19th Kimono Day – San Francisco Japantown

At long last, we were finally able to attend another kimono day!  San Francisco Japantown’s Kimono Days started shortly before I fell pregnant with Lily and we attended a few. But then with life, work, breastfeeding, etc – we had difficulty attending any more until now.  This time, in addition to Arian, Lily and myself, I had the pleasure of re-introducing kimono to my friend, Rebecca.

I’ve only recently had the pleasure of Rebecca’s friendship, being introduced by our landlord as another Australian who loves Japanese culture.  Upon meeting, we got along quite well, and it wasn’t too difficult to recruit her as a kimono buddy!  When Rebecca was younger, she lived in Japan for a year and her Japanese family dressed her in furisode with full nihongami (traditional hairstyle) for studio photos.  She also had the opportunity to wear yukata during the Summer months.  It has been many years since she wore kimono, but she took to it like a fish to water.

For being the middle of Winter, the day was absolutely gorgeous!  The perfect weather for wearing kimono.  The only problem, however, was poor Lily had a rough time getting to sleep the previous night, finally falling asleep nearly 4 hours past her bedtime, woke up at the crack of dawn on Kimono Day, and didn’t really nap on our drive in – so she had an exceptionally short fuse for the day and we spent a considerable amount of time trying to prevent too many meltdowns and chasing after her (why yes, I CAN run while wearing kimono!).

I also had the pleasure of meeting a number of lovely ladies who know me from the blog!  My regret is with Lily’s behaviour, I was unable to converse in depth or sit down and watch any of the performances. I do apologize to any of my readers I met, and I hope that next Kimono Day I’ll have a better chance for conversation!

Anyhow, enough talk!  Let’s move onto the photos!

Rebecca’s Ensemble
The ensemble I dressed Rebecca in is one I’ve longed to wear for some time.  The kimono is a gorgeous, buttery silk in deep purple with red arabesque and ume scattered  all over.  On top of is is frolicking shishi done in a stipple effect, with hints of greens and yellows.  A traditional motif pairing with shishi is botan (peony), and I had just the right obi!  A gorgeous Spring green chuuya with botan and tsuzumi that contrasted perfectly against the purple of the komon.  I then paired a lovely soft green, embroidered han’eri, lemon yellow shibori obiage and dark purple obijime.  To complete the look, a black haori with a lovely rinzu of faux shibori, sasa and kiri was worn (although, not in these particular photos).

My Ensemble
I chose to wear a gorgeous ume komon that was a gift from my dear friend, Diane.  It’s the perfect season to wear ume – the anticipation of Spring.  Because ume bloom while the snow is still on the ground, I decided to wear a black and white hakata obi, to represent the snow covered earth, and paired it with bright green accessories to allude to fresh shoots emerging.  I then completed the look with a black haori with red kanoko shibori tachibana, another Winter motif.

Arian and Lily
Arian wore his favourite blue tsumugi kimono and haori set, paired with his skull obi and snake skin setta and Lily wore a kanoko shibori furisode with ume.

Some of my favourite photos of the day!

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