Kyoto to Catwalk

We are very much hoping that the Victoria and Albert Museum can open its planned exhibition “Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk” shortly. Until then, Adam Jacot de Boinod has wandered the Japanese streets for us, in search of the secrets that lie beneath. Kimonos seem to be everywhere – inside and outside, summer and winter – worn by tourists, locals, old or young, men and woman, alike. Like with all fashion, the Kimono follows the latest look desire. However, faultlessly made, they should last a lifetime, if not several.

In Tokyo, the Kimono’s are quite modern, in Kyoto – their spiritual home – a little more conservative. Kimonos have inspired a variety of western designers – Saint Laurent, Galliano – and Kim Kardashian even planned to name her shapewear range Kimono. The mayor of Kyoto quickly asked her to reconsider, which she did.

In the last 20 years, it has undergone a revival with designers focusing on the trendy. There is even a T-shaped version.

In their official V&A statement, the curator explains the Kimono’s impact.

“From the sophisticated culture of 17th century Kyoto to the creativity of the contemporary catwalk, the kimono is unique in its aesthetic importance and cultural impact, giving it a fascinating place within the story of fashion”.

It has an impact that will endure forever!

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