August 2007

August 31, 2007

Kimtaku's Wife in Daihatsu Car CM

Kimura Takuya has been married for some time now and has two daughters. His wife, actress Kudo Shizuka, was appearing in Daihatsu car CM's for a couple of years. They had a rather charming story of a mother and her son. The Daihatsu CM's have been removed fro YouTube, but Kimtaku's wedding announcement still stands.

Kudo Shizuka

auberginefleur at 17:49|PermalinkComments(0) Japanese CMs & Advertising 

August 30, 2007

Studying at Home (2007.08.30)


auberginefleur at 18:52|PermalinkComments(0) Cell Mail Blurbs 

August 28, 2007

Edward Seidensticker Died at 86 on Sunday

Edward Seidensticker

'Genji' translator Seidensticker dies

Edward G. Seidensticker, renowned American translator of Japanese literature, including a 1975 rendering of "The Tale of Genji," died Sunday in a Tokyo hospital, sources close to Seidensticker said. He was 86.

Seidensticker had been in a coma since fracturing his skull in a fall four months ago. Though a private funeral is planned according to his wishes, a public farewell gathering will reportedly be held later in the year....

...Seidensticker spent half of the year in Tokyo and the other half in Hawaii for many years, but decided to live in Japan permanently last spring, friends said.

Richie, who called "The Tale of Genji" Seidensticker's best work, said the translation owes its beauty to Seidensticker's phenomenal command of English.

"He was reading Jane Austen all the time during the Lady Murasaki (translation). And there was some sort of magical element that the two have sort of come together in that translation," he said. "It's the only translation of 'Genji' that I know of that is imbued with this kind of love, this kind of delicacy." (Japan Times; Story by SETSUKO KAMIYA)

Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2007

auberginefleur at 16:40|PermalinkComments(0) Japan News Briefs 

Hamamatsucho Stn Pissing Boy 2007.08.28



auberginefleur at 10:58|PermalinkComments(0) Hamamatsucho Boy Fountain | Cell Mail Blurbs

August 26, 2007

Recent News in Japan 2007.08.26

Sayoko Yamaguchi

Japan's first supermodel Sayoko Yamaguchi dies at 57
Ex-supermodel Sayoko Yamaguchi died from acute pneumonia earlier this month, it was learned on Monday. Yamaguchi was 57 when she died on Aug. 14.

Born in Yokohama, Yamaguchi appeared at Paris Fashion Week for the first time in 1972. She went on to model for major designers such as Kenzo Takada, Issei Miyake and Kansai Yamamoto.

Newsweek magazine named Yamaguchi as one of the top six models in the world in 1977, and she received a special prize at the Mainichi Fashion Awards in 1984. (Mainichi)

August 20, 2007


Japan Sumo Association to consider letting Asashoryu return to Mongolia for rest

The Japan Sumo Association is set to discuss allowing sumo Yokozuna Asashoryu to return to his home country of Mongolia to recuperate from stress following his suspension, it has emerged....

...The Japan Sumo Association suspended Asashoryu for two sumo tournaments after it was learned he was playing soccer in Mongolia while supposedly recovering from an injury. (Mainichi)

August 20, 2007

Yokozuna Asashoryu suspended for playing soccer

The Japan Sumo Association (JSA) on Wednesday suspended Yokozuna Asashoryu for two upcoming tournaments after he played in a charity soccer game in Mongolia despite having sat out a regional sumo tour in Japan after claiming to be injured.

The JSA also cut the salaries of Asashoryu and Takasago, his stablemaster, by 30 percent for four months.

After winning the Nagoya tournament, Asashoryu told the JSA on July 25 that he would not take part in the summer sumo tour, submitting a doctor's certificate that said his injuries, including a fractured lower back and a damaged ligament, needed some six weeks to heal. (Mainichi)

August 1, 2007

Taiwanese Jet

Taiwanese jet explodes into flames at Okinawa airport, no passengers hurt

A China Airlines jet exploded into flames at an airport in Okinawa after arriving from Taiwan on Monday, but all 165 people aboard escaped alive, officials said. Police said terrorism was not suspected....

