Disney Princess Kitsuke Project! Complete!

You guys! It’s done! While part of me is excited to work on other things, I admit that I’ve had so much fun doing these that I am a little bit sad to see it end. I’m thinking of occasionally doing one-off other Disney ladies now and then (Alice, Kida, Esmeralda, Megara, etc). If you would like to see those, please let me know!

This has been a really interesting project for me, working with different styles and trying to make sure the spirit of each Princess comes through without being overly “costumey”. I think I’ve succeed quite well in the end. Seeing them all together like this is very satisfying! It’s also pretty neat to me to see how different the living room looks in different weather/lighting/etc.

For full details of each outfit, as well as my thought processes and any meaning in the textiles or designs, please check out the individual post for each princess.

This has been an amazingly fun project. It encouraged me to think out of the box while still technically adhering to the rules in most cases. It’s been a blast, but I am also happy to be finished. I’ve got a few simpler things in the works – something fun for Halloween and a little surprise for my Facebook followers. However my work schedule is about to get hellish. Not only are the holidays closer than they seem, by the first week of October I will be the only employee in the store, which means I’ll have to be in there all day every day six days a week. I will do my best to keep a semi-regular content schedule, but things will be sparse for a bit. Thanks in advance for understanding! 💖

If you’ve enjoyed this project and would like to see more things like this in the future, or would just like to encourage me in general, please consider dropping a few dollars in my PayPal account or support me on Patreon.

Book Review – Kimono no Tanoshimi ga Hirogaru Obimusubi Arenji Jo

cover着物の楽しみが広がる 帯結びアレンジ帖
(Kimono no Tanoshimi ga Hirogaru Obimusubi Arenji Jō)
by Kururi
Language: Japanese
ISBN: 978-4262160238
Amazon.com Listing

Well, that title’s a mouthful, isn’t it? It essentially translates to Expand your Enjoyment of Kimono; Notes on Obi Musubi Arrangement (thanks to Tamara for the coherent translation).

This book is an incredible resource for anyone looking to improve their personal kimono dressing and styling. It’s entirely in Japanese but the pictures and diagrams are so thorough that it’s a negligible issue. It’s not for formal kitsuke, nothing useful for kurotomesode, furisode, etc, but it’s chock-full of styling suggestions and obi tying alternatives for casual kimono wear. This book is a vital addition for anyone looking to expand their kimono skills and library.

It’s got all sorts of basic resources; a seasonality chart, padding diagrams, coordination examples, and a wide variety of musubi for nagoya and hanhaba obi. The obi variations are very well-organised. The book first shows a “standard” tie that most kimono afficionados are already familiar with (otaiko for nagoya obi, chocho for hanhaba obi), and then shows variations using the same starting-off points. There’s even a few examples of women’s styling using a narrow men’s kaku obi.

 

I’ve scanned a few pages to give you a feel for the book (and how necessary and relevant the text may be), but I urge anyone who collects kimono to pick up a copy. It’s quite new, published in January of 2016, so it’s still quite easy to find online and it’s incredibly affordable for all the information it contains. It’s also small and lightweight, very practical to throw in a bag if you’re travelling.

I would recommend this book for:


-Anyone from beginner to expert
-People looking for interesting variations on traditional kitsuke
-People who wear casual kimono frequently

I would not recommend this book for:


-People looking for more detailed, artistic images of kimono
-People looking for traditional formal (kurotomesode, furisode) kitsuke help

 

This post contains affiliate link(s). If you choose to purchase, I receive a small rebate or commission which goes to the continued maintenance of this site.

Outfit of the Whenever: Sugar & Spice

I have accepted that calling this feature Outfit of the Week is unrealistic. I will try to continue posting at minimum once a month; we’ll see how that goes 😉

I’ve been wanting to do an outfit using a blouse in lieu of juban for quite some time now, but never really found inspiration until now. The other day I found this ruffled, high-necked, almost Victorian-inspired black blouse and everything fell right into place. I went with a very simple colour scheme, just using black and dusty pink. The kimono is an iromuji with a really lush, textured silk weave. The obi is actually my lobster tsuke obi wrapped backwards so it’s just solid black. I realised as I was dressing Tsukiko that it was coming across as a very pretty, demure, sort of outfit so I ramped that up with pearls and an ume kanzashi from GirLinKimono on Etsy used as an obidome. It seemed very fitting for Valentine’s Day.

I love how soft and simple this coordination is, without being remotely boring. I also really like how the blouse-as-undergarment turned out, and I may end up having to try this out on myself sometime in the near future. It seems like it would be easier and more comfortable than worrying about juban and everything.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you all! May it be filled with love and chocolate or whatever else makes you happy.

Ashes to Ashes

When I woke up this morning, my social media feed was full of posts expressing shock and sorrow about the passing of David Bowie. People of all ages and genders came together to lament the loss of someone who seemed above such boring human concerns as dying. I’m still not entirely done processing it.

In order to cope, I decided to dress Tsukiko. Rather than go for a typical mourning ensemble, I tried to capture the spirit of David Bowie at his most memorable. He was known for his theatrical and flamboyant personas, for his transcendence of time, space, sexuality, and gender. He was also an avid fan of Japanese culture, and often had stage outfits and clothing inspired by Japan. I set out to create an outfit that defied categorisation; a vintage woman’s kimono tied male-style with a low and narrow modern obi, a mid-century haori decorated with chrysanthemums – flowers that once signified queerness.

I’m happy how it turned out. It may not obviously scream his name, but I know what inspired it, and that’s enough for me. Farewell, Starman. Several generations of freaks and weirdos mourn today.

 

ziggysm

 

Liz in Bunny Kimono!

I’ve often said that being my friend is dangerous, and coming to visit me generally results in the guest being subjected to kitsuke. I decided to level things up this time, and when I went to Baltimore to visit my friend Elizabeth a few weeks back, I brought a kimono with me. She chose the bunny komon based on the photos of my collection, and I brought a selection of accessories that I thought would coordinate well with it and be easy to tie without too many accessories. We ended up choosing the taupe arabesque hanhaba obi, a hot pink obijime, and spade obidome.

For someone who has never worn kimono before, Liz took to it like a pro! Next time, maybe she’ll come up here to visit me and I’ll put her in something really elaborate.

I have to admit, this kimono fits her much better than it fits me. Oh, to have a shorter wingspan!