Here comes the summer time in Japan. The rainy season «Tsuyu» is finally GONE ! Let’s wear a bikini and run to the beach … yeah ! But summer time is also dress-up season for Japanese people. Yukatas appear and so do the summer festivals.
What’s a Yukata? Good question! I didn’t know the word Yukata before my first trip to Japan either … It’s actually a simple and colorful cotton Kimono that the Japanese girls love to wear in summer.
We all have the image of the Kimono in our mind, usually just between the Mount Fuji and the Sushi. It’s a strong part of the Japanese culture but this traditional dress is disappearing while the contempory fashion rises up. Kimonos are formal wear that is only worn in only few occasions in the life of a Japanese woman. But the Yukata is the Star of the Summertime.
Light, comfortable, colorful, and cheap, this traditional dress is perfect. The Japanese girl can use it to combine her culture and her modern lifestyle. For any occasions, “Matsuri” the summer festival, “Hana-bi” the summer fireworks, or a simple day shopping, it is very refreshing to wear this cotton dress which let the wind pass trough.
The very large choices of pattern, fabrics, colors and its very cheap price make the Yukata number one on the Japanese “To Buy” List! Having lived in Japan for a while, I am myself an active member of the very large summer Yukata club. I discovered the different styles, tendencies and accessories connected to this silhouette. The mood changes every year so you always end up buying some new items!
Beside the Yukata, you of course wear an Obi. This large fabric belt gives as much elegance to the traditional Kimono as to the simple Yukata. Geta, Japanese wood sandals, are also unavoidable, traditional, and Chic! The list is long: flower brooches, hair pin, fabric clutches, belt accessories, …. All special Matsuri !