...China Airlines spokesman Sun Hung-wen told reporters in Taipei the aircraft skidded on the tarmac on its way from the runway to the gate after landing, starting a fire that prompted the emergency evacuation. The eight-member crew also safely left the plane, Sun said.

(AP via Mainichi)

August 20, 2007

Shiroi Koibito Cookies

Hokkaido confectionery maker falsifies expiry dates of chocolates

A local confectionery maker has falsified the expiry dates of its chocolates by one month, company officials said.

Moreover, the company, Sapporo-based Ishiya Co., has acknowledged that it shipped some cakes after finding they were contaminated with staphylococcus aureus, which causes food poisoning....

...Ishiya repackaged 4,328 chocolates produced in commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the sale of its Shiroi Koibito (white lover) chocolates after they were returned by retailers, and shipped them again after extending their expiry dates by one month. (Mainichi)

August 15, 2007

Asakusa Samba Festival

Sizzling samba heats up Tokyo

Hundreds of thousands lined the streets of Tokyo's Asakusa district Saturday for the annual samba carnival.

The 27th Asakusa Carnival was blessed with fine weather, though the temperature reached a stifling 32.9 degrees and there were some reports of heatstroke.

This year, about 4,500 people made up the 20 teams that took part in the parade, which ran for about 800 meters through Kaminori Dori, the road running through heart of the district popular with tourists.

The parade is the main event of the Asakusa Samba Carnival, which also included such events as a special samba show and the chance to take photos with Brazilian samba dancers.

The Asakusa Samba Carnival, held annually on the last Saturday in August, has a history dating back to 1981. (Mainichi: Story by Ryann Connell)

August 25, 2007

Nakai Masahiro

Kumi Koda & Masahiro Nakai getting intimate while SMAP and Avex just flirt

News that Masahiro Nakai is dating pop queen Kumi Koda has also lifted the lid on speculation that the front man of the "fast-approaching-middle-age" boy band SMAP may be looking at some major changes, according to Sunday Mainichi (9/2).

Nakai, 35, has been SMAP's front man since it first burst onto Japan's showbiz scene in the early '90s. But the band is now facing a crisis, as its record label throughout that time, Victor Entertainment, is about to be swallowed up by parent company Victor Japan due to of cash flow problems....

...SMAP's members are definitely gazing in the direction of Avex. Whispers are floating about that Takuya Kimura, the band's biggest name, is poised to sign up as the star of a movie to celebrate Avex's 20th anniversary next year. And, of course, there's the Nakai link to Koda, a performer closely associated with the Avex label. (Mainichi: Story by Ryann Connell)

August 24, 2007

auberginefleur at 15:46|PermalinkComments(0) Japan News Briefs 

August 21, 2007

Hamamatsucho Stn. Statue (Aug)


auberginefleur at 11:41|PermalinkComments(0) Hamamatsucho Boy Fountain | Cell Mail Blurbs

August 18, 2007

Boating in Yukata on Tokyo Bay (8.17)

* click images to enlarge

Boarding in the Sunset

Friday night, the young'ins from the Buddhist Research Center where I work and our friends escaped from the heat by renting a traditional flat-bed boat, called yakatabune, to tour Tokyo Bay.

We met at the pier on an estuary, but the waters were too high to dock the boat there for boarding, so we had to walk another 15 minutes to board at the edge of the bay. While waiting to board, there was a gorgeous sunset in the sky. My friend Tanaka-san can just barely be seen in her red and white linen yukata. She bought the yukata last year, when we visited Kyoto together for the Gion Festival in July. I was terribly disappointed we couldn’t make it this year because of my teaching schedule, so she organized this boating excursion for all of us. Thank you, Tanaka-san!

Partying inside the Boat

Once on the boat, we ate and drank and goofed off for two hours, the length of the tour. The food and drink was supplied as part of the tour, in Japan every event must include a gourmet experience, in this case, all you could drink, with sashimi and tempura and other delicacies. Did I take a picture of the food? No. What’s wrong with me. I must not be as indoctrinated into Japanese culture as I think I am. The young’ins didn’t take food pictures either, maybe it’s a generational thing in Japan. Music was supplied by Gunjima-san who brought his guitar and another guy who brought his harmonica and they serenaded us with jazz and blues. You couldn’t hardly beat that for atmosphere. Oh, the purple blurs, people are waving their round uchiwa fans, supplied by the tour. You can also see the waters and a night shot of Tokyo outside the windows.

