Kimono diary: Cream ro but now needing a haori

21 degrees, with sun and showers, so alternately quite hot and freezing cold – fairly unseasonable for August. Felt like wearing ro today, so put on my cream one with plum blossoms, but then felt in need of an extra layer, so rather than getting undressed again, wore the cream silk haori with mosquito print. I originally bought this haori… Read more »

Black wool ensemble with zigzags

My first ensemble is made from tough wool tsumugi. My first kimono ensemble arrived yesterday – this black wool number from Yamatoku (a spur-of-the-moment 99 cent bid). The kimono is a classically unlined wool kimono, but has quite a high-end, cotton-lined collar with a press-stud (all my other wool kimono have sewn-down collars). The haori is lined with a pretty… Read more »

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. It has the typical hallmarks of a Taisho piece that I find the most attractive: long sleeves and a whisper-thin… Read more »

Cream houmongi with gold embroidery

This houmongi feels as beautiful to wear as I hoped it would. My new houmongi arrived yesterday morning, courtesy of Japanese Antiques. I couldn’t resist trying it on, so I popped it over my home-made juban in white Thai silk, and teamed it with a Showa-era fukuro obi with gold arabesques (with my 5in obi stay tucked inside). The obi-scarf,… Read more »

Black omeshi with red and white oblique stripes

This everyday kimono probably dates from the 1950s or 1960s. A new kimono arrived this week – this townwear in black silk with red and white oblique stripes. Described as ‘blend silk’ fibres by vendor Kyotokiyou, I would describe it as omeshi. It has the tough, dirt-shedding surface of omeshi, along with its considerable weight – it’s 870g, which puts… Read more »

Han-eri

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Han-eri are temporary collars that you sew to your juban (underkimono) to produce a pretty neckline. Having discovered recently that I had some shantung wrapover jackets that I made many years ago, which would pass as a juban if only they had a stiffer collar, I decided to make my own han-eri. I am a squirrel Nutkin and never throw… Read more »

Blue cotton hitoe with stylised flowers

When is a cotton hitoe not a yukata? The answer, really, is when it’s too heavy. The kimono I’m wearing in this picture is a modern kasuri cotton kimono, unlined. I can, and sometimes do, wear it as a yukata but the fabric is quite stiff and thick – though by no means as thick as the old-style handwoven kasuri,… Read more »