Asian Dress #5 - Yukata

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Finally. The Japanese Yukata. The summer kimono.

While kimonos are made of silk, pretty much impossible to put on yourself, and expensive, yukatas are made of cotton, are easier for one to put on themselves, and much cheaper than kimonos, which is part of the reason they are still popular today.

-the word comes from "yu" (bath) and "katabira" (under clothing) -the yukata was originally worn after taking a bath. Today, they are still seen at public baths, summer events, and in the streets as casual wear.

-traditionally, yukatas came only in white, gray or indigo blue. Now.....they are as varied and as colourful as Hawaiian shirts.

"Through the centuries, reams have been written about the whiteness of the neck above the indigo-dyed blue of the yukata collar, the thin cotton almost, but not quite, revealing the outlines of the body. Yukata stood for demure eroticism, and a subtle style of sexiness that belonged only to the Japanese woman."*

....Yay for Yukatas!


So this little project that I should have finished way earlier comes to an end. Here's some extra stuff:

A line up of the girls complete with dress names in the native language for extra asian-ness - I hope I got Sari in Devanāgarī script right!

And here are the sketches that hide behind the paint. I don't have the Ao Dai because I accidentally saved over that one as a flattened image.

*Freed from tradition, Japanese dress is sexy and fun : The kimono goes summery [International Herald Tribune]