Partying on the Roof

Intermittently we went up on the roof, or hung out the window, to enjoy the breeze and the view of Tokyo from offshore. It was also fun to watch the other boats floating around us. We saw some people on other roofs, but no one else was hanging out the windows like us. They were probably too busy eating and singing karaoke, the TV-like thing seen in the picture above. It didn’t slow us down any, we brought our beer up to the roof and ate hanging out the windows. I am sure the gulls appreciated our accidental droppings of food, probably why they followed the boats. Interesting, Japanese gulls make meowing like calls, or maybe that is just how they plead for food.

Tanaka-san Leaning Out

I wish more of the women came out in yukatas, but it was a pain to drag everything to work and then change there after five. Me and Tanaka-san were the only ones to do so, Ominami-san had promised to wear her yukata too, but gave up on dragging it to work. The guys of course, need only to throw on their yukatas over their underwear, so it is a lot less trouble for them to dress. Also, almost all the members of this group (including the women) are ordained Buddhist ministers, so they know how to dress in Buddhist robes, and next to that yukata is easy. No excuses really, but it was a hot and humid day for a yukata. Anyhow, I captured Tanaka-san leaning out the window in a pensive feminine pose in her yukata.

Me in the Dark

Because it was so awful hot, I wore a white koubai yukata, that looks cool, but really isn’t much more so than a plain cotton yukata. It was a cheapy, so I braved wearing white color around food, and wouldn’t you know it, almost immediately dipped the sleeve in soy sauce. Everyone freaked out but me, but I took their advice and rinsed it with water in the small kitchen sink on board, and the soy sauce came right out. Rinsing soy sauce with water immediately seems to be key, once it dries you’re likely to be stuck with a permanent stain. Anyhow, the yukata had salmon-colored gold fish and blue water ripples on the white ground, and I paired it with a light-blue hemp obi tied in a kai-no-kuchi bow. I started with my curly hair nicely done up, but with the breeze and the humidity it was soon a halo of frizz. And no, you cannot enlarge this picture. It is embarrassing enough as it is. There is a nice view behind me though.

White Koubai Yukata with Goldfish and Water Ripples

The fun was over all too soon though, and now my yukata is hanging in my room, waiting to air out before being put away. At the end of the summer season, I will take it to a kimono shop to be cleaned before storing it for winter.

auberginefleur at 01:06|PermalinkComments(2) Flowers & Festivals | Kimono: My Collection Etc.

August 15, 2007

Tokyo Tower from Restaurant at Hamamatsucho Stn.

* click image to enlarge


(Tokyo Tower & Zojoji live, sort off)

I thought it would be fun to add twitter to my site and add little daily comments from my cellphone when I got bored. However, I can't figure out how to update twitter from my Japanese cellphone. Twitter only gives the text message number, called C-mail in Japanese, and AU phones can only C-mail to fellow AU phones, but can do regular email to anything. And I bet twitter can't do photos either, so I decided to add Moblog, Livedoor's Mobile (phone)-Blogging, to my site instead. Occasionally when I think of it, I will take a photo with my cellphone and it will be added to the top of the side-bar to the right, right under my avatar. Then time allowing, at some point, I may add more information from my computer and post it as a blog entry like this one.

Anyhow, there was an event at the Buddhist Research Center where I work for one of the esteemed elderly members and we had a fancy Chinese dinner at the World Trade Center building near Hamamatsucho station in Tokyo.

