The Men's Kimono And How To Pull It Off

It is rather unusual to see a man in a kimono. However, men’s kimonos are a thing, and a stylish one

  • The Men
  • The Men
  • The Men
  • The Men

Despite being extremely traditional, kimonos are becoming all the rage. In Japan, a kimono is the most suitable attire for all kinds of formal gatherings. Their beauty also resides in their versatility: with a different sash and different accessories, you can create a multitude of looks out of the same kimono.
Every man can be seen wearing stylish, tailor-made kimonos. Men’s kimonos are made from various types of fabrics, but they can be divided into two main categories: casual kimonos and ceremonial kimonos, which differ by materials, colour and the presence or the absence of a family crest, a haori jacket and hakama trousers.
Casual kimonos can be fastened with a stole or a belt, instead of the traditional obi sash, use a shirt or another type of western undergarment, instead of the nagajuban under-kimono, and be worn with a pair of boots or trainers, instead of zōri sandals.
By contrast, men’s ceremonial kimonos consist in black haori and hakama, bearing the family crest. Weddings and other dignified occasions require men to wear a black haori, bearing the family crest and fastened with an obi, a hakama and tabi or zōri sandals.
Lately, casual kimonos, known as yukata, have become increasingly popular, usually sold or rented out in a set complete with sandals and the other accessories.
Kabuki, bunraku, rakugo and noh theatre, sumo wrestling and other traditional venues
Recently, kabuki and rakugo have been refashioned for contemporary relevance, with classic stories transposed into today’s Japanese, to broaden their appeal. In such venues, it is very common to see an increasing number of members of the audience enrobed in a casual, yet stylish, kimono.
New Year’s Celebrations, Hatsumode and Setsubun
Due to the solemnity of the occasion, it is very important to keep a good posture, and the kimono helps achieve that, by restraining the movements and forcing the wearer to straighten their spine. If you have no particular event on calendar, you can wear your usual clothes. However, visiting a shrine in a kimono will make the experience more special and memorable.
A Friend’s Wedding or A Party
Every time a dinner jacket is mandatory, you can wear a kimono. Of course, kimonos too have their own rules for materials and the use of obi sash.
Visiting Kyoto, Nara, Kamakura and Kanazawa
It is highly recommended to wear a kimono when sightseeing the historic cities. A kimono will make you feel part of the scenery and grant you more worldly benefits, such as discounts at some shops, as well as reduced fee and priority tickets at shrines and temples. It is not necessary to own a kimono. You can always rent it from one of the many shops in Kyoto.
Hanami in Spring, Festivals in Summer, Momiji-gari in Autumn, Christmas in Winter and Other Seasonal Events
Quite a few people choose to attend summer festivals and firework shows in the laid-back attire of a yukata. One may think that the excuse is the hot weather because a yukata is a fresh type of clothing. However, people also love to wear multi-layered kimonos on other occasions, such as cherry blossom viewing in spring (hanami) and leaf viewing in autumn (momiji-gari). Men’s kimonos have different designs for each season, which you may coordinate with the pattern and colours of the sandals, obi and collar.

Author : The Slowear Journal


kimono  | tradition  | Japan  | fashion  | menswear  |

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