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How To: Wear Japanese Yukata!
How To: Wear Japanese Yukata!
17th May 2022 • by Kiru
17th May 2022 • Team Tofu Kiru will teach you how to wear a Yukata! • by Kiru
Team Tofu Kiru will teach you how to wear a Yukata!
Hello, Kiri here! Today I will be teaching you how to wear a Japanese traditional item of clothing known as a Yukata!

Yukata are a type of Kimono. The word Kimono ‘着物’ literally means ‘thing to wear’. There are 13 types of Kimono for women, Yukata being the last.
Yukata can be worn by any gender, however there are slight differences between women’s and men’s Yukata, such as the colour, pattern, the type of Obi belt and where the obi is worn.

Yukata are often made from lightweight, breathable fabrics such as cotton, linen, or polyester. Yukata are worn in Japan in the summer months to keep cool and are also worn at summer matsuri festivals or in Ryokan hotels as a bathrobe, as this is where the word Yukata ‘浴衣’ originates from, literally bathing cloth!
The main differences between Kimono and Yukata, is that Yukata are the most casual form of Kimono. Kimono are usually made from higher quality materials and often have an interior lining. You are also supposed to wear various other layers and padding underneath a Kimono to give the garment structure, whereas with a Yukata, the idea is to literally feel and look ‘cool’ as in not hot!

Before we begin, whether you are wearing Yukata for Cosplay, or for fashion, please always remember that Yukata is a traditional piece of clothing from Japanese culture and not a ‘costume’ so please treat this garment with the utmost respect whilst having fun!

Okay, let’s begin! Hajimemashou!!
To wear a Yukata you will need 3 basics:
1 x Yukata, 2 x Koshihimo waist ties, and 1 x Obi belt, all the rest is optional.

I will be using a few additional items today to help improve my look. Here is what I will be using:

• Obi-ita (used to keep the obi flat *optional)
• 2 x Koshihimo (waist tie – can use a wide 2.5m long piece of ribbon instead)
• Easy Datejime (keeps shape of waist *optional)
• Easy Pre-tied Obi Belt (can use a big, long scarf or piece of fabric)
• Safety pins
• Obiage (used for kimono as a decoration *optional)
• Obijime (decorative string used for kimono *optional)
• Yukata (Summer Kimono made of cotton / linen or Polyester)
Firstly, underneath your Yukata
you will want to wear some undergarments to protect the yukata from your skin when it is hot! I am wearing a Hada Juban but you can wear a vest/camisole or V neck t-shirt.

I am also wearing some slippy trousers, but you can wear a short wrap skirt, shorts or even cropped leggings. (To be honest even just normal underwear is fine!)
So, now you can now put on your Yukata,
just let it go to the floor and drape freely.

There is a seam down the back of all Kimono so you can feel/see this to make sure it is on straight.

Check this in a mirror or by feeling the back.
Next, we need to get the length correct!

All yukata and Kimono are free size, so you can adjust them to fit your body how you like, however they are usually very long! So, let’s learn how to make them the right length.

Generally speaking, you want about an 8cm/ 3-inch gap from the floor to the hem.

To achieve this, pinch the front of your Yukata with one hand at about bellybutton height and pull outwards.
Then with your other hand, pinch the back and pick up the Yukata raising it above the floor.
When you are happy with how high it is, keep pulling the front tight to keep it from slipping down.
Kimono Rule #1: Left over Right

When closing a Yukata, we always close Left over Right. A fun way to remember this is ‘Leftover rice!’ (Never close the Yukata right over left as this is how Japanese dress the dead!)

1. Now with both hands, take one side each of the Yukata.
2. With your right hand, sweep the right side across your body to the left, pulling it upwards (a little higher than the 8cm hem gap at the bottom!) and hold it on your waist.
3. Next, use your left elbow to clamp the right side in place and cross your left side closed, over your body to the right! (fewf! Did you get that?)
Hold in place with your left hand and with your right hand, grab your first Koshihimo waist tie!
4. Fastening time! With your right hand, place the waist tie against your stomach so you don’t let go of the front. Now with your left hand, bring the waist tie around your body.
5. Wrap it around twice, pull tight and tie a bow.
6. Slide the bow to your left, so it’s off centre and tuck the ribbons up into the waist tie. This stops the front getting too bulky and keeps everything neat~

Pro Tip* At this point if you want to put a safety pin into the front of the skirt part to stop it moving around I would do this now~ I would put it on the right side where the fabric overlaps just above your hip bone.