I didn't think to bring my camera, so this is a photo from my cellphone. There is a large green area in front of Tokyo Tower, which is part of the Shiba Koen park. The temple Zojoji can be seen in the middle of the green area, slightly behind it to the left, but still in the green, are two horizontal white lines and that is where the Buddhist Research Center is. To the right of the temple is the old Prince Hotel and the skyscraper to the left is the new Prince Hotel building. Isn't it ugly? It once was a golf course, but a couple of years ago, it was replaced by this new monstrosity. Behind and to the left is Ropongi Hills, the same building my avatar is often walking in front of. The bizarre lights I believe are a reflection of the chandelier in the glass.

auberginefleur at 15:15|PermalinkComments(0) Cell Mail Blurbs | Zojoji in Tokyo

August 13, 2007

Yunishigawa Onsen & Nikko: Part I

* Click images to enlarge


To escape the heat of Tokyo, I went with friends to the Yunishigawa Onsen hotsprings up in the mountains near Nikko in Tochigi prefecture. We left by car at 1:00 AM Friday night to avoid the rush of exodus from Tokyo, when all of Japan returns home from the city to visit family and deceased relatives at the time of Obon. Nearing our destination, we stopped to watch the sun rise over the mountains.


Since we had a lot of time on our hands, we toured around visiting various sites. One place we stopped at was Chuzenji, near Nikko, supposedly founded in 788. It has a hall dedicated to the Thousand-Arm Kannon, a hall for Aizen Myōō, and a hall for the Five Great Mantra Kings. It is also the 18th stop on the 33-site Kannon pilgrimage of the east. However, it being extremely early in the morning, we could not enter. Returning from the mountain top where the temple was, down the long winding road, we saw several monkeys with their newborn, but I was not able to get a good picture, partly because you couldn’t really stop your car in the middle of the curvy road without worrying about being rear-ended and also I was afraid to get out of the car anyway, since the monkeys are known to attack people for food, but mostly I was lazy, and sleepy.

Torii Gate to Toshogu Shrine

Next we went to Nikko and wandered around the grounds until the temple opened at 8:30. It was great with almost no people there and even when it did open, it was awhile before the crowds gathered enough to be a problem. I learned a good lesson, do famous sites out of season and very early in the morning.

Five Story Pagoda

Anyway, for those of you who might not know, Nikko refers to a huge area, but when most people say Nikko, they are really referring to the Tōshōgū (東照宮) shrine dedicated to the first Tokugawa Shogun, Ieyasu, who is buried there. The shrine reached its present glorious state under the direction of the third shogun, Iemitsu, as a way to aggrandize the Tokugawa shogunal rule.

Only the Tokugawa Shoguns could have afforded the flamboyant taste of the shrine structures, decorated as they are in brilliant colors and gold leaf. Gaudy anywhere else, they are nicely set off by the deep green of the mountain cedars, a brilliant jewel in an ocean of forest serenity.

Twin Trunk Cedar

Shintō, literally “The way of the gods,” is term for the indigenous belief system of Japan based on animistic beliefs in spirits (kami) inhabiting natural phenomenon and the deification of powerful personalities. The Tōshōgū exhibits both these traits as it is dedicated to the shogun Ieyasu, located in a sacred mountainous area, with sanctified natural features. Inside the compound is a twin-trunk cedar of two married nature spirits. You can tell it is sanctified by the rope with pure white streamers tied around its trunks. You can pray to these spirits in hopes of a happy marriage.

The Tōshōgū, although a Shintō shrine, also has a temple hall within its grounds. In Japan, Shintō and Buddhism were worshipped together until the Meiji restoration (1868), when the two were forcefully separated, and many temples destroyed with their lands and wealth confiscated by the founders of the new regime. Nikko managed to escape this tragedy and its main hall is dedicated to the Buddhist avatar of Ieyasu, which is the Tōshō Gongen deity, but pictures were not allowed inside the building.

The Three Monkeys

At Nikko it is de rigueur to take pictures of the two carvings, the “hear to evil, see no evil, speak no evil” monkeys and the sleeping cat, so here they are.

Napping Cat

Tomb of Ieyasu

Back behind all the fancy structures is the tomb of Ieyasu. Along the approach to it is a lane lined with stone lanterns donated by the feudal lords.

