October 24, 2014

Essays by AF on Yukata

Speaking of kimono books, several people have asked me if I have published anything on kimono, and the answer is I have published two essays on yukata both of which are parts from two different chapters of the book on yukata I have been working on in my spare time for several years now. The reason I published these two sections of the book is partly because of the publish-or-perish scenario in academia, and also because I wanted an example for the publishers of how I envision the book and how I would like the layout of the book. The second essay is a better example of what I wish for the layout with small box insets explaining the terms, with the Sino-Japanese characters and pronunciation included, for ease of reading along, instead of a glossary at the end.

The first essay, “Naga-ita Chūgata Aizome Dyeing Technique,” is part of the chapter on the dye techniques used for yukata; this essay based on an interview and observation of Noguchi-san who is the master of a workshop that has been dyeing fabrics using this method since the late Edo – early Meiji period. If you read the essay, you will find that the Noguchi Some-Kōjō workshop began from dyeing the minute stencil designs, now called Edo-Komon, used for the kamishimo garments of the military class. There are several other techniques also used for dyeing yukata, and I plan to include in the book similarly detailed descriptions of at least three other common techniques still used today, including Arimatsu shibori.

The second essay I published, “The History of Yukata Fashion: Part I Edo Period,” forms part of the first chapter of the book on yukata and gives a brief explanation of the development of yukata in the Edo period. The second half of this chapter, not yet published, will bring the history of the yukata into the 21st century.

*I should probably also mention that the term “hemp” in both articles is a translation of the Japanese term asa 麻, which includes a number of different but somewhat related bast fibers, but now I kind of wish I had used “ramie” as a translation instead.

Both essays are available online, if you wish to download and read them.

2010, The Naga-ita Chugata Aizome Dyeing Techinque, 跡見学園女子大学文学部紀要 (Journal of Atomi University Faculty of Literature)Vol.45(2010.9)、p. 1-9.

2014, 浴衣の着こなし史1 : 江戸時代 The History of Yukata Fashion: Part I Edo Period, 跡見学園女子大学文学部紀要 (Journal of Atomi University Faculty of Literature). Vol.49 (2014. 3)、p.101- 112.

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auberginefleur at 15:25|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: Terms & Info 

October 10, 2014

AF’s Kimono Calendar SEPTEMBER 2014

By now any poor soul who follows my blog has realized, my coordination for September was all about the Textile Symposium in LA. I had one tiny carry one on, and that was it, to fit all my kimono and kimono accessories in. So, I had to limit myself to 3 kimono and 3 obi, which turned out just fine for 6 days. In fact I had possible ensembles left over. I thought I might continue to wear the left-over ensembles (poor things) after I returned to Indy, but only ended up doing one more ensemble one the 25th. I could still have worn the Blue Nagoya Obi with the Grey Kurume Kimono, and the Hakata Hanhaba Obi with the two tsumugi kimono, plus the Hakata Hanhaba Obi is reversible, so all told I still had 5 possible ensembles left! However, the final 5 ensembles weren’t as pleasing as the others, so I just moved on.

When I left, LA was in a heat wave, but Indy when I arrived was in full-blast autumn with surprisingly low temperatures. Here I was betwixt late summer (in LA, I wished I had brought summer kimono) and already fall in Indy. Hence, why I wore the mustard hanahaba obi with the grey kurume kimono, trying to use color to create a more fall ensemble. I was about to put the cotton-ramie Dots (dubbed by FB friends the Dalmatian) away for the year, but decided to wear it one last time first. (I actually even wore it one more time after that, as you will see when I post Oct’s calendar).

With the purple strip Hanhaba obi on the indigo katsuo-stripe kimono, I was practicing a musubi Mr. K-san had put on FB, that supposedly was the musubi the geisha of Edo wore when invited on a Yakatabune pleasure boat in summer, called appropriately enough the Yakatabune-Musubi.

