The Great Kimono Revival


Designers are reclaiming traditional Japanese kimono to create a new look: Kimono Chic.

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Kimono-clad Geisha clip-clopping through back streets. The classic image of Japan. In Tokyo, however, often the only kimonos you see are in funky used clothing stores.

Now, designers reclaim these to create a new look: Kimono Chic.

wa style fashion
Old to New – kimono silks get a new life

The continuing resurgence of Wa Style, traditional Japanese patterns, fabrics and colors, has designers remake vintage fashion into contemporary looks.

blossom tabi
Blossoms on Boots – funky tabi get a Wa Style make over.

Traditional Japanese tabi boots are being given a funky street style make over. The Blossom Tabi are an eye catching, one-of-a-kind pair of Japanese style boots. This gorgeous pair of hand created traditional Tabi toe boots have been given authentic Wa treatment by Japanese designer Honmonoya. Making use of vintage kimono silk and Japanese cloth, Honmonoya combines a past look with a modern structure.

obi bag
From Belt to Bag – traditional colors and prints make redesign easy

Obis are traditionally used to wrap around kimono and yukata to keep them closed. The creator of B.S.E.T.C, a Japanese design range, has found a new use for these vintage sashes. B.S.E.T.C creations are functional and unique with a focus on reconstructing, reusing and recycling. Designs such as the Obi and Denim bag make a playful and gorgeous new use of traditional patterns and fabric.

kimono noren
Kimono Apartment Therapy – Japanese chic for your living space

From traditional Japanese dress to new form and function, vintage kimonos are increasingly remade for new uses. Not always in the form of fashion. This vintage kimono was remade into a noren, the traditional fabric dividers hung in doorways. Item by item, Kimono Chic helps Japanese style to recapture the home.

kiku stool
Classic Covers – restored and reinvented

Furniture restorers Attic Japan use obi or kimono fabric to give new life to old furniture. Each Attic creation is a mixture of tradition, skill and art. Thoroughly eco-conscious, Attic Japan search for forgotten wooden treasures, which they strip and stain with numerous coats of coffee. This brings out a rich and natural color. The piece is then further enhanced with traditional fabric, making each restored piece useful again as furniture or decoration.

Making stylish new use of traditional fabrics, patterns and designs is a trend that will continue as more and more people combine their eco-consciousness with their love of vintage looks.

Deanne Tonking & Masao Tamaoki About the Author

Deanne Tonking and Masao Tamaoki connect with independent designers all over Japan to find unique art, handmade treasures and innovative design. They share their stylish discoveries on TokyoMade, offering style conscious shoppers rarely attainable creations.

Recent articles by Deanne Tonking:

Comment (日本語もOK)

ooooooooooooh, very exquisite designs :)

Aug 27, 2009 (4443 days ago)

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