese kimono.
I simply couldn’t stop gushing on how complicated the process had been and exactly how talented the women dressing me had been. It truly was amazing!
Action 14: put in a couple of more cords, just for good measure
Just one single more, in fact. A braided cable that went around my center, on the waistband.
Now my look had been complete. Very Nearly.
Step 15: get your hair done
My hair had been expertly pulled and rolled and pinned into destination with a gorgeous floral comb.
Action 16: pose for photos. Bring faux fur.
Still fearing the snow outside, I was given a faux fur wrap only for good measure.
It was then time and energy to pose, together with the journalist I happened to be travelling with, detailed with a samurai sword.
Action 17: walk around Kitsuki Castle Town within the snow
Kitsuki Castle Town is filled with old samurai homes, and site visitors can shop around these homes, complete with stunning gardens, to master just what life was like in the Edo period.
You could or may not be here with regards to’s snowing. I need to admit, the lack of footwear (i recently had slim socks and sandals) made for an extremely chilly stroll, however the levels I became putting on meant I became hot every where except my arms and legs.
Action 18: play a harp in a samurai home
While you’re in a kimono, you could and decide to try some typically common Japanese tasks.
We sipped hot green tea extract, after which attempted a conventional harp-like instrument. The most difficult part had been sitting down, together with 2nd hardest component was waking up once more. Kimonos aren’t precisely conducive to movement.
Step 19: undress, admiring the imprints left in your skin by the cords
Getting dressed most likely took half an hour.
The removal of all of those layers and cords had been a five-minute workout, at the end that I’d some pretty deep imprints in my belly. Kimonos aren’t the faint of heart.
Step 20: keep in mind just what it is prefer to go again.
Changing back into my jeans and jumper felt like slipping into pyjamas. My clothing have not sensed more free and casual than after removing my kimono.
Nevertheless, even with focusing on how restrictive these conventional Japanese garments are, I’d repeat in an additional.
Dressing in a kimono is definitely an amazing way to realize a tiny piece of Japanese tradition, and it’ll provide you with an admiration with this item of clothes as if you’ve never ever had prior to.
Plus, if you’re going to clothe themselves in a kimono anywhere, do so in Kitsuki. The environment is unbelievably breathtaking, and thus perfectly preserved that after a couple of minutes you might in fact think you’ve stepped back in its history…
Because of Tokyo Metropolitan national for inviting me to see and experience what it is want to dress in a traditional Japanese kimono. It’s a day I’ll undoubtedly remember!