No longer just for Geishas and the bedroom, the kimono and Japanese inspired 18th century fashion made its way out of the Tokyo tearooms and onto the streets of London, Paris, Milan and New York. There was a consistent theme among the designers that ancient Japanese style was the key look for the season. Alexander Wang, Marni, Hervé Leger, Max Azria, Vera Wang, Gucci and Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen all gave a distinct nod to eastern style with kimono dresses, crossover kimono style trenches, obi and judo belts and Asian inspired graphical prints. Sarah Burton took a particularly interesting twist showing Memoirs of a Geisha, meets 50 Shades of Grey in the American Horror Story Murder House by sending the models down the runway in Japanese print paired with latex bondage masks.
You are interested in trying out the look, but how does one translate this style into something wearable around town and not run the risk of looking like you just stepped out of a Kabuki Theatre?
Kimonos make a gorgeous topper and completely change the look of whatever you are wearing by turning it and your entire look into a statement. They marry elegance with ease, bohemian with sophistication, all with one lovely addition. They come in long, short and hip length and look equally great in all variations. So I suggest you pick a length, select a print or DIY one, just give it a try.
How to Wear Kimono Style Fashion ?
Kimono with Jeans
The kimono looks great with jeans and gives a slightly dressier more polished around town look. It works well with skinny jeans, boyfriend or girlfriend jeans, and equally so with the flared or bootcut leg to give it a more distinctly 70s style. It works with most any style of jeans, just maybe not the mom version.
This look is perfect for Coachella or Glastonbury (or any of the outdoor festivals). Try a kimono with long fringe over your denim shorts and mid-calf boots.
Kimono with a Dress
The kimono takes a skinny tank dress from sexy to elegant. Try it over a long maxi dress for a boho look, or a long kimono over a shorter dress. Belt it or leave it open, both work. Topping it over a sundress gives a cute summer day look or over a slip dress for cocktails in the evening.
A kimono works beautifully with a pencil skirt, fit and flare or flouncy skirt. You can also try a long one with a maxi skirt, but beware of proportions.
The kimono looks great with leatherette or shiny black leggings. It’s one of my favourite looks.
Wear a kimono over a monochromatic look.
This crossover kimono meets trench coat, meets a robe coat in soft fabrics is gorgeous for spring.
Obi and Judo Belts
Belts that are distinctly obi and/or judo style cinched tight around the waist or tied, knotted and left to hang down long and create a streamlined silhouette were everywhere. The judo belts were shown in wide and narrower versions, ribbed and belted tight to emphasize the waist, or left to hang a bit lower to give a more relaxed look to structured pieces. The designers showed them over roomier coats, blazers, vests, dresses, blouses and even slung lower on the waist with the wider leg trouser. Tie it to the side to pull in more voluminous styles.