Culture Local

Places to Experience Kyoto’s Kimono

Have you heard of ‘Kimono’, the Japanese traditional clothing?

It is likely known by many of you. Examples of beautiful Kimono can be seen in the movie ’SAYURI’, for example, and today many Japanese women wear it on days of celebration, weddings or Coming of Age Day and other formal occasions..

‘Nishijin Textile(西陣織)’ is a unique kind of Kimono and was developed by a traditional weaving technique in Kyoto. In this article we introduce what ‘Nishijin Textile’ is and the places where you can experience making and wearing it.

What is ‘Nishijin Textiles’?

葵祭絵図 . 西陣織佐賀錦/京鐘謹製 . 葵祭の順行のみやびを御所車や公家の姫君達、そして春爛漫の千歳を基調とした風景を描写し織り上げました。 . #京鐘 #kyokanewedding #想い出結婚式 #京都 #kyoto #銀座 #ginza #和婚 #和婚式 #京都結婚式 #ブライダル #ウェディング #和装花嫁 #花嫁衣裳 #和装撮影 #結婚式前撮り #フォトウェディング #ブライダルフォト #ロケーション撮影 #和装ロケーション撮影 #庭園#プレ花嫁 #結婚式準備 #和婚をもっと盛り上げたい#日本中のプレ花嫁さんと繋がりたい #全国のプレ花嫁さんと繋がりたい# #色打掛 #葵祭 #西陣織

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Nishijin Textile is a type of textile made in the area of Kyoto called Nishijin. The main characteristic is that dyed yarn is used to make patterns. It requires numerous detailed steps to make completely. Although there are many types of patterns using this style, the amount of kimonos made with this style are relatively rare, making these very valuable.

Its history is a long one,which when people brought silk textiles to Japan from the continent in the 5~6 century. The Court set up a public office to make luxury textiles when the capital moved to Heiankyo, when the weaving industry was developing at this