The 3 Kimono:
1) Kurume-Gasuri Cotton Hitoe Kimono
久留米絣 単衣
2) Beige and Blue Plaid Silk Tsumugi Hitoe
3) Tōkamachi Silk Tsumugi Hitoe Kimono with floral motif (cute dots in shibori)
十日町紬 正絹 とおかまちつむぎ 白地に描象的な花柄 時代物

The 3 Obi:
1) Hakata Hanhaba obi, white and purple reversible
多織 献上柄 半幅帯 小袋帯
2) Kimono Blue Nagoya Obi, floral motif (probably kikyō flowers, and probably shioze fabric)
3) Ebi-cha (Maroon) Nagoya Obi with cute butterflies

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auberginefleur at 23:42|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono Autumn (Hitoe) | Kimono: My Collection Etc.

September 21, 2014

AF's Coordination for Textile Symposium 2014

What I Really Wore... actually pretty close (see first thoughts here)

* Some the images were taken in a mirror. Don’t worry, I am wearing my kimono properly left-over-right.

Kurume-Gasuri Cotton Hitoe Kimono

久留米絣 単衣
Hakata Hanhaba obi, white and purple reversible
博多織 献上柄 半幅帯 小袋帯
Obiage, crimson and silver
Obijime, burgundy-purple narrow belt

All I had to do this day was get myself on the airplane, shuttle to UCLA, and check in. So, I wore my most comfy kimono, plus being cotton I thought it was sturdy enough not to stretch at the derriere while seated on the plane for hours, and I was right. With luggage and stuff, I didn’t want to use one of my fancier obijime-obidome sets, in case they might get damaged, and I thought the crimson-silver obiage just worked best with the ensemble. I forgot to take my cellphone out of my obi before going through the x-ray machine, which caused a search of my obi, but the lady was very kind about it, as I pulled everything out of my obi, including my obi-ita board.

WED The 10TH
Beige and Blue Plaid Silk Tsumugi Hitoe Kimono
Blue Nagoya Obi, floral motif (probably kikyō flowers, and probably shioze fabric)
Obiage, crimson and silver (with the crimson portion showing)
Obijime, crimson-maroon narrow obijime cord
Obidome, white with crimson flower (here worn showing the back flower petal)

This day I went to the pre-symposium workshop on early dyebooks at the Getty research Institute. I saved what I considered by best outfit for the following day, which was the opening of the symposium. It was quite hot outdoors in this kimono, but luckily we were inside most of the time. After the symposium I went out the friends for drinks, where it was too noisy to talk, but we had great conversations walking there and back from the UCLA campus.

THU The 11TH
Tōkamachi Silk Tsumugi Hitoe Kimono with floral motif (cute dots in shibori)

十日町紬 正絹 とおかまちつむぎ 白地に描象的な花柄 時代物
Ebi-cha (Maroon) Nagoya Obi with cute butterflies
Obiage, 1st white with maroon shibori dots, 2nd purple and maroon clamp resist silk textile
Obijime, reversible purple and white

This I thought was the nicest ensemble of the bunch I brought and saved it for the first day of the symposium and the opening event in the evening. This ensemble did get the most comments, and many people of various nationalities asked to take pictures with me. I started out with a white obiage with crimson dots in shibori, but found this gorgeous silk scarf at the vendors there. It’s from Bhuj in Gujurat NW India and is clamp-resist dyed in purple and maroon. It was not cheap, but it just called to me; I couldn’t resist! Although this kimono is much cooler than the beige plaid I wore the day before, with heat and worry about spilling something on this rather nice kimono, I decided to do easy and casual and cooler the next day!

FRI The 12TH
Kurume-Gasuri Cotton Hitoe Kimono

久留米絣 単衣
Hakata Hanhaba obi, white and purple reversible
博多織 献上柄 半幅帯 小袋帯
Obiage, purple and maroon clamp resist silk textile
Obijime, reversible purple and white

I met a friend for a very early breakfast, and never did get a chance, or remember, to take a picture of myself. Good thing I decided to go casual and easy, since I had to get up early in the morning! The more I wore this Kurume-gasuri kimono, the more I became enamored of it all over again. Coupled with the Hakata hanhaba, obi—this time worn with the purple side out—it was cooler, lighter, less worrisome, and just way more comfortable.

