Navy yukata with hibiscus blossom


This vintage yukata from Yamatoku is very practical and wearable. This is one of my new yukatas – navy cotton with hibiscus blossom (at least, I think it’s hibiscus – it might be pawlonia).The description lists it simply as ‘hana’ – flower. It’s from Yamatoku, but I’m not sure how old it is – probably fairly modern (1960s-1990s?). Yamatoku no… Read more »

Blue Sha with yabane


It’s 30 degrees in France today and all day I’ve been wearing my new blue Sha kimono with white yabane. This kimono cost only 99 cents on Ebay – I was the only bidder – and was described as ‘mixed fabric’. The yabane pattern is a stylised arrow fletch and is one of the most ancient patterns seen on kimono. When… Read more »

Falling in love with kimono again


After a long hiatus, I have fallen in love with kimono again. I have been buying kimono again after a long gap, and oh what a joy it is. The main reason has been the recession – for a couple of years, there simply hasn’t been the money to spend on things that I don’t actually need, however beautiful they… Read more »

Orchid Meisen with huge peonies


My first Meisen kimono is in the Taisho Roman style. This was the first Meisen kimono I succeeded in buying, back in 2004, and it took me many bids on different kimono before I was finally successful. This one is from Ichiroya, who no longer lists on Ebay, and cost about $32. That’s on the expensive side for Meisen, but… Read more »

Floral print Rinzu michiyuki


A michiyuki is a double-breasted coat worn over a kimono. Michiyuki means ‘goes over everything’. Since at this time I was aiming in my collection to have an example of every type of kimono, I bought this one, attracted by its busy floral print of stylised chrysanthemums and its gorgeous water-colour dyed lining. However, I wasn’t sure the shape would… Read more »

Pink Rinzu kimono with shibori flowers


This Rinzu kimono has two types of shibori and a background fabric dyed in bokashi technique. I was feeling rather disillusioned by my recent failture with kimono number 5, but my next kimono was a resounding success. This pink Rinzu kimono uses three separate techniques – Bokashi watercolour dyeing to give the background silk a shimmer, plus kanoko shibori and… Read more »

Omeshi scenic townwear kimono


My fifth kimono purchase was this Showa-era townwear with scenic design in Omeshi and urushi. This kimono was my first purchase of a hitoe – an unlined kimono. I bought it because it was Omeshi, and I was keen to see what this fabric was like. In fact I didn’t know at the time, but I already owned an Omeshi… Read more »

Yellow omeshi with urushi roses


This townwear kimono is in Omeshi silk with lame leaves and pink roses in urushi. I bought this ‘townwear’ kimono from Yamatoku. Townwear kimono are assembled from bolt silk, so the design is equal in all areas of the garment rather than being placed at the hem. This makes them inherently less formal than furisode, tomesode and other formal kimono… Read more »

Light green floral houmongi


My third kimono purchase was this light green houmongi decorated in the Yuzen technique. Houmongi – literally ‘visiting dress’ – are the most flamboyant kimono permitted for a married woman. They can also be worn by unmarried women, though most prefer to carry on wearing the longer-sleeved furisode while they still can. However, this houmongi has more rounded sleeves than… Read more »