Category: Study Abroad


I dressed my friend Kelsey for her Coming of Age Day in a furisode she rented.  I actually dressed her twice, the first time was a test run a few days before the actual ceremony.  She went to a local temple to take pictures.  The furisode was just gorgeous and I think the kitsuke came out very well. There’s not much else to say, so here are the pictures.

成人の日に、ケルシーという友達に彼女が借りた振袖を着せました。二回着せました。一回目は試しで、二回目は成人式のためだった。近くの寺に行って、写真を撮りました。振袖は本当に美しかったです。着付けもよかったと思います。それで、写真です~

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This is just a short post about my friends and my hatsumoude, or first shrine visit of the year.  A bunch of people from the dorm including myself went down to a temple called Koushou-ji. There were quite a lot of people and food vendors and stuff which was nice, but since hatsumoude is supposed to be to a shrine not a temple, we set off on what would become a rather long journey to find a nice shrine to pray at. We eventually found one and there was no one there, so it was quite peaceful.

初詣のついての短い更新です。寮に住んでいた友達と近くの興正寺に行きました。食べ物がたくさんあったけど、もちろん、興正寺は寺なので、それから祈れる神社を見つけるために長旅しちゃいました。やっとの思い出、誰もいなくて静かなのを見つけました。

I wore my blue wool kimono with black accessories and I wore my awesome new haori that my friend’s hostdad bought me. The crests are nami-chidori and the lining has ume with a nightingale.

青いウールの着物を着て、黒いアクセサリーを使って、友達のホストファザーが買って下さった羽織を着ました。家紋は波千鳥で、羽裏に梅と鶯が染まりました。

at Koushou-ji 興正寺で

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the new haori  新しい羽織

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at the small shrine 見つけた神社で

and then this was the view of Nagoya from the hill 坂からの景色

On New Years Day, we went to Atsuta Jingu, a very famous shrine, but there were a ton of people, so we just made our round and left. お正月に熱田神宮に行ったけど、人が多すぎたから、見回して出ました。

the line to go pray at the shrine 祈りに来た人々

Back in November, my study abroad program (IES) brought us to Kyoto. It was our final and biggest trip for the semester, so of course I decided to wear kimono My friend Brittany decided to finally get her first kimono set, so I helped her get all the stuff she needed before she left. She chose a beautiful komon with red and orange maple leaves, which was perfect for the season. Her obi was a green hanhaba obi with owls. I chose my blue wool set

Our first stop on the trip was Kiyomizudera. The weekend we went was apparently the peak of the momijigari (maple-viewing) season, which is evident from this picture.

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I also helped my friend John get a full kimono set before we went on the trip. He’s really tall, so opted for hakama, which worked really well. We also got randomly interviewed in front of Kiyomizudera by a Japanese reporter asking us why we were in Kyoto and why we were in kimono.

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Later, we made our own sensu!

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That night, we did the coolest thing I did the entire year: had an ozashiki with geisha! Our geiko was my favorite geiko Tsuneyuu’s younger sister Tsunemomo, our maiko was Hisamomo, and our jimae geiko was Tsunekazu. I asked if we could talk to them one-on-one after we played Konpira Fune Fune. Tsunemomo was very excited to learn that her older sister was my favorite geisha, and that I had gone to see her in the Gion Odori and she said she’d tell Tsuneyuu. =D They also both did a dance for us.

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The next day, we went to Nijojou and walked around the garden. Only John I wore kimono the second day.

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The nightengale floors of Nijojou
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After that, we went to Kinkaku-ji.

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The last day, we went to Arashiyama which is a beautiful little place outside of Kyoto, about 20 minutes by train. We got to ride the rickshaws for quite some time and went through the bamboo grove.

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There are a bunch of other cool pictures in the full set here.