Traditional Japanese Fashion: Full Breakdown

Shane | May 1, 2019 | 660 | Kimono

Japan is one of the countries that maintain their culture.

No wonder that even now you will easily find people who wear traditional clothing while walking in Japan. Here are some of them:


Until the 1850s, kimonos were the everyday clothing of Japanese society. But since Japan began to open up to the outside world, the army started to adopt Western clothing styles that continue to grow until now. In modern times kimono is better known as formal wear.


Hakama is clothing that is worn outside of a kimono that looks like large fold pants or a skirt depending on the style.

Hakama is traditionally a man’s attire. Formerly the craftsmen, farmers, students, and samurai used hakama with a different style. Today, women are also using hakama. It is usually used for martial arts activities or formal wear.


Obi has an ornate decoration that is wrapped around the waist of a kentia using a kimono. The price is usually as expensive as another layer of kimono.


Yukata are usually famous as clothing that is widely used during the summer, especially when attending hanami events (seeing cherry blossoms) or other festivals. Even though it’s not the same as a kimono, it has a similar feel.


Happi is a cotton vest that looks like a robe that is usually used as a team uniform at a festival. Usually used together with a matching headband.


Furisode is a kimono with very long arms that are usually worn by adult singled women at maturity ceremonies.


Nagarjuna is a rope worn under the kimono. Commonly known as deep kimono.


Tabi is formal socks worn when wearing traditional sandals such as geta, zori, and okobo. Tabi has a unique shape in the form of a toe part that is separated from the other four toes and has a curved shape on the back.


JIkatabi are boots shaped like tabi. Many are used by workers who work a lot outside, such as farmers or construction workers.


Zori is one of the traditional Japanese sandals, which is very formal.


Geta is another type of traditional high slipper and usually works so that the kimono is not exposed to snow, rain, or other impurities.


Okobo is another type of traditional sandal made of box-shaped wood with straps on top. Usually not painted in any color or just lacquered in black.


Hiyoku is a kimono strap worn under the outer kimono strap. Based on history, the number of layers can reach 20 layers for formal events and five layers to keep yourself warm. The kimono layer used to have a specific meaning, but now it has become a lost art.


Kanzashi is a hair ornament used in traditional Japanese hairstyles, one of which is the Maiko hairstyle. Usually has a variety of variations according to the season or type of event to be attended. Based on history, the inside of kanzashi was deliberately made sharp so that it could be used to defend oneself.


Uchikake is a rope used on the outside of a bridal kimono that functions as a coat. Usually red and illustrated by a crane. In Japan, cranes are known as birds that can live to be 1000 years old and are also a symbol of the fortune of marriage. But now brides prefer to use white uchikake.


Fundoshi is a kind of men’s “waist cloth” that has historically been known as men’s underwear. Another history also says that fundoshi is often used as a substitute for shorts by workers and wheelchair drivers. Now fundoshi is usually used by men when attending festivals that require strength and endurance.

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