This is a very special piece. My friend Olga K, an incredibly talented and creative illustrator, decided to draw something inspired by my kimono obsession, but with plenty of room for experimentation and personal expression. I love this piece so much, all the depth and colour of it, and how Olga put her own personal twist on the outfit while still keeping a very clear stylistic connection to traditional kimono and Japanese arts. Every time I look at it, I notice new details that I hadn’t seen previously.
It may not be typical kimono artwork, but I think it’s all the more special because of that.
I paid more for this (in Gaia Online game currency) than I generally would for a commission, but Lutherum‘s style and skill level were absolutely perfect for what I had in mind. He did an incredible job of replicating all the details of the outfit, especially considering how ornate and fussy this particular kimono is. He was also already familiar with proper kimono and kitsuke, so I didn’t have to explain details or anything, which was nice. I also really love how the artist merged his own personal style with a more traditional sumi-e painting style, and sort of desaturated the colours to give the piece a more cohesive feel.
This is a fairly old piece, but I still love it to bits. It’s got a really pretty ethereal anime feel, which is in rather stark contrast to how rumpled I looked when I actually wore this outfit. Thank goodness for artistic liberties, right?
The artist was very pleasant to and worked with me to ensure I’d be happy with the final product, and I really am. To see a larger version, you can either click the image or visit the artist on her DeviantArt page.
This piece was actually done for a contest on Gaia, and it was definitely one of the most amazing entries I received. As you may know, this particular furisode is incredibly special to me so of course I’m going to be biased when it comes to artwork of it. But look at the sheer amount of detail in this piece. The artist, Elsa Lee, put in a painstaking amount of work to faithfully reproduce the pattern on the kimono. What’s more, can you believe she did it with a mouse?! My hand hurts just thinking about it.
If you want to see the incredibly high-resolution version of this (and believe me, you do!), you can check it out on Elsa’s DeviantArt account
Many of my beloved friends and family members appreciate and encourage my kimono addiction, but when it comes to giving me gifts they openly admit they’re not comfortable buying kimono for me – either they’re unsure of where to start, they’re not familiar with sizing structures, or are just not familiar enough with my tastes or the specifics of what I want/need. This has led to a wonderful trend of people giving me gifts of artwork that are related, either directly or indirectly, to my passion for Japanese aesthetics.
I love all these pieces, and while I can’t really carry them around outside to share with the world like I do when I wear kimono out, I realized there’s nothing stopping me from sharing them with my wonderful readers who would probably appreciate them as much as I do.
This one is a gorgeous kakemono or kakejiku, a painted wall-scroll attached to a fabric backing, usually for hanging in an alcove in a traditional Japanese room. It was a gift from a dear family friend – I’m not entirely sure where he got it, I think it was found in a box while he was cleaning out his mother’s house. Wherever it’s from, it’s really lovely. The painting itself is a cascade of pink flowers and a tiny stylized butterfly. I often find depictions of butterflies a bit twee and frilly in Japanese art, but this one is sort of geometric and absolutely original, and fits perfectly with the stylized flowers.
I’m not sure if the painting itself is Japanese or Chinese in origin (a lot of these are also made for the Chinese export industry), but here is a close-up of the calligraphy on it – if anyone has any ideas what it might say I’d love to know.
I hope you enjoyed this odd little venture outside the specific realm of kimono, because there will be at least a few more of these to come in the near future!