Lane of Stone Lanterns

Beside the Tōshōgū proper is the Rinnōji temple. Whereas the main hall of the Tōshōgū is a Buddhist hall dedicated to Ieyasu as the Shintō avatar Tōshō Gongen with the attendant deities representing the twelve animals of the zodiac calendar, the main hall of Rinnōji has the Buddhist avatars of the Tōshōgū surrounded by Buddhist deities that are considered the equivalent of the twelve zodiac gods. For example, I believe Maitreya (J. Miroku) represents the year of the rabbit. Confused yet? Anyway, the three deities installed in the Sanbutsudo main hall of Rinnōji are Amida flanked by the Thousand-Arm kannon and the Horse-Headed Kannon.


Across from the Rinnōji is the Nikkō Tōshōgū Museum of Art, most impressive for its small but lovely Japanese strolling garden at back that has a three-mat tea house.


As we left a dragonfly alighted to say goodbye.

Toshogu Homepage:

Rinnōji Homepage:

Nikko Tourist Organization Homepage (in Japanese):

Places to Stay (in Japanese):

auberginefleur at 15:19|PermalinkComments(4) Flowers & Festivals 

August 10, 2007

I Just Love Being Complimented: 3-Q Grand Stream Dreams

Grand Stream Dreams

Basically, I write about what interests me, or something I looked up somewhere for myself and wanted to save it before I forgot, or to have somewhere to have links and subjects together so I can get to it on any computer, or cell phone for that matter. You can always tell when I am about to do a major museum tour because I update the exhibitions so they are on the top of my blog and immediately accessible on my cellphone.

I am sure everyone has figured out by now that my major interests are Japanese art, kimono and yukata, places they can be worn (i.e. matsuri and hanabi), Japanese plants and flowers, and their literary references (waka poems). Oh, and Japanese TV dramas, but I haven't seen anything I liked since Haikei, Chichi Ue-sama (Dear Father) that takes place in Kagurazaka. Even Yonekura Ryoko's Kata-goshi no Koibito failed to keep my interest this season.

To keep ya'all coming back to my site, I do try to figure out among the parameters above, what might be of interest to my visitors. For instance, lately I have been trying to include some information on men's kimono and yukata because there does seem to be some who are looking for information, and certainly it is not readily available in English. I do recommend The Book of Kimono, by Norio Yamanaka which has a section on men's kimono.

Anyway, the author of Grand Stream Dreams complimented by blog and I am so thrilled I will add it here.

Kimonos, Sakura, and Japanese Exhibitions

"One website where I seem to get a lot of cultural education and perspective from is the beautifully designed and maintained 今古ジャパン - Japan Now & Then blog. I've never met or contacted abuerginefluer who comes up with all this wonderful content. But she has an eye and sensitivity for the fusion of old and new Japan that I find is one with few peers...


Lavie and Alvis have always wanted to have kimonos. I'm not sure where they would go in them. It doesn't seem right to go to all the trouble to get nice kimonos and just stay in the house, but as good as our local Japanese restaurant is, I've yet to see anyone (local or otherwise) show up there in one...not even the Japanese owners....

...Aoi Sakuraba (who appears in a particularly favorite manga series of Lavie's, Ai Yori Aoshi) almost always wears a traditional kimono and has taught us that it is a complicated garment to wear properly. However, we really didn't have a true understanding of just how complicated it was until reading a recent series of abuerginefluer's posts.

KIMONO BASICS: From Top to Bottom

KIMONO BASICS: The Finished Look

Men's Kimono


Seems like the men get of way easier than the ladies...although something about that arrangement doesn't seem to surprise me.

If you have enjoyed these, check out all of abuerginefluer's kimono related posts.

Take a moment to follow some of the links to the Japanese kimono dealers to get a real treat with the fabric patterns and designs. Even if you can't read a single character of Japanese, it is clear to see they are works of art."

3-Q (Thank You) Grand Stream Dreams

BTW, it really isn't all that complicated, it just seems so until you get used to it and maybe my explanations aren't so hot. But, imagine trying to explain Western garments to someone who had no experience. What we take for granted seems easy, but if you can dress yourself with any sense of aplomb, you can do it in any culture, or at least Japan.

auberginefleur at 14:26|PermalinkComments(0) Kimono: My Collection Etc. | Tsurezure Misc Notes

August 09, 2007

Wind Up Toys or Bell Crickets: Bugs & Poems

Geisha Interrupted

Re: Lea's Blog wind-up toys on crack at Geisha Interrupted

"As they always do this time of year, hoards of these bugs emerge from underground to fly about the city, scream bloody hell, and then die."

