6/05/2011

Kimono Workshop for Satsukikai

My husband graduated from University of Tokyo. So, I had an opportunity to have a kimono workshop for Satsukikai in NY, the lady’s reunion organized by alumna of University of Tokyo, as some of them kindly invited me.

First, I talked about the variety of kimonos at the workshop. My students on the kimono beginners’ class often ask me how to distinguish various kinds of kimonos and to understand dress code of the kimono. Actually, you may see variety of kimonos and obis on my company’s website “Kimono Rental Sample Images”. I explained the formal kimono for married women, called Tomesode and the semi-formal kimono, called Houmongi or Tsukesage. I advised what situation each kimono is worn in.

Then, I talked about Japanese traditional color definition: Kasane no Irome, which is originally defined as the color gradation of twelve-layered kimono (Jyunihitoe). I have already described it on my previous article “Kimono Demonstration at Van Gogh Museum”. As you know, kimono and obi are made by many kinds of fabrics, such as silk, cotton, wool, and so on. Furthermore, techniques of producing these fabrics are variable. Some of them are yarn-dyed (woven after dyed) and the others are piece-dyed (dyed after woven). Of course, they have variety of colors. So, I talked about how to select the material and color of the fabrics when we wear kimono. It is well known that we basically coordinate yarn-dyed kimono with piece-dyed obi, or piece-dyed kimono with yarn-dyed obi, but it actually depends. I think we need to try actual combination of kimono and obi, when we determine their best combination. I brought some of the kimonos and obis to the workshop and let the attendee to try various combinations. The attendee seemed to be able to understand the basics of the kimono coordination through this experience.

Finally, the attendee experienced wearing the kimono. It is important to wear the kimono correctly, but I think it is also important and required to have basic knowledge of the combination of the kimono and obi for selecting an appropriate combination depending on time, location and occasion.
One of the attendee who had learned how to wear kimono told me, “I am happy to learn not only how to wear kimono, but also the knowledge of kimono through this workshop.” I was happy to hear that.

I thought I told them too many things, but it is my pleasure if my workshop will be of any help for them. And I hope this workshop will trigger them to wear kimono.
I give thanks to all the attendee for join my workshop.

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