SAT The 13TH
Tōkamachi Silk Tsumugi Hitoe Kimono with floral motif (cute dots in shibori)

十日町紬 正絹 とおかまちつむぎ 白地に描象的な花柄 時代物
Blue Nagoya Obi, floral motif (probably kikyō flowers, and probably shioze fabric)
Obiage, white with maroon shibori dots
Obijime, crimson-maroon narrow obijime cord
Obidome, white with crimson flower

Today was the day we went to LACMA, and of course I was beside myself with excitement about seeing the Meisen kimono exhibition there. Part of my theme for this whole trip was to do a number of ensembles in a retro Taishō-esque style in honor of this exhibition. Plus, I thought there would be a number a people at this symposium who really knew about kimono (actually as it turns out, there were very few), so I wanted to dress well and appropriately, yet in somewhat comfortable and every-day wear kimono. It being mid-September already I did not feel comfortable about wearing summer kimono in such a crowd, but it was SO HOT, I really regretted not bringing another summer kimono instead of the beige plaid silk hitoe. The exhibition, btw, was fantastic, but it is a shame they did not do a catalogue.

SUN The 14TH
Kurume-Gasuri Cotton Hitoe Kimono

久留米絣 単衣
Hakata Hanhaba obi, white and purple reversible (purple side out again)
博多織 献上柄 半幅帯 小袋帯
Obiage, purple and maroon clamp resist silk textile
Obijime, burgundy-purple narrow belt

It was time to go home. The symposium was fantastic, and I made some wonderful new friends, but I was pooped. I has signed up to go to a post-symposium, tour, but the time was changed to meet even earlier, and with exhaustion and the need to pack, I just cancelled it and spent a relaxing day around campus and re-visiting the Textiles of Timor exhibition at the Fowler Museum. Once again, I wore my comfy Kurume-gasuri hitoe for the travel back to Indy.

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auberginefleur at 06:01|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono Autumn (Hitoe) | Kimono: My Collection Etc.

Orchestra Plays to Feline Pianist

auberginefleur at 02:54|PermalinkComments(0)Tsurezure Misc Notes 

September 09, 2014

AF's Coordination Conundrums for Textile Symposium 2014

The photo BELOW shows my first thoughts on what to bring to wear for the Textile Society of America Symposium 2014; ABOVE shows my most recent thoughts. Now it remains to be seen what I actually pack and wear? Any thoughts? Comments? (comments here)

Textile Society of America Symposium 2014

(AF’s of Special Interest picks)


9/11 (THU) Sessions
2D. Alternative Plant Fibers: Preservation, Development, Sustainability
Chair: Yuko Fukatsu
Location: South Bay Room
1. Lesli Robertson: Ugandan Bark Cloth: A Model for Evolution and Innovation
2. Soraya Serra-Collazo: Maguey Hammocks: A Weaving of Resistance in Puerto Rico
3. Yuko Fukatsu: Traditional Textile Design for Social Innovation toward Sustainability in Japan
4. Tatsuhiko Murai: Changing of Kudzu Textiles in the Japanese Culture

3A. Explorations into Natural Dyes
Organizer and Chair: Dominique Cardon*
Location: Grand Horizon Salon A
1. Eduardo Portillo and Maria Eugenia Davila: Natural Dyes and Aesthetic Search
2. NgocAnh Luu Dam: Reviving Indigenous Knowledge of Indigo Dyeing in Minority Communities of Vietnam
3. Marine Nora Toussirot: Research into Natural Dyes from the Plant Biodiversity of New Caledonia and the Kanak Cultural Heritage
4. Katherine Hattori: From the Ground Up: New Ideas for Natural Dyes in the Fashion Industry
5. Dominique Cardon: “Extreme” Dyeing with Natural Dyes

