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How to Wear a Yukata

 

What is a Yukata??

Many people know what a traditional Japanese kimono looks like, simply for its unique style and patterns. Yet, so many people don`t get a chance to wear one for the expensive price tags that kimonos have.

However, did you know that there are also traditional yukatas? A yukata is part of the traditional kimono, and looks very similar to the kimono many think of. However, a yukata uses a thinner, lighter cloth and does not require as much preparation to wear as a kimono does. As many say, it`s a lot more comfortable to wear than the heavy kimono.

During the summer season, many people—both men and women—wear these yukatas to the festivals and enjoy the summer nights. Prices of yukatas can be as cheap as 3000 yen, and can be as expensive as kimonos! Unlike kimonos, they could be found in many clothing stores as well!

It could be a great way to experience the traditional Japanese clothing!

 

A list of popular yukata brands and prices can be found here:

http://matome.naver.jp/odai/2137291605375778801

A list of popular yukata hairstyles can be found here:

http://matome.naver.jp/odai/2137326851002836901

 

Things you will need:

Yukata
Tsukuri-Obi (Obi with ribbon)
Obijime
Korin Belt
Datejime
Subi-ita (or a piece of cardboard)
Geta (sandals that are worn with yukatas)

 

 1). Put your hands through the sleeves of the yukata and then cross the two sides of the yukata as the picture below

2). Note that there is a line that goes through the back of the yukata. Make sure that this line runs through the middle (of your back) when you wear the yukata

3). Making sure that the line mentioned in (2) is still in the middle, lift the right side of the yukata and make the length of the yukata go up to your ankles

4). Lift the left side as well and match up the length of the yukata to that of the right side

5). While holding onto the two sides and making sure the lengths are still the same (as picture (4)), wrap around the obijime. This will help keep the lengths of the two sides equal without holding onto the yukata

 

6). Knot (overhand knot) the obijime once

7). Pull the two sides of the knot so that one side of the string goes up and one side goes down

8). Twist the two sides into the obijime that is already wrapped around your waist to prevent the knot from untangling

9). Now that the yukata is set into place (by the obijime), put your hands through the holes between the sleeve and the yukata and push against the fabric on top of the obijime to smooth the yukata out

10). Smooth out the collar of the yukata by pulling on the end behind your back. The space between your neck and the collar should be about the size of your fist

11. Put your left hand into the opening between the sleeve and the yukata and snap on one side of the Korin Belt. Take out the other side of the Korin Belt through the opening you put your left hand through. (Another way of doing this is to simply snap on the Korin Belt and then put the other side of the Korin Belt through the opening.)

12. Bring the Korin Belt that passed through the opening around your back to the other side. Then, snap on the other side onto the left side of the yukata as well

So far, the yukata should look like this:

13. Next, wrap around the Datejime. The one being used in this picture is Velcro (a Velcro one is easier to use than a string Datejime because you don`t have to worry about the Datejime being bumpy and it is so much easier to control how tight the Datejime is around your waist) but if you have a string Datejime, the way you wrap it around your waist is the same as you did for the Obijime

14. Next, take out the obi (the band of the tsukuri obi without the ribbon). Wrap it around your waist. Then, tie the two strings at the end of each side of the obi (the way you tie your shoelace is a good way to tie it)

After tying the two sides, the obi will look something like this:

15. Bring the part of the obi that is tied (as the picture from (14)) to the back and line it up to the line that runs through the back of your yukata (mentioned in (2)).  

The obi should then look like this in the front

Since we used an obi that was soft fabric, it was very easy for the obi to get wrinkly. It is best to buy an obi that is a harder fabric, to make sure that the obi has few wrinkles.

16. Insert the Subi-ita between the obi (the Subi-ita is not necessary; however, it helps make the obi look nicer and less wrinkled).
*Note* If you do not have a Subi-ita, a piece of cardboard cut out to fit inside the obi could also work

17. Insert the ribbon between the obi in the back (where the obi is tied (picture 14)). The ribbon should have a metal clip so it could stay on

18. The ribbon also has strings on either side. Tie the strings on either side (again, the way you tie your shoelace is a good way to tie it)

19. Tuck the strings from the ribbon under the obi so that it could not be seen

20. Finish!!

21. Now, put on your geta and visit a summer festival or two!!