Waving sleeves

Friday 16th, September 2016 / 09:21 Written by
Waving sleeves

My daughter will graduate from a university in Japan and wants to wear a Furisode for the ceremony. I wore one for mine decades ago, too.

Furisode is a kimono with long sleeves exclusively for young unmarried women. It is the seijinshikimost formal and gorgeous kimono for special occasions such as wedding and coming of age ceremony.

It is said that Furisode, meaning waving sleeves, was used for single women to express their acceptance or rejection of advances from suitors. Once you are married, you wear a kimono with shorter sleeves.

With traditional rules being loosened, however, some young married women are now wearing Furisode. A website talked about a young mother attending the coming of age ceremony in Furisode with her small child and said that the reaction of people was positive. tetsukoSome ‘older’ single women are wearing one, too. The most famous celebrity is Tetsuko Kuroyanagi, who keeps wearing one well into her eighties. Japanese media are gossiping that she might get married next year. We wonder what she will wear then.

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