4B. Māori cloaks
location: Fowler Museum, Deutsch Seminar Room
Tharron Bloomfield: Māori Cloaks, Māori Voices: Examining Objects from the Past and Creating Relationships for the Future
Suzanne MacAulay: Chronology, Mythology, Invention: John Bevan Ford’s Maori Cloak Images

9/12 (FRI) Sessions
5E. Histories of Textile Arts—and How to Teach Them
Organizer and Chair: Birgitt Borkopp-Restle*
Location: West Coast Room
1. Cecilia Aneer: Technical Skill in a Theoretical Perspective – Teaching Textile History at Uppsala University, Sweden
2. Ariane Koller: A Department for the History of Textile Arts at the University of Bern
3. Pascale Gorguet Ballesteros: A New Program for the History of Dress, Fashion and Textiles at the University of Paris IV – Sorbonne
4. Sumru Krody: A New Unit for Study and Research: The Textile Museum and George Washington University in Washington, D.C.
5. Feng Zhao: Teaching Silk History in China

6B. Textiles in China: Identity, Literacy and Communication
Chair: Lee Talbot
Location: Grand Horizon Salon B
1. Mei Rado: Imitation and Invention: Weaving “European-Style” Silks under Qing Imperial Patronage
2. Rachel Silberstein: Words and Symbols: A Preliminary Study of Literate Communication in Chinese Embroidery
3. Gloria Gonick: Innovation and Preservation of Manichaean Textiles in Southern Coastal China in the Seventeenth to Twentieth Centuries
4. I-Fen Huang: Embroidering for the Nation: Embroidered Portraits and the Invention of an Artistic Tradition in Modern China

7D. Facing Challenges: Global Development
Chair: Michele Hardy
Location: South Bay Room
1. Deborah Carlson: The Crafted Textile and Social Change
2. Toshiyuki Sano and Yuko Matsumoto: Changes in the Way of Traditional Cloth Makings and the Weaver’s Contribution in the Ryukyus
3. Shannon Ludington: Painted Clouds: Uzbek Ikats as a Case Study for Ethnic Textiles Surviving and Thriving Culturally and Economically in the 21st Century
4. Louise Hamby: New Directions in Australian Aboriginal Fabric Printing

8E. Panel Discussion: Saving the Day: Groundbreaking Design and Textiles for Science Fiction and Fantasy Film
Organizer and Moderator: Deborah Landis*
Location: West Coast Room

9/13 (SAT) Textiles in Museums, Chaired by Sharon Takeda, head of Department of Costume and Textiles, LACMA

New Directions: New Ways of Thinking, Chaired by Matilda McQuaid, Curator, Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution

LACMA 「KIMONO FOR A MODERN AGE」Exhibition, July 5, 2014 – October 19, 2014 (pdf file here)

Exhibition reviews:
*These Gorgeous Vintage Kimonos Will Change The Way You Think Of The Japanese Garment
*WSJ: The Japanese Wear Art and History
*LACMA Press Release


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auberginefleur at 00:45|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: My Collection Etc. | Kimono Autumn (Hitoe)

September 08, 2014

AF’s Kimono Calendar AUGUST 2014

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auberginefleur at 05:51|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: My Collection Etc. | Yukata & Kimono (Usumono)

September 07, 2014

紅葉情報 2014 Fall Leaves Forecast for Japan・Tokyo Etc

StarTwinkling See also, The Color of Autumn in Japanese Poetry

The next most important thing in Japan after Cherry Blossoms, is the fall colors, called Kōyō (紅葉) "crimson leaves" in Japanese.

The fall leaves are still being predicted (WeatherNews et al)to be at their best in the Tokyo area around the third week of November or so, but some have reported (as of September) spotting colored leaves already in some areas, as can be seen in the large map above.

