Happy 2015 + Cool Cushions & Kimono Artisans

wafuku blog aug 12 logo A

wafuku – noun: traditional Japanese clothing

Welcome to my www.wafuku.co.uk Wordpress blog


 Happy New Year.

2015 is the year of the sheep. It is also called year of the ram and, sometimes, year of the goat. I guess I should really have given my sheep some horns.

waf new year2015


I lost the login details for my Wafuku Facebook page, so I have just started another called Wafuku Kimonos, you will find it here.



Cushions I covet.
I found these great cushions on Etsy.

I love this Astro Boy one from the seller Morondanga.


and these great ‘My Neighbour Totoro’ cushions, including a delightful soot sprite, from Homderful.


and this No Face one, also from Morondanga.


Morondanga also offer this nice geisha cushion


An onigiri one


and, away from the Japanese theme, this Lieutenant Uhura cushion that I rather like, though I do feel it should have her ear-piece. Did you know that the word uhura is Swahili for freedom?



Yuzen kimonos are ones with hand painted textile art. They are, not surprisingly and quite justifiably, vastly expensive. Here are some pictures showing yuzen work in progress, by Takesi Goto. He has drawn the colour sketches, applied the outlines to the silk and tacked the pieces together to check the alignment. The next stage is to paint the design with textile dyes and touches of gold, all expertly done by hand, of course.

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Outlines on the tacked together pieces of the kimono



The colour sketches of the artwork for the kimono


yuzen art

Another kimono he has outlined ready for painting. I don’t have colour sketches for this one.


Here are some fantastic stage costumes also done by Takesi Goto.


Check out the sketches on the wall behind them too. Stunning work by a great master.


Ypu can see some more of his work on his website here


and more here


and more here



I came across this cover of Tokyo Journal magazine, with a photo of Gene Simmons, of Kiss, wearing a kimono.  He is actually wearing a women’s kimono. You can tell by the sleeves. It also looks like it may be a female’s odori kimono (a traditional dancer’s kimono). I think the lightning strike was probably appliqued onto it for the photo shoot, as it looks added.



There is a kimono tailor in Japan, by the name of Lyuta, who is making lovely, contemporary kimonos and haoris. His website is here and he is also on Facebook as ‘Kimono tailor LYUTA’.
I’ve added some photos of his garments below. A few are for women but most seem to be men’s garments.


Reversible, men’s kimono



A men’s kimono made of Marimekko fabric



I think this is my favourite of his garments.



A women’s kimono with pairs of cats
on an ichimatsu (checkerboard) and bokashi (shaded) background.



Multi-tone, men’s hansome ensemble



Pigs & Polkadots


Note the contemporary detail of a mobile phone pocket.
Traditionally, kimonos have no pockets. Inro and  kinchaku (drawstring)
pouches held by the obi, with the help of netsuke, were used instead, with
small, light things also carried in the sleeves, now and then. Nowadays the
mobile phone demands a pocket.



Cat-tastic Men’s Kimono



A two tone denim, katamigawari, men’s kimono.
Katamigawari means half-and-half.



Samurai motifs


Close up of the haori fabric.



Big dots on bold, bright green



Oatmeal denim men’s kimono
another with the unusual addition of pockets for that ubiquitous phone, tablet etc.
Notice that, like most good quality kimonos, these appear to be hand stitched.



A denim kimono for a young girl
who chose these fabrics for her kimono



Arabesque pattern, above and below.


The tailor himself.
I think that is in his shop



Reversible- Pinstripes & Polkadots.


The spotty side, for those less subdued moods



Heart Fancy, men’s kimono



Lots of labels



Military style kimono for a man.



Delightful daisies haori

An old murayama-(oshima-)tsumugi with red lining, as a male kimono.

 An old Oshima tsumugi kimono relined in red textile.
More often than not, these Oshima tsumugi kimonos are lined in
indigo dyed cotton. I really like the red replacement in this one.

Those are just some examples of Kimono tailor Lyuta’s creations. I love his style


You can also check out my www.wafuku.co.uk website, providing vintage & antique Japanese kimonos & collectables.



One of my kimonos being modelled by the singer Rita Ora



Please note that any advertisements shown below my posts are put there by WordPress, not by me. I am not responsible for whatever product or service is advertised and it being there does not mean that I endorse or recommend it. 



  1. Dear Friend! A happy new year! Have you noticed that “Delightful daisies haori” is standing above a manhole cover with the cherry blossoms found in Central okyo? (Each city has a different one in Japan!)
    best regards,

    1. I hadn’t actually noticed that. There are some magnificent manhole covers in Japan.
      I thought I had pictures of some in one of my posts here but seem to have forgotten to do that. Now that you have reminded me, I may put them in my next post, a I do have a number of pictures of lovely ones.
      I hadn’t even noticed your typo until you mentioned it, I automatically read it as Tokyo. Amazing how the brain makes us see what we expect.

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