Breaking the Rules part II - ルールを破る(パート2)

I've written about it, and thought about it, and invited your comments about it and here it is - breaking the rules part II. Lots of fashionistas, when they think about kimono, think about romanticized images like the one above (taken from a U.K. lingerie site). But the true problem in buying a kimono and wearing it like above is the length. Kimono, if you are ever going to wear it in the fashion the Japanese do, needs the extra inches to 'double down' below the obi (sash) in order to look proper.

皆様、お待たせしました。「ルールを破る」で最初紹介したアイディアをまた考えて、皆様からいただいたご意見も読んで、パート2を書いてみました。(UK のランジェリーサイトで見つけた)上のイメージで想像がつくと思いますが、欧米のファショニスタ達が着物を考えると、変にやりすぎてしまう傾向があると思います。着物を写真ようなコンテンポラリースタイルで着る際に問題になってくるのは丈の長さです。日本式に着物を着るなら、帯の下からはみ出す、その余分な丈(おくみ)も必要です。

What started as necessity (kimono were handed-down through the family, so extra length from the tan (or bolt of kimono fabric) was 'rolled up' and saved for future (taller) generations) has become a necessary requirement for the look. So when you want to break the rules, you are restricted by the length of the kimono.


But, it was Saturday night, and I wanted to look that that picture above, so I added a necklace and tried to figure out what to do with all the extra fabric (usually hidden and bound by my obi).


And it didn't matter how many ways I tried, and how high my shoes were, which belt I added, it looked ridiculous! Verdict: you can't wear a kimono both ways. If you want that lingerie-site look, you need to get the kimono shortened. But know, once you shorten it - you won't be able to wear it in the traditional way. Sadly, in this case you can't have your cake and eat it too (but I'm still going to try)

残念ですが、この場合は一つを選ぶしかないですね… まだまだ試行錯誤は続きます!


  1. I'm sure the handing-down-within-family thing also applies, but as I understood it, one main reason women's kimono are long is that historically they were worn dragging on the floor indoors (since traditionally no-one ever wore shoes indoors). If you look at Edo woodblock prints you see that graceful trailing hem; like modern geisha & maiko they would tie up the excess length when going outdoors, but when Western-style buildings became more common they switched to tying it up as a matter of course. That's what I've read, anyways.

  2. Sarcasm San the kimono you see geisha an maiko wearing are a special type of kimono called hikizuri! They are made to trail, but you are right they do tie them up when going out doors!


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