Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Kimono for a Day

I am on a new computer!  It is very smooth, quick to respond!  But I'll tell you what I miss about my old one, the assurance that I know what I am doing! ...I still have some getting used to to do.

Last month there was a coming of age day at the beginning of the month.  Now, E is getting ready for next year's, when she takes part in the ceremony.  Many people, we were informed, start in with the kimono rental from September, two years prior to the year, to get the best kimono prints.  I am sure they are either very wealthy or distant relatives of the royal family!  We got started Monday when E made an appointment with a sales lady at a kimono rental place.  (I didn't answer that phone call!)

This is the first kimono she tried on of three.  The reason she is not smiling is because she is a jock at heart, and not really into dress up, but she must feel the need  to comply with society.  I promise it was fun in that we have the same taste in color coordination so that we decided each little piece in agreement, which felt really good!

I digress, to prefix my own personal feelings on the matter of this kimono rental business, that it is simply too costly, making me feel guilty for such decadant excess, especially the way the girls these days 'dress up' the kimonos, running the cost into thousands of dollars for a days rental, waay to much, even if it includes a photo shoot.  (If you are able to put the thing on yourself, no easy feat, you can wear it as much as you like from the period of the photo shoot to the day after the ceremony when it has to be returned)  Probably girls turning of age wore the kimono passed down from generation to generation in the family on this festive day, but due to westernization kimonos are worn less and less enabling the rental company to build up a booming business for this 'once in a life time' event.  Only young girls can wear the furi sode, or longed sleeve kimonos, probably only to 26 years of age or so!


The obis are beautiful!  They clip it up on the neckline to preview it first.  Of coarse it is usually worn around the waist.  E was getting very tired after just one try on which took a full hour because well the sales lady had to try out all the 'options'.  I couldn't believe that strip of cloth, beautiful though it was, would add 13,000 yen to the price! I told E to listen carefully to those numbers, whether it was an option or not.  Being able to communicate in English with her has never been so convenient.  Even though she doesn't say much in English, she CAN understand me.  The black one to the right above was beautiful but the sales people emphasized that she can wear such traditional prints later in life, now is the only time she can wear 'young and cute'!

This is the kimono she chose (above), this is naked compared to the final outcome.

See how they deck it out.  I chose the black one to show you here.
It took six hours from start to finish. We were both worn out, but E was the one who had been through wearing them, I almost wanted to ask her if she was really up to this!!  The actual day will be grueling! Kimomos aren't known for their comfort. But all her friends will be doing it too... 

She is a working girl now, she agreed to pay for most of it herself.  It is the independant thing to do!  She 'held down' the price to just over 200,000, over 2000 dollars, what I would do with 2000 dollars!  It certainly wouldn't involve wearing a kimono!  We also took time to work out payment plan, they have something that with no added interest you can pay six months down the line around bonus time!  That will give her plenty of time to save up for it!

I'll make sure to blog photos of the actual day.  We plan on having a family photo taken probably on the photo shoot day in May, why, we haven't had one of those taken since, well since E's other ceremonial day when she was six...   How many blogs can I get in between now and E's next year coming of age ceremonies? Ha ha, we'll seeGood day all!


  1. Oh, my gosh, she's gorgeous! Which kimono did she end up choosing?

  2. Really nce! I like the black one too... but yeah rather too "adult" I guess....

  3. She's wearing the one it says, um the blue one, the 'naked' one!

  4. Yeah I guess it is her last change to be 'young and cute' Ha Ha!