Today is “Coming of Age” Day in Japan. It is a national holiday, meaning there is no school and no work (except certain jobs like police officers and nurses, who are needed every day of the year.)
Coming of Age Day is a day that celebrates when a child becomes an adult. This is is considered to be twenty years old. On Coming of Age Day almost all twenty-year-old women wear beautiful kimonos. Twenty-year-old men usually wear suits, but some might wear kimono.
You’ll see these young people in Japan during this second Monday of January–the young women very noticeable in their elaborate kimono. (The men less noticeable in their suits.) I asked my husband what they do all day, and said, “Nothing. Drink.” I think they hang around with friends. Japanese high schools don’t have school dances so this is a great time for young people to really go all out and dress up.
The following photos are current photos. They show KIMONO. Real kimonos, which are very expensive (and are thus often rented by the wearer.) They bear NO RESEMBLANCE to what Americans call “kimono” which is usually a cheap polyester robe with a dragon on the back. Authentic kimonos are not always elaborate, though–in olden times, peasants wore plain kimonos. The following photos show gorgeous kimonos, not “every day” type kimonos.
See how very gorgeous it is?
And notice the young man is wearing a suit. Because the Coming of Age Day is in the midst of winter, the woman on the far right has a white stole.
The following photos were taken during the summer, and they show YUKATA. These in the photos are festival yukatas. These are worn for festivals in warm and hot months. They are less expensive than the kimonos in the above photos. These yukatas are most likely owned by the young women, not rented, because they are affordable. Young men also wear these festival yukata, but not as often as women or girls.
着物 (kimono) literally means “a thing that is worn.”(Ki=wear Mono=Thing) (Please remember that word dates back long ago when western clothing did not exist in Japan.)
浴衣 (yukata) literally means “bath clothes” So you can tell by the word itself that a yukata is less formal than a typical modern kimono.
What a lovely yukata….
Pretty pretty girls in their pretty pretty yukatas
I took all photos in Fukushima.