There’s nothing cooler than kimono in these high temperatures.
It’s been hot here in France the past couple of weeks and I’m pretty much living in kimono.
Some years ago I bought a cream silk ro kimono that I shortened to make into a nightie. This is a brilliant thing for sleeping in, or, with the addition of a datejime and obi, I can just about get away with it for hanging around the garden.
Other than that, I’m wearing mostly yukata, and so addicted have I been to the comfort of it, that today I actually broke a barrier and was seen out in public in one. I just couldn’t face the thought of wearing western clothing.
To be strictly accurate, I think my kasuri yukata is meant to be a kimono. It was as stiff as a board when it arrived, back in about 2004, and so tiny that I had to take it apart and repiece it using the full width of the selvedge in order to get it to fit. Now it’s one of my favourites.
I wore it out on Wednesday night over a ro yukata used as a juban, and teamed with my yellow yukata obi – a favourite in hot weather, as it’s so thin, and topped with my yellow and black Taisho cotton haori, and I felt as cool as a cucumber.
Today, I wore it as a yukata out to a local park where we were doing some preliminary shooting for a short film we’re making. I initially topped it with a lovely Taisho era haori, but by the time this photo was taken, we’d been walking for an hour in the sun and the haori had long since been removed – you can see its arabesque pattern on the left, slung over my bag.
Unstylish this outfit may be (my new obijime cord was coming undone) but I post it nevertheless to show how easy it is to function in kimono – it is no different from wearing a comfortable dress.
The yellow yukata in this final picture is a modern one and very flimsy and irritating compared with older ones. It also lacks a shoulder lining. It is, however, very thin, so nice for sitting on the patio and working, as we have been doing this past few days. The haori is a Taisho one in rayon, with a lovely fake-shibori lining, which I wore when we had friends over for tea the other day.
Gradually, people are getting used to me and my little ways so I hope gradually to be brave enough to wear kimono more often.