That’s the skirt part and the close done!
Next we need to sort out the top and make it pretty!

1. If you didn’t already notice, Yukata and Kimono have an opening under the sleeves! This makes for great ventilation in hot summer months! Put your hands through inside the Yukata using these gaps under your arms. *(I am demonstrating on the outside so you can see the movements)
2. Keeping your palms flat, using a ‘chop-chop’ motion, use your fingertips to flatten and push down the fold in your top, creating a neat line.
3. Now do this in the back, using the same flat hand ‘chop-chop’ motion.
Here you can also adjust the neckline in the back. You should pull the neck down so there is a gap the size of your clenched fist between the nape of your neck and the yukata neckline.
4. Fastening time again! Take your second Koshihimo waist tie and wrap it around your body twice.
5. Tie at the front into a bow and slide the bow this time to your right side. Tuck up the tails of the bow into the waist tie to keep things neat and not too bulky.
6. Now do one last check that the back seam is neat and central as well as checking your neckline still has a fist sized gap, adjust if needed! Make sure there are no creases or wrinkles in the front and back, a perfect Yukata is flat and neat.
Dajejime and Obi-ita

This next part is optional when wearing Yukata, but I really like to wear these pieces to keep my Obi belt neat through-out the day, and to stop things moving around, especially when I am working.

Take your Dajejime and Obi-ita and put them around your body where your waist ties are, to keep everything neat, flat and in-shape.
Obi time!

In this case we are using an ‘easy obi’ which is a simple, short, half width obi, with handy ties for fastening. It also comes with a detachable pre-tied bow that just hooks on and ties in the front!

1. First take your obi, if it has a pointy end find this and fold the obi in on itself making a roll.
Try to keep the white tie free as we will need it in a bit!
2. Roll the whole obi all the way up like a Swiss roll, until you have about 30cm left.
3. Keeping the ties at the top, place this obi belt against yourself, hold in place with one hand.
4. With the other hand, wrap the Obi around yourself until you run out. Now pull the strings nice and tight in the front!
5. Tie a big bow and tuck this in at the top so all the strings are out of sight.
6. Holding the obi at the top with both hands, swivel it around so the end piece is out of sight under your arm.

* Pro-Tip! When swivelling your Obi to the side, always twist to your right as this will stop the cross over at the neckline bunching up!
Time for the bow!

1. Take your pre-tied bow, and free up the ties, find the hook part which is the big white U shape. Reach around the back and hook the U-shaped wire into the back of your Obi so it’s sitting in the middle.
2. Bring the ties around to the front, pull the ties tightly and tie a little bow.
3. Check in a mirror to make sure everything is central and straight at the back.
4. Tuck in your ties so they can’t be seen!

We’re done!
I’ve added some flare by tying green Obiage and Obijime, which are additional Kimono decorations.
I think these really make the leaves in the print pop! I also put on a more traditional Kanzashi hair ornament to add a touch of something special to my outfit! As for shoes, you can wear any kind of sandals with Yukata~ Something summery! Traditionally would be some Zori or Geta, worn without socks!

And there you are! We are fully dressed and ready to enjoy the day. I hope if you followed along you are now proudly wearing your beautiful Yukata! I hope you enjoyed my tutorial~

If you now want to wear your own Yukata and don’t have one, you can find a cute Sanrio Yukata, like the one I am wearing, from our dear friends over at ARTBOX as well as other normal types online in places like eBay, Yahoo Auctions JP and Rakuten!

Until next time~ Matte ne!
Hello, Kiri here! Today I will be teaching you how to wear a Japanese traditional item of clothing known as a Yukata!

