Throughout history, Japanese clothing has always been a wonderful amalgamation of tradition, aesthetics, and convenience. From the ever-popular kimono to the stylish and informal happi coat, there are different types of clothes that are meant to be worn for different purposes and on special occasions.
Different Types of Japanese Clothing
Kimono is the most popular and also the clothing that is most commonly worn by the Japanese. Though it is considered formal wear, it is also worn by many on a day-to-day basis. It is a versatile piece of clothing that can be worn on many different occasions. Odori, for instance, is a traditional kimono meant for dancers. Furisode is worn by unmarried girls. Kakeshita, Shirokakeshita, and Uchikake are meant to be worn by brides on the day of their wedding. Montsuki is a formal kimono worn by men. Neneko, Dochougi, Uppawari, and Haori are jackets that can be worn over a kimono.
Hakama is a skirt, which is designed similar to wide-legged pants, worn by men. Yukata is a casual summer robe that is very convenient to wear and is usually worn by women during summer festivals and cherry blossom viewing parties.
Japanese clothing also includes a wide range of inner garments and accessories worn by men and women. Fundoshi is a loincloth worn by men. Nagajuban is an innerwear worn under the kimono. Obi is a sash that you can wrap around your kimono. Apart from this, Japanese people also love to wear traditional socks like Tobi, which are paired with ethnic sandals and boots like Zori, Jikatabi, and Geta.
Japanese Clothing in Australia
Australia is one of the most urbanized countries in the world today with a distinct fashion sense that includes elements from many different cultures. The country has over 50,000 people of Japanese ancestry, due to which there is a steady influx of people traveling between the two countries. So, you can find plenty of business establishments in Australia catering to the needs of Japanese-Australians as well as visitors from Japan.
There is no dearth of fashion outlets and retail stores that sell Japanese clothes and accessories. Depending on your preference, you can opt for stores that import vintage and authentic clothes and accessories straight from Japan or local shops that sell Japanese clothes and Japan-inspired fusion clothes that are made right here in Australia.
History of Japanese Fashion in Australia
Australia has a number of Japanese fashion designers, who arrived in the country a few decades back. Initially, there was no Japanese presence in the country’s business establishments as very few Japanese had immigrated to Australia prior to 1979. So, naturally, there were no business establishments that uniquely catered to the needs of people from Japan, particularly in terms of clothing. Wanting to change the trend, a generation of Japanese men and women started making clothes for people of Japanese origin as well as locals who were interested in exploring East Asian culture.
Soon, a number of establishments were set up in different parts of the country and Japan-based designers started making waves in the industry with their innovative designs and concepts. The trend was then followed by Australian designers and retailers, as they sensed there was a need for authentic Japanese clothing in Australia, not just among Japanese-Australians, but also the visitors from Japan as well as local residents.
Today, you can find Japanese clothes and accessories pretty much everywhere in Australia. There is an exceptionally wide range of options available – right from formal wear to casual, everyday wear, innerwear, and accessories – in a variety of different colors, materials, styles, and designs.
The Popularity of Japanese Clothing Today
Westernization has had an impact on Japanese culture and it is not an uncommon sight these days to see people of Japanese ancestry in Australia wearing suits, t-shirts, jeans, and other western clothes on a regular basis. However, the Japanese still have immense respect for their culture and heritage and only wear traditional garments on special occasions like birthdays, weddings, and religious and cultural festivals. So, the trend is likely to continue and the popularity of Japanese clothes and accessories in Australia is not likely to fade away any time soon.