I made an event named as “KIMONO CATWALK”, which consisted of the kimono workshop and the kimono fashion show, at the Museum of World Culture in Gothenburg, Sweden.
At the workshop, I talked about a thousand-year history of kimono using the slide show. After the workshop, I demonstrated Obi tying and had the question and answer session.
As I heard that most of the Swedish people can understand English, I talked in English. But unfortunately, I am not a good English speaker , so a translator, Ms. Tomoko Hansson, helped me during the demonstration of Obi tying and the question and answer session. She translated my Japanese to Swedish.
Ms. Tomoko Hansson had served as an interpreter, when the Japanese emperor and empress came to Sweden. She is a wonderful person and created a graceful atmosphere around us. She supported me from the setup to the end of our event.
This picture was taken during the questions and answer session. We received a variety of questions. I was surprised that the audience was more interested in kimono than I had expected. After the demonstration of Obi tying and the question and answer session, we produced a kimono fashion show as I wore on my previous blog entry. Right after the kimono fashion show, Ms. Hansson told me, “The audience really wanted to know about kimono, so please explain more about kimono which you show today.”
The event advertisement in the local newspaper published my name with big fonts. It seemed that I came to Europe for my promotion, but real purpose of my visit to Europe was not to promote myself, but to spread kimono fashion to the world. I was really happy to know that Ms. Hansson fully understood my thought.
After the questions and answers session, I decided to change the event program. I added a special time to introduce kimonos which we used at the kimono fashion show.
Maybe it is not great, if we just think about the quality of the fashion show, but I believe that this introduction was critical for the event. I asked the models to stay at the stage after the show finished, and explained about the kimono. Then, we had an additional active questions and answer session.
As you see on this picture, I was explaining that kimono expresses their real beauty with lining.
I felt Ms. Hansson passed to the audience not only what I told, but also my strong desire to introduce kimono and kimono fashion to the world.
I sincerely appreciate Ms. Hansson very much for her support.