March 22, 2020

Oh hey everyone
I'm on Instagram in case you would like to follow- @Redhotkimono!
I often post new photos there before I do on my blog...
Yesterday, I was at friend's home and art studios- standing in from of a wonderful metal and glass sculpture!
More posts soon, so check back.

February 2, 2020

Kimono Time! Jan. 2020

Hi everyone.
I've had a chance to wear kimono twice in January- once for the Tucson Japanese Festival volunteer meeting and for the festival itself. I did some serious multi-tasking at the festival- I did a kimono dressing demonstration, played taiko, and helped dress people in yukata in the photo-booth! It was a wonderful event and seems to be growing. Hopefully it will be longer next year.

For the festival volunteer meeting: understated grey kimono with colorful floral vintage Meisen haori and black accessories. This kimono is new and washable poly. I'm also wearing statement jewelry here- a black polka dot  bracelet and big chunky mixed metals ring and silvery earrings. Black and white striped tabi socks and red and black zori complete this casual look.

Hitoe (unlined) kimono with yabane design

Leopard belt as obijime, black and white striped obiage; obi features tachibana design. 

Kimono worn at the Tucson Japanese Festival: ultramarine blue vintage komon kimono with hot pink obi, lime green obiage and colorful haori. The vintage haori has a blue background that almost exactly matches the kimono. The haneri is a floral and geometric print. 

Casually festive for the festival!

Obi features a rose (bara) design. 

The back of the haori- vintage Meisen.

Haori features roses, bush clover, and lily motifs. 
 My friend also volunteered to help out at the photo-booth and she had the most amazing kimono that she purchased in Japan. Check out the obi musubi (knot)!
Cockatiels and houndstooth! 

Super cute tabi and zori!

A mouse obi musubi- for the Year of the Rat!
(My friend is sitting seiza here.)
 More kimono soon.

December 24, 2019

Is This a Kimono?? The Search is on!

A follow-up to my post I did a few years ago, What Not To Wear, I occasionally search for kimono online out of curiosity to see what shows up. 

Try it- type in "Kimono" into you web browser (I'm using Duck Duck Go) and you will be presented with a plethora of kimono- but not all of them are really kimono. Below is an edited screen shot- my monitor is huge, so I have to chop it up a bit to make it fit, but you get the idea.

Some fakes or kimono-style jackets are difficult to spot, but if you click on an image and you end up on TopShop's website where they are selling something like this, then you know it isn't Japanese clothing. Unless you are looking for a cute, long embroidered jacket! 

Enjoy the search.
Arigato and Merry Christmas,

July 31, 2019

Trip to Seattle

Hi everyone!
I just got back from a trip to Seattle! It was a family trip and I didn't wear kimono much, only a yukata at the Seattle Obon at the Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple. It's a wonderful community Obon, small but mighty! It took place in front of the temple, so the street was closed. It's a two-day event, and I went on Sunday. Apparently Sunday has slightly less people (more parking opportunities!) than Saturday. The only downside was it was unexpectedly hot and sunny- 88 degrees F and about 70% humidity! I was very glad I wore a yukata instead of the summer kimono I had considered bringing. I purposely choose the green and white ensemble for the reference to "Emerald City", a popular name for Seattle and it gives a feeling of coolness. At least visually!

I also met another kimono kitsuke enthusiast and we hit it off, even meeting up the next day for kimono shopping and lunch! Luckily, there were some indoor events in the temple gym, so we cooled off in there a bit, but only a bit- no airco and only ceiling fans. Luckily, we had our fans for dancing! I think I wore out my wrist fanning myself! It was a very sweaty day. We did get a little too much sun. Since Obon is a participatory event, I didn't get a ton of photos this time. It's more fun to eat roasted corn, shave ice, and dance!
Butterfly yukata, mesh summer hanhaba dragonfly obi,
green & white obijime, and my little red shibori birdie.
Selfie- before I got too hot. I'm wearing a
 cotton juban top with a han eri (collar) for a crisp look. 

Seattle Matsuri Taiko getting ready to play

A still from our stint in the photo booth!
By this time, I was suffering from the heat. 
Just an FYI- I noticed a trend among a few chic kimono wearers: western sandals or shoes with kimono! I've seen it on Instagram but now I have seen it in person. I wore a pair of Clarks sandals for comfort. 

On this trip, I also went to the Seattle Japanese Garden near the arboretum. If you are in town, this is a must-see. It is stunning. It's been around since 1960 and is a "strolling garden" and has wonderful vistas at every turn. Here are a few views from my trip there.

A pagoda representing the mountain monasteries of Japan.

The tea house.

A ramen cart from 1950- fully restored! 
A few more random photos...there is water and lush green everywhere! Seattle truly is the Emerald City.
Ducks on Lake Washington.

Flowers on the street in downtown Kirkland.
Mt. Baker as seen from an Everett backyard deck.
Deception Pass bridge- from the car!