Blue and straw stripe Taisho Roman

This 1920s striped kimono is very elegant and subtle.

This new kimono arrived yesterday from a favourite vendor, Kofudo.

In ‘Taisho Roman’ style, it probably dates from the early 1920s, or possibly the early Showa era, but retaining Taisho style.

blue kimono interiorIt has the typical hallmarks of a Taisho piece that I find the most attractive: long sleeves and a whisper-thin scarlet silk doura, and in addition has a beautifully subtle mint-green crepe hakkake – the same fabric is used to line the cuffs.

These incredibly thin linings are a characteristic of kimono from the 1920s to the end of the war and I feel mark the last time that the kimono was worn as everyday clothing. Modern kimono, from – say – the 1960s onwards feel much more like outer or dress-up garments.

blue stripe closeupThe outer fabric of this komon is what I might call tsumugi,or perhaps a chirimen, but however you define it, it’s very textured, with the straw-coloured areas traversed by fine navy stripes and the navy stripes made up of hundreds of tiny beige vertical stripes.

side viewThere’s also an incredibly fine gold thread in there, separating the blue and beige stripes, and the two shades of beigey-straw colour are different thicknesses.

Altogether, a really lovely and subtle kimono whose beauty is only apparent in close-up.

Vintage striped kimono, and those with yabane, tatewaku or cross-hatching, are among my favourite kimono for everyday wear. I wore this one all day yesterday, over a silk satin tunic and it was lovely – light and drapey. A really good three-season komon.

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