* Click on the maps below to interactive fall color maps at their original site. (Beware though, some of the sites may not have been updated yet for 2014.)


Rurubu Leaf Forecast Map:
るるぶ.com 紅葉とれたて便


Weathernews Leaf Progress Map
Weathernews 紅葉情報マップ
(requires Flash Player)

2012 Mapple-Net

Mapple Net Interactive Map:
まっぷる 紅葉地図


Walker Plus Fall Leaf Map:


Yahoo Leaf Scenic Spot Map:
(requires Adobe Flash Player)
Yahoo 全国の紅葉スポット


Enjoy Tokyo's Autumn Leaf Famous Places:
* Tokyo: 東京の紅葉
* Tokyo Environs: 神奈川・千葉・埼玉の名所


Japan Tourism Association:
Tokyo Famous Places for Fall leaves:


English Guide:
"Japan-Guide.com" Leaf Guide in English

* See also Enjoy Tokyo:

Guide to Chrysanthemum spots: 菊花展&菊の名所

Guide to Cosmo Flowers Spots: コスモスの名所

Guide to Autumn Roses: 秋のバラ園ガイド

Guide to Autumn Festivals: 秋祭り特集

Guide to Autumn Events: 季節のおでかけ特集

* See also in English:

Japan Times: Japanese festivals and fairs in and around Tokyo

Japan National Tourism Organization: Autumn Leaves & Plum Blossoms

* Related Posts on AF's Now & Then

* The Color of Autumn in Japanese Poetry

* Flowers & Festivals Category

* Kimono Autumn (Hitoe) Category and Kimono Calendar: November 2013

* Completely Unrelated:

Fashion Trendsetter: SpinExpo Autumn/Winter 2014/2015 Fashion & Color Trends


auberginefleur at 03:54|PermalinkComments(0)Flowers & Festivals 

August 27, 2014

〔普段着〕 と〔季節ルール〕 と 〔5月・9月〕がぶつかる問題

Everyday-wear Kimono vs. Season Rules vs. Temperature Reality

〔普段着〕 と〔TPO〕(主に季節ルール)の問題





〔普段着〕 と〔5月・9月〕の問題






〔7月8月〕:あらぁ? 絹もの?
7月8月と言えば、薄物(絹の絽、紗など)と、やはりゆかたですよね。しかし、AFは夏物が好きで、好きでたまらない!ゆかた(綿麻、綿絽)と祭りの浴衣は勿論ですが、それ以外はいっぱい楽しい夏物があります。どこから始まればいいのでしょうか。例えば、近江上布、小千谷ちぢみの麻ものから、琉球絣、夏大島などの絹ものがあります。また、芭蕉とかアガーベ(桐板布・トンビャンフ)とかとういう靭皮繊維(ジンピセンイ、bast fiber)のものもあります。やはり、楽しくて、楽しくてたまらない!ですが、そのものを買うと懐が寒くなります。そのところでも、夏に合うと言えば(笑)。





〔普段着〕 と〔TPO〕 と 〔5月・9月〕との問題の結論


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auberginefleur at 03:41|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: Terms & Info | 着物のつれづれ

July 31, 2014

AF’s Kimono Calendar JULY 2014

I have long wanted this yukata, but couldn’t make up my mind whether to buy it, that it is now almost impossible to find. This is a fairly famous yukata by Shiorian, famous because it has been in magazines everywhere. So, not only is it very much NOT a mine-only yukata, the wearer is automatically compared with the fashion model in the magazines—not a pretty picture. Also the ro-gauze fabric is a creamy color that I didn’t think would be becoming on me. Hence, my dithering about this purchase. But, when one suddenly became available after many years, I just grabbed it up without thinking.

BTW, I think the original had the ro running vertically, which is rare, but this one has the ro running in the standard horizontal. Although I do know that the motif is actually another plant, I think this looks like the sasa bamboo, on which one ties tanzaku make-a-wish cards for the Tanabata weaver-girl-star and herder-boy-star festival, which in the old lunar calendar is this weekend.

