The kimono really is the comeback kid in the 2016 fashion trends. Imported from Japan, you don’t need to be a geisha to wrap yourself in a kimono: the simplified version can easily be worn nice and loose with jeans and sneakers. But it’s still bursting with tradition, in which the chrysanthemum plays a subtle part.
The traditional Japanese kimono
The kimono has long ceased to be an everyday outfit in Japan and is now mainly a heritage item, but women still wear them for ceremonies and traditional events. For example, you wear a kimono for your graduation, when you get married and during the tea ceremony.
You’re thereby not just wearing the magnificence of a robe, but above all a profusion of symbolism. For example, the colour doesn’t need to be your favourite shade. Red represents happiness and protects children from evil, and is therefore a recurring theme in the fabrics used.
You also see chrysanthemums conspicuously often on traditional kimonos, and not just as a fun decoration. The chrysanthemum symbolises a long and happy life - something you would wish anyone wearing the garment. So if you’re still in two minds about buying the modern version, take a good look at the print. Chrysanthemum present? Check!
Buying a new kimono
Read more about kimonos
- Annie van Assche, Stefano Ember, Fashioning the Kimono. Dress and modernity in early 20th century Japan, Milaan 2005
- Liza Dalby, Kimono. Fashioning Culture, 2001
- Jill Liddell, The story of the Kimono, New York 1989
- Norio Yamanaka, The book of kimono, Tokyo 1982