Certainly, cicadas (J. semi) are noisy critters and ugly to boot.

"On a practical level, I sometimes wonder what all the haiku masters saw in these insects anyway. Like, how could Basho could even concentrate on the ephemeral nature of existence, with all that screeching going on?"

I suspect they are not entirely a proper subject for classical 31 syllable waka poetry, but it was characteristic of Basho to take common, inelegant themes as subjects for his haiku poems.

But then, there is the following poem on cicada and autumn by Minamoto no Sanetomo (1192-1219):

The blowing winds
They may be cool, but
Alone in the mountains
A cicada cries
Has autumn come?


fuku kaze wa
suzushiku mo aru ka
yama no semi nakite
aki wa ki ni keri

It is not clear who is alone, the poet or the cicada. Has autumn come because the poet has been left alone, or because all the cicadas but one has died signaling the end of summer? I imagine a solitary cicada in the mountains would be a lonely eerie sound indeed.

Though the cicadas are loud and screechy, the bell-cricket (J: suzumushi) has a lovely ringing voice. There is a famous waka poem on the bell-cricket in the early 11th century novel the Tale of Genji by Lady Murasaki Shikibu, in the chapter, yep, "The Bell Cricket." Since I am too lazy to translate it myself, I will use Royall Tyler's from page 707.

I have long since learned how very cruel a time autumn often brings, yet I would not wish to lose the bell cricket's lovely song.


ohakata no
aki wo bōshi to
shiri ni shi wo
furi sute gataki
suzumushi no koe

It is very poignant if you know that Genji’s young wife, the Third Princess (the bell-cricket of the poem), has gotten herself pregnant by another man, who starves himself to death due to the pangs of love, and fear of Genji’s reprisal. Basically the man, Kashiwagi, just destroyed his career by having an affair with the wife of the most powerful man in the realm. The Third Princess on her part takes religious vows much to Genji’s chagrin. Thus she managed to pay penance for her misdemeanor and embarrass Genji, who certainly contributed to the problem by taking a second wife so late in life and then neglecting her by spending most of his time with his main wife, Murasaki, at his other home.

auberginefleur at 12:40|PermalinkComments(0) Flowers & Festivals 

August 05, 2007

How to Wear Yukata I: What You Need


1) One-Piece Hada-Juban for Yukata

This is worn over your underwear to prevent the yukata from sticking to your skin, and though I went years without bothering to wear one, it is much cooler if you do. The best is a 100% percent cotton or linen full-body shift. Avoid ones with a polyester skirt. Sales assistants will try to talk you into a large size if you are a gaijin to move the merchandise, but unless you are large, get the medium because the extra material of the skirt will make it hard to walk because it tangles around your legs. Appropriate underwear is a sports bra and panties for a woman and V-neck T-shirt and boxers for a man; men do not need a hada-juban.


2) Yukata

That goes without saying, but you put this on over the hada-juban. Do make sure you wash your hands before dressing, because make-up, hairspray, and other soil will stain the yukata. Hold out the sides of the yukata as you face the mirror. Line the verical back seam with your back-bone to center the yukata. Raise it off the floor so the hem is just barely above your ankle bone. The lower the hem, the more elegant; the higher the hem, the easier to walk. Close your yukata left over right, in reverse of the standard Western custom. Make sure the innner left hem does not show. Tie shut with a Koshi-himo cord at your waist.


3) Koshi-himo cord

These cords are used to tie shut the yukata and also if you need to hold something in place while you adjust your yukata or obi. Technically, you only need one for a yukata, but I would recommend buying at least a pair, if not two pairs. They come in very handy. You can keep an extra in your sleeve in case of emergency when you are out and about. The matching belts that come with inexpensive yukata bought at Asakusa or the airport, are basically koshi-himo's.