If you have been paying attention to my kimono life, you poor soul, you may remember I accidentally purchased this kimono, which is a cotton-ramie-blend Ojiya Chijimi, when I was back in Japan for an art history symposium in May. I couldn’t afford both it and the obi, actually I couldn’t really afford the kimono either, so had intended to wear it with a light blue ro Hakata Nagoya obi that I already own.

The thing is, since I have to drive everywhere (it being America), Nagoya obi’s are a pain to drive in. So, I could just as well have left almost all my Nagoya obi in Japan, and brought all (or however much could fit in the luggage) my hanhaba (half-width) obi with me to America instead. So after much hemming and hawing about which of the ONLY FIVE hanhaba obi I have with me to wear, I went with this purple Hakata obi worn with the reverse plain purple side on the outside.

Actually in my conundrums about the coordination for the last ensemble, I had a brilliant thought for the next time I wear the same kimono, but really wanted to wear another kimono for the end of the month. This blue plaid cotton-ramie blend is probably my favorite kimono, and while it is also well-known because it stands out and is often reproduced in magazines, it is more or less my signature kimono. I haven’t been feeling well since about the last time I wore a kimono, so this very comfortable kimono was just the right thing.

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auberginefleur at 01:51|PermalinkComments(0)Yukata & Kimono (Usumono) | Kimono: My Collection Etc.

July 22, 2014








*長襦袢の着方の動画はこちら→ 長襦袢の着方







夏の場合、それぞれあるのですが、普通は八寸帯という八寸(約24.2センチ)の幅、単(ライニング無し)の帯を結びます。夏の名古屋帯は絹絽、絹紗、絽綴, 麻などの色々あります。おすすめは、普通の絹八寸帯か、博多の八寸帯です。それなら、春から秋まで結んでもいいし、普段着としては一年中でも結ばれます。

*名古屋帯の詳しい説明リンク→ 名古屋帯について
また、All about Nagoya Obi





*お太鼓結びの動画こちら → お太鼓結ぶ


お太鼓結びと違って、最後に掛を入れるのではなくて、最初の半結びしてから直ぐに掛を入れて、後は省略の結ぶにする。(角出し結びはまた違います → リンク


*銀座結びの動画こちら → 銀座結び(前結び)






AF says enjoy summer 2

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auberginefleur at 12:25|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: Terms & Info | 着物のつれづれ

July 15, 2014




















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auberginefleur at 01:20|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: Terms & Info | 着物のつれづれ

June 30, 2014

AF’s Kimono Calendar JUNE 2014

Kimono Calendar 2014 JUNE photo_Page_1

2014-06-14 pointillized Upon arriving in the US-of-A in April, I immediately wished I had put my Katsuo-jima (bonito-stripe) indigo hitoe kimono in my suitcase, because I can just throw it on like a pair of jeans and wear it anywhere without worrying about the kimono. Plus, Indianapolis became much warmer, much faster than I had been prepared for. Which was good, Western clothes wise, because I had not come adequately supplied with Western clothes for a truly cold climate. So when the box of kimono I had shipped to Indianapolis arrived, the first thing I put on was this Katsuo-jima cotton kimono (below). Boy, was I a happy camper!

* All the images below were taken in a mirror. Don’t worry, I am wearing my kimono properly left-over-right.

2014-06-04 denim n shibri dress

The first time I wore it with a white and lavender hanhaba Hakata obi, that thankfully I had enough sense to bring it with me in my suitcase the first time around, because it matches just about everything. This handy obi came as a freebie with an eba-moyō Shibori yukata I bought (probably) last year. Unfortunately I do not seem to have a picture of the back, but with rapid simple dressing and driving a car, I have pretty much been tying my obi bow in what I call a Kawari Kai-no-kuchi. There is a picture of it in the May calendar post, if you want to see what this type of bow looks like. Since I do not have a picture of the back, I paired the photo with a casual Shibori dress I wore for a house party held for my friend’s son’s graduation.

