April 3, 2012

Yukata Workshop & Demo

Lots of Yukata to play with!
I  gave a workshop-demonstration for dressing in yukata over the weekend in Phoenix. It went pretty well! There were a few bugs, such as it could have been longer, but overall it was fun. My friend Murray was generous enough to take some photos and Emma was my model.

 This took place at Fushicho Daiko's dojo, which was an ideal location, since there was lots of room and big mirrors. Here are a few images from the afternoon of girlie fun!
Obi and accessories
Tenugui: the towel for any occasion!

There was some show and tell, and I brought many items so people could tell what the difference was between accessories such as a child's heko obi, a young ladies heko obi and an obiage; different types of juban for kimono and yukata, the differences in size of modern yukata versus vintage yukata, plus kanzashi, tenugui, geta, kinchaku, etc. I wanted to show what items looked like and their real names if they ever wanted to buy their own items online. Participants were also given a handout with glossary, sizing tips for buying yukata, and resources such as videos and where to buy.


I dressed Emma in a lovely indigo and white yukata and a yellow and orange cotton hanhaba obi with a hemp leaf and plum blossom design on it.  This was to show how to tie the basic butterfly obi on someone else. After showing how to tie it on myself, participants practiced on themselves. I had them try different obi so they could see the difference in crispness and drape between lined and unlined silk and cotton. Some were really easy to tie, and some, not so much!
The new red Nagoya obi.

Emma had brought a heavy cotton Nagoya obi and wanted to know how to tie it, so I brought an obi makura, obiage, and obijime so I could demonstrate. She is wearing a yukata but it still coordinated pretty well! The obi had a wonderful modern design with silhouettes of vases on it. Usually you don't wear a Nagoya obi with yukata, but since this one is casual cotton, you might get away with it. It was rather heavy though, so it's probably better suited for a nice komon kimono.

I did caution Emma...since this is her first Nagoya obi, she now has gone "over the line" and must buy a kimono, and even more accessories in order to wear it! Now you know why yukata are called the gateway drug of the kimono world.


  1. Greetings,
    I'm so sorry that I missed your demo. I've recently purchased my first Yukata & could use some support. Will you be holding another session prior to Strolling in Yukata here in Phx?

    Zelda Zunk

  2. Hi Zelda
    I'm sorry you missed it as well! I probably won't be having another unless I have some more interest. The only date I could do it would be Sunday, April 22nd. There is a tiny possibility for The Friday before the yukata strolling or earlier the day of the event. The big obstacle is finding a place to dress people. I could even arrange something just to help people dress. If you have any ideas, let me know!