Yukata are a type of Kimono. The word Kimono ‘着物’ literally means ‘thing to wear’. There are 13 types of Kimono for women, Yukata being the last.
Yukata can be worn by any gender, however there are slight differences between women’s and men’s Yukata, such as the colour, pattern, the type of Obi belt and where the obi is worn.

Yukata are often made from lightweight, breathable fabrics such as cotton, linen, or polyester. Yukata are worn in Japan in the summer months to keep cool and are also worn at summer matsuri festivals or in Ryokan hotels as a bathrobe, as this is where the word Yukata ‘浴衣’ originates from, literally bathing cloth!
The main differences between Kimono and Yukata, is that Yukata are the most casual form of Kimono. Kimono are usually made from higher quality materials and often have an interior lining. You are also supposed to wear various other layers and padding underneath a Kimono to give the garment structure, whereas with a Yukata, the idea is to literally feel and look ‘cool’ as in not hot!

Before we begin, whether you are wearing Yukata for Cosplay, or for fashion, please always remember that Yukata is a traditional piece of clothing from Japanese culture and not a ‘costume’ so please treat this garment with the utmost respect whilst having fun!

Okay, let’s begin! Hajimemashou!!
To wear a Yukata you will need 3 basics:
1 x Yukata, 2 x Koshihimo waist ties, and 1 x Obi belt, all the rest is optional.

I will be using a few additional items today to help improve my look. Here is what I will be using:

• Obi-ita (used to keep the obi flat *optional)
• 2 x Koshihimo (waist tie – can use a wide 2.5m long piece of ribbon instead)
• Easy Datejime (keeps shape of waist *optional)
• Easy Pre-tied Obi Belt (can use a big, long scarf or piece of fabric)
• Safety pins
• Obiage (used for kimono as a decoration *optional)
• Obijime (decorative string used for kimono *optional)
• Yukata (Summer Kimono made of cotton / linen or Polyester)
Firstly, underneath your Yukata
you will want to wear some undergarments to protect the yukata from your skin when it is hot! I am wearing a Hada Juban but you can wear a vest/camisole or V neck t-shirt.

I am also wearing some slippy trousers, but you can wear a short wrap skirt, shorts or even cropped leggings. (To be honest even just normal underwear is fine!)
So, now you can now put on your Yukata,
just let it go to the floor and drape freely.

There is a seam down the back of all Kimono so you can feel/see this to make sure it is on straight.

Check this in a mirror or by feeling the back.
Next, we need to get the length correct!

All yukata and Kimono are free size, so you can adjust them to fit your body how you like, however they are usually very long! So, let’s learn how to make them the right length.

Generally speaking, you want about an 8cm/ 3-inch gap from the floor to the hem.

To achieve this, pinch the front of your Yukata with one hand at about bellybutton height and pull outwards.
Then with your other hand, pinch the back and pick up the Yukata raising it above the floor.
When you are happy with how high it is, keep pulling the front tight to keep it from slipping down.
Kimono Rule #1: Left over Right

When closing a Yukata, we always close Left over Right. A fun way to remember this is ‘Leftover rice!’ (Never close the Yukata right over left as this is how Japanese dress the dead!)

1. Now with both hands, take one side each of the Yukata.
2. With your right hand, sweep the right side across your body to the left, pulling it upwards (a little higher than the 8cm hem gap at the bottom!) and hold it on your waist.
3. Next, use your left elbow to clamp the right side in place and cross your left side closed, over your body to the right! (fewf! Did you get that?)
Hold in place with your left hand and with your right hand, grab your first Koshihimo waist tie!
4. Fastening time! With your right hand, place the waist tie against your stomach so you don’t let go of the front. Now with your left hand, bring the waist tie around your body.
5. Wrap it around twice, pull tight and tie a bow.
6. Slide the bow to your left, so it’s off centre and tuck the ribbons up into the waist tie. This stops the front getting too bulky and keeps everything neat~

Pro Tip* At this point if you want to put a safety pin into the front of the skirt part to stop it moving around I would do this now~ I would put it on the right side where the fabric overlaps just above your hip bone.