2014-06-11 denim f-n-b

The next Wednesday I wore it with a Stripe Hassun Nagoya obi tied in a tsunodashi bow, which is easy to do, becomes less disarranged than an Otaiko bow in the rough-and-ready lifestyle of America, and it also seems to be more becoming for me for reasons I myself do not understand, just a hussy at heart I imagine… While wearing this obi, midway through I decided wearing the obijime cord diagonally worked better with the stripe design of the obi. What do you think?

2014-06-14 front n back

Next my special order cotton-ramie yukata arrived, and I couldn’t resist not putting it on immediately. So I went to the museum on Saturday to get some work done in the peace and quiet, also I have no interment access but for my smartphone at home. In the evening, I walked up and down the river near the museum and had a great time talking to all and sundry I met there, including the family who were fishing there. It made me think that may be the only way to get fresh fish in Indianapolis. Oh, and I pointillized myself at the FACE TO FACE: THE NEO-IMPRESSIONIST PORTRAIT, 1886-1904 exhibition while there (see smaller photo at top left).

2014-06-18 front n back 3

Then the main event. My talk for the curators and docents etc. at the museum introducing the research I am doing while on sabbatical in the US. Since the museum is kindly hosting me, I thought it might be nice if they had some idea of what I was doing while here. I wore the only really fancy kimono I brought to the US, this silk gauze “sha-awase,” a type of kimono which has two layers of gauze, a plain outer and a dyed design inner that subtly shows through the semi-transparent outer layer. Technically this kimono can be worn only in the last week of May or first week of June, making it the most extravagant of all kimonos. Not that everyone knows this and wears it appropriately, but if you have seen something similar in the late summer – early fall, you probably saw a nijū-sha (aka tsūfū-ori), which has the colored design woven into the gauze and is not lined, and this kimono can be worn from late May to late August (possibly early September depending on temperature and daring). Anyway, I first saw such a kimono walking in Ginza, stalking Mama-san’s to spy on their kimono, didn’t know what it was but immediately wanted one. But, they are not affordable new, and it was a long time before I found a used one, let one I could afford.

Anyway by mid-June, although still warm and not yet hot, it was already too hot and humid to wear this kimono comfortably—it is definitely not a kimono to be worn in the peak of summer! Hence, for me, from thereon it has become yukata and summer kimono season. Stay tuned for more of my summer kimono life in the US…

2014-07-02 WED Shiroian Shidare-Yanagi ensemble

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auberginefleur at 02:12|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono Spring (Hitoe) | Kimono: My Collection Etc.

May 31, 2014

AF's Kimono Calendar: April-May 2014

Kimono Calendar 2014 May Word 2-photo_ed

OR, my kimono life in the US-of-A

So, as many of you (FB friends) already know, I am in the US for a year on sabbatical from my university, doing research on summer kimonos and yukata in American collections.

I arrived here on April 1st and between the issues involved in renting an apartment and buying a car—I have no income in the US (since I have a fellowship from my university) so just image what all the agencies involved thought of that—anyhow, initially I had no leeway to get myself in kimono. Although, perhaps, if I had just showed up in kimono either all and sundry would have thought I was even weirder than they already thought, or maybe they could have understood my situation better and made the whole thing less of a hassle, but most likely the former…

Once that was all settled, I had planned to wear kimono every Friday—you know, “dress-down-Friday” or “casual Friday,” but it rained, EVERY SINGLE FRIDAY. So, it’s now “Kimono Wednesday” at the museum that is hosting me for my sabbatical.

2014-5-7-wed-7So, my first kimono day turned out to be the last Wednesday in April. The next Wednesday I also did an introduction to kitsuke (how to wear kimono) for those at the museum who were interested. Three people owned kimono, all in the conservation department. I dressed two that day and another on the next day because she had been out the previous day.

I had meant to bring seven kimono the first time around (I later sent 23 more to myself in the US from Japan), but apparently brought six: Sakura motif awase (lined), Purple stripe awase, Pink Ojiya awase tsumugi, Taishō era light teal awase, Blue bingata awase, and Beige and blue plaid hitoe (unlined) tsumugi. Probably the seventh didn’t fit in the suitcase in the end. (I also packed several obi and two nagajuban and had to bring some Western clothes, lol). My lily hitoe I sent in the box later, and apparently gave up on bringing my purple yūki kasuri tsumugi hitoe, and how could I have left out my pink bamboo hitoe…

In all honesty, leaving Japan is like ripping my soul from the fabric of my life in Tokyo, and if it not for bringing my kimono to console me, I could never have done it, which explains why I spent more time planning what kimono to bring than anything else…

* All the images below are taken in a mirror, hence they are reversed. Don’t worry, I am wearing my kimono properly left-over-right.
* すべての下の写真は鏡で取ったので、左右が逆になっていますが、ご心配なく、着物は左上を間違いなく着ています。


2014-05-07 front n coord

2014-05-12 front n back

2014-05-07 collar n coord 2

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auberginefleur at 02:13|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono Winter (Awase) | Kimono: My Collection Etc.

May 06, 2014


Wearing kimono like yukata, wearing yukata like kimono, what’s that all about?! (Sorry it is in Japanese)

AF Fudangi Kimono












(1)超カジュアル:盆踊り、近所での納涼の散歩、銭湯上りの為のシンプルな素浴衣(直接素肌に着る浴衣--襦袢無しとのこと←下着無しという意味じゃないよ!)は、特に若い女性、若い男性の場合が、どうしてもそれよりセクシーな服はないと思うが… 年増でも、夏らしい。

Takashimaya 09-2(2-A)中間(今は一般的かな):お祭り、花火大会、デート用などの鮮やかな(木綿かポリの)浴衣、若者向きでしょうか。カラフルで、ガイジンズの方々が多く好む浴衣。わぁ〜、日本全体は華やかなになりますとの感じ。せっかく日本にいらして、和服の姿の日本人が見たいガイジンズ方々にもおもてなしにもなるでしょう。(「おもてなし」の考え方は他の方からとった、ごめんね。Mrs. K-さん!)



Cotton Kobai KS Natsu 05-2



* どこで読んだか覚えてないけど、某歌舞伎役者が歌舞伎の観覧で浴衣について聞かれた時、ジーンパンツよりはまだましだと答えただそうだ。

AF in Chidori YukataAFの浴衣の着為し






わぁ〜、人生は楽しい!が、おすすめできるかどうか… が、やってみれば、何を言われるか、も、一つの楽しみのでしょうか。 

*AFの浴衣姿のそれぞれ(去年)は こちら

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auberginefleur at 02:12|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: Terms & Info | 着物のつれづれ

May 03, 2014


Why are Japanese people afraid of kimono? Why do they think wearing kimono is so difficult? Because they have been made to feel that way by kimono specialists! (Sorry it is in Japanese)

AF says, Enjoy Kimono!




特に、女性の着物。呉服屋さんで高々な着物を買わせたか、着付け室では色々な細かなルールを教えられたか、教えられたとおりしか正しくないと思いがちかな。私は貴方より知っているか、私の方が正しいかと、思いたい、伝えたいのでしょうか。女の人はよく女の人のことを馬鹿にすると、(AFは)気がする。道で着物を他人で直されたことがある?ならば、貴方は女性でしょう。男の人はそんな経験はないでしょう。「わぁ〜 結婚式で、小紋をお召しになした、面白いですもの」などのようなことと、言われたくない、恥ずかしい気持ちをさせられたくない、馬鹿にされたくない気持ちは分かりやすいかな。だからこそ、着物を怖がるのではないか。



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auberginefleur at 03:20|PermalinkComments(0)Kimono: Terms & Info | 着物のつれづれ