Tomomi (Tokyo)

Tomomi came to Tokyo from Kagoshima in Kyushu, for work, after doing graduate studies in Hiroshima. Her only memories of being dressed in kimono are 7,5,3 and coming of age. She doesn’t remember her family wearing kimono, but her grandmother sewed them. She remembers that when she started to wear kimono, when she was a graduate student, her grandmother was most excited. The internet was not as widely available then as now, and there was not a lot of material on it. She taught herself to wear kimono from the diagrams in a popular kimono mook. It was really difficult though. She did a lot of sewing of collars, and experimented to try and make it easier to put on. Tomomi liked going to the theater to see Kyogen and Kabuki, so she wanted to wear kimono for that. She also thought it would be interesting to try and live daily life in kimono, so she tried to wear it to her lab and also for doing housework. However, she eventually gave up the experiment because she kept catching her sleeves in door handles and she found kimono difficult to do housework in. First she mastered the kimono, but still couldn’t do the Nagoya obi, so she went to the theatre wearing a half width obi. Then she learnt to make otaiko with a special kairyo makura. this meant she could make the shape in front of her and then move it around to the back. Finally she learnt to tie it herself. About 3 years ago, some of her colleagues decided they wanted to learn kitsuke and started to go to lessons. Tomomi joined them, and was surprised to learn that she had been tying the obi wrong. It looked the same, but the method was wrong. She goes to the teacher because they have a lot of fun there, and they do cooking and talking as well as putting on kimono. It is a very casual and fun time for Tomomi.Her collection is 39 kimono and also a few back in the family house in Kagoshima. Her special kimono are in some pawlonia drawers and her everyday ones are in some plastic clothes boxes. They are mostly komon, bought used from the internet.






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