That’s the skirt part and the close done!
Next we need to sort out the top and make it pretty!

1. If you didn’t already notice, Yukata and Kimono have an opening under the sleeves! This makes for great ventilation in hot summer months! Put your hands through inside the Yukata using these gaps under your arms. *(I am demonstrating on the outside so you can see the movements)
2. Keeping your palms flat, using a ‘chop-chop’ motion, use your fingertips to flatten and push down the fold in your top, creating a neat line.
3. Now do this in the back, using the same flat hand ‘chop-chop’ motion.
Here you can also adjust the neckline in the back. You should pull the neck down so there is a gap the size of your clenched fist between the nape of your neck and the yukata neckline.
4. Fastening time again! Take your second Koshihimo waist tie and wrap it around your body twice.
5. Tie at the front into a bow and slide the bow this time to your right side. Tuck up the tails of the bow into the waist tie to keep things neat and not too bulky.
6. Now do one last check that the back seam is neat and central as well as checking your neckline still has a fist sized gap, adjust if needed! Make sure there are no creases or wrinkles in the front and back, a perfect Yukata is flat and neat.
Dajejime and Obi-ita

This next part is optional when wearing Yukata, but I really like to wear these pieces to keep my Obi belt neat through-out the day, and to stop things moving around, especially when I am working.

Take your Dajejime and Obi-ita and put them around your body where your waist ties are, to keep everything neat, flat and in-shape.
Obi time!

In this case we are using an ‘easy obi’ which is a simple, short, half width obi, with handy ties for fastening. It also comes with a detachable pre-tied bow that just hooks on and ties in the front!

1. First take your obi, if it has a pointy end find this and fold the obi in on itself making a roll.
Try to keep the white tie free as we will need it in a bit!
2. Roll the whole obi all the way up like a Swiss roll, until you have about 30cm left.
3. Keeping the ties at the top, place this obi belt against yourself, hold in place with one hand.
4. With the other hand, wrap the Obi around yourself until you run out. Now pull the strings nice and tight in the front!
5. Tie a big bow and tuck this in at the top so all the strings are out of sight.
6. Holding the obi at the top with both hands, swivel it around so the end piece is out of sight under your arm.

* Pro-Tip! When swivelling your Obi to the side, always twist to your right as this will stop the cross over at the neckline bunching up!
Time for the bow!

1. Take your pre-tied bow, and free up the ties, find the hook part which is the big white U shape. Reach around the back and hook the U-shaped wire into the back of your Obi so it’s sitting in the middle.
2. Bring the ties around to the front, pull the ties tightly and tie a little bow.
3. Check in a mirror to make sure everything is central and straight at the back.
4. Tuck in your ties so they can’t be seen!

We’re done!
I’ve added some flare by tying green Obiage and Obijime, which are additional Kimono decorations.
I think these really make the leaves in the print pop! I also put on a more traditional Kanzashi hair ornament to add a touch of something special to my outfit! As for shoes, you can wear any kind of sandals with Yukata~ Something summery! Traditionally would be some Zori or Geta, worn without socks!

And there you are! We are fully dressed and ready to enjoy the day. I hope if you followed along you are now proudly wearing your beautiful Yukata! I hope you enjoyed my tutorial~

If you now want to wear your own Yukata and don’t have one, you can find a cute Sanrio Yukata, like the one I am wearing, from our dear friends over at ARTBOX as well as other normal types online in places like eBay, Yahoo Auctions JP and Rakuten!

Until next time~ Matte ne!
About the Author: Kiru
Kiru is a long-time member of Team Tofu, she can often be found at events and helping around the warehouse. When she's not helping customers find the perfect treats, she can be found reigning over her kingdom of Rilakkuma. She spends her free time, dressing in quirky fashions, singing, gaming and cooking lots of tasty treats!
About the Author: Kiru
Kiru is a long-time member of Team Tofu, she can often be found at events and helping around the warehouse. When she's not helping customers find the perfect treats, she can be found reigning over her kingdom of Rilakkuma. She spends her free time, dressing in quirky fashions, singing, gaming and cooking lots of tasty treats!
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