Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Traveling Kimono Stops in Memphis!

After two long years of waiting, I finally got my turn to wear the Traveling Kimono! The Traveling Kimono is a project where, "One kimono will be selected and sent all around the world to fellow kitsuke enthusiast[s], who will then create an ensemble representing their personal tastes and style, take photos to share and then send the kimono off to the next person" (from the Traveling Kimono Facebook page). We are also encouraged to take photos with landmarks in our area.

When I received the kimono, I had no idea what to pair with it at first. Other people had their outfits long planned out, but I opted to wait until I saw the colors in person. The kimono is quite busy looking, so deciding on an ensemble that would complement but not fight the pattern was a challenge. I also wanted to do something that hadn't been done yet. Just looking at the kimono, the obvious choices for colors could be red, yellow, or any neutrals. As these colors had been done already, I didn't want to repeat them. I also couldn't decide if I wanted to go modern or traditional. In the end, I opted for a combination of both: traditional kitsuke but with a modern pattern on the obi and modern colors. 

I ended up choosing my neko hanhaba obi. I had seen a hanhaba variation of a tsunodashi musubi a while back and was dying to use it. Even better, the musubi calls for an obiage (not typical of hanhaba obi musubi), so I was able to add an additional and possibly unexpected color: bright green. For me, this color choice was risky. I tend to go for more subdued tones. But I thought the lime green would be a focal point with this busy of a kimono as well as a hint at the coming Spring. I also went with a green and white ichimatsu sanbuhimo and a purple rose obidome, also a hint of the flowers that we hope will be blooming in the coming weeks. It's difficult to see in the photos, but the haneri is actually a pale blue color with a lace overlay. The juban is black with a white hail and sakura pattern.

A close-up of the komono
Hanhaba variation of tsunodashi musubi
On Main Street, a prime spot for trolleys and horse-drawn carriage rides
At Tom Lee Park, along the Mississippi River
 I took photos at several landmarks in the Memphis area, but you may wonder why Graceland (the home of Elvis Presley) is not present. If you know anyone from Memphis, you'll know that no one who lives here goes to Graceland. The other areas were quite touristy, but Graceland is by far the worst. ;P

Walking along the trolley lines on Main Street
Beale Street
In front of B.B. King's Blues Club on Beale Street
The stars at the Orpheum Theatre
On the banks of the Mississippi River, Hernando-Desoto bridge and the Pyramid on the horizon
At LovePop Soda Shop on South Main, Arts District
At LovePop Soda Shop on South Main, Arts District


  1. Wow I hadn't heard of the 'traveling kimono' before! Such a great idea, love it!
    Great photos! :D

  2. I am in LOVE with your juban! Is it black or purple with spots, I can't tell? It's fantastic.

    1. It's black with a tiny hail and cherry blossom pattern =)