4) Date-Jime

This is a thin under-obi used to even out your yukata and fasten it in place for tying your obi proper. You can go without this and just use another koshi-himo instead, but the obi proper will be easier to tie and look smoother if you use a date-jime. Once you have fitted on your yukata to the proper length and tied it shut with the koshi-himo, stick your arms in the hole under the sleeves and push out the extra material to fold over the koshi-himo. Try to make an even hem-line at the waist. Now is the time to pull down the collar in back so it is not flush against your neck and make sure your yukata is closed properly at the breast. For first timers, I recommend you now tie your yukata shut with another koshi-himo just under your rib-cage and do any final neccessary straightening out. Otherwise, you can go directly to the next step of tying on the date-jime. Hold the date-jime so the center fold is aligned with your belly-button. Cross the two ends in the back and fold one side down so it folds smooth. Then pull the ends to the front and tie the date-jime in a bow in front, staighten out the bow, and then tuck the bow into the date-jime. Men do not need a date-jime.

Yukata Obi

5) Yukata Obi

The Obi for a yukata is half the width and also shorter than a kimono obi. It is often also called a han-haba obi or a ko-fukuro obi. There are basically no rules about matching a yukata obi with a yukata, so choose whatever one you like. The basic strategy is either to go with the same color scheme or choose a color in direct contrast. Unlike Western fashion sense, you can put different shades of the same color together with impunity. If you have a fancy koubai or ro-gauze weave yukata, you can dress it up by wearing a Nagoya obi, but then you start to get into the rules of proper kimono attire.


6) Obi-ita

The obi-ita is not strictly required to wear with a yukata, but it keeps the front of the obi from wrinkling. It is placed between the two layers of the obi at the front. There are types that tie on, so you wear wear it over a koshi-himo in place of a date-obi. Men do not need a obi-ita.


7) Geta

Geta are the wooden sandals worn with yukata. Men can wear geta or the flat straw sandal called setta.

Enjoy Your Matsuri, Hanabi, or Whatever !


Pink New Blinky"Wearing Kimono" by Aoyama Kimono Gakuen (in English)

How to Wear Yukata and Obi (in English)

Japan Lifestyle: How to Wear Yukata (in English)

How to Tie a Hanhaba Obi (in English)

About Yukata (in English)

How to Tie an Obi for Ladies

How to Wear a Yukata and Obi (in Japanese)

Links on How to Wear a Nagajuban that Show How to Tie a Date-obi:

* How to Dress in a Nagajuban:

* Streamline Video:


How to Wear a men's Yukata (in Japanese)

How to Tie a Men's Obi: Clamshell (in Japanese)

Men's Yukata Accessories at Marutomo

How to Fold Up your Yukata Afterwards
(Of course you could just take it to a Japanese dry cleaners and have them do it)

auberginefleur at 15:57|PermalinkComments(1) Kimono: Terms & Info | Yukata & Kimono (Usumono)

August 04, 2007

Summer Exhibitions in Tokyo--Aubergine's Picks

Kotohiragu Shrine Shoin Paintings


* Mural Art of Kotohira-gu Shrine: Okyo, Jakuchu, Gantai, 7/7-9/9, 2007

Ayakashi Ghosts & Specters


* Ayakashi: Specters, Ghosts, and Sorcerers in Ukiyo-e, 8/1-8/26, 2007

Exhibition Description (in English)

Topkapi Palace Museum Exhibition


* Persian Art from the Topkapi Palace Museum, 8/1-9/24, 2007
Homepage in Japanese:

TNM Gozan Zen


* Zen Culture of the Kyoto Gozan Temples, 7/31-9/9, 2007

Exhibition Description (in English)

TNM Ukiyo-e & Kimono


* Regular Rotation in the Honkan: Ukiyo-e & Garments-- Summer Theme
Honkan Gallery (in English)


Sumida Fireworks by Boat

UKIYO-e TOKYO 浮世絵美術館 (Formerly Riccar Museum)

* Ukiyo-e Prints of Evening Cool at Sumidagawa, 8/3-8/26, 2007
Access: LaLaport Toyosu

auberginefleur at 13:14|PermalinkComments(0) Exhibitions in Japan 

August 01, 2007

Major Fireworks in Tokyo, August 2007


* Aug. 1, Koto Ward Fireworks
Koto Hanabi Taikai
Time: 19:30〜20:30
Fireworks: 3,700
Location: Arakawa Sunamachi Riverbank Park (Arakawa Sunamachi Suihen Koen)
Minami Sunamachi stn. on the Tozai subway (15 min. walk)
Homepage (in Japanese): (scroll down for map in Japanese)

* Aug. 4, Edogawa Fireworks

Edogawa-ku Hanabi Taikai
Time: 7:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Fireworks: 14,000
Location: Shinozaki Park
Access: Shinozaki Stn. on the Toei Shinjuku subway (15-min. walk); Ichikawa Stn. (15-min. walk ) or Koiwa Stn. (25-min. walk), JR Sobu Line
Homepage (in Japanese):

* Aug. 4, Itabashi Fireworks
Itabashi Hanabi Taikai
Time: 7 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.
Fireworks: 11,000
Location: Arakawa riverbank, Itabashi-ku
Access: Nishidai Stn, Hasune Stn, or Takashimadaira Stn on Toei Mita subway (20-min. walk ); Ukima-Funado Stn on JR Saikyo line (20-min. walk )
Homepage (in Japanese):

* Aug. 7, Enoshima Fireworks (Near Kamakura)
Enoshima-Hanabi Taikai
Time: 7:15 p.m. to 8:15 p.m.
Fireworks: 6,000
Location: Nishi-hama Beach, Katase, Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture
Access: Katase-Enoshima Stn. (5 min. walk ); Odakyu Enoshima Line
Enjoy Tokyo Site:

* Aug. 10, Kamakura Fireworks
Kamakura Hanabi Taikai
Time: 19:00〜20:15
Fireworks: 2,900
Location: Yuigahama, Zaimokuza Kaikan
Access: Kamakura stn. on JR Yokotsuka Line (15 min. walk); Yuigahama stn. or Wadatsuka stn. on Enoshima line (5 min. walk)
Homepage (in Japanese):

* Aug. 11, Tokyo Bay Fireworks
Tokyo-wan O-Hanabi Taikai
Time: 7 p.m. to 8:20 p.m.
Fireworks: 12,000
Location: Harumi Pier
Access: Kachidoki Stn, Toei Oedo subway (15-min.); Toyosu Stn or Tsukishima Stn on Yurakucho subway (20-min.); Tsukiji Stn or Higashi-Ginza Stn on Hibiya subway (30-min. walk )
Homepage (in Japanese): 第20回東京湾大華火祭

* Aug. 16, Jingu Gaien Fireworks
Jingu Gaien Hanabi Taikai
Time: 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Fireworks: 10,000
Location: Jingu Kyujo Baseball Stadium in Jingu Gaien (Meiji Shrine Outer Garden), Shibuya-ku
Access: Kokuritsu Kyogijo Stn on Oedo subway; Shinanomachi Stn or Sendagaya Stn on JR Sobu line; Gaien-mae Stn on Ginza subway
Homepage (in Japanese):

* Aug. 18, Tamagawa Fireworks
Setagaya-ku Tamagawa Hanabi Taikai
Time: 19:00
Fireworks: 6,000
Location: Futago Tamagawa Enchi Ball Ground
Access: Futago Tamagawa stn. on Oimachi line; 田園都市線
Homepage (in Japanese):

See also:
Let's Enjoy Tokyo: Tokyo Hanabi 2007 (in Japanese):

Let's Enjoy Tokyo: Hanabi in the Greater Tokyo Area 2007 (in Japanese):

WalkerPlus for Fireworks in other part of Japan (in Japanese)

Another Explosive Summer of Japanese Hanabi at

* The ads below, which Livedoor decided to add and I can't get rid of, are at present, but it seems to keep changing:
1) Yukatas that Become Women in their 30's
2) Kimono Plaza

auberginefleur at 16:40|PermalinkComments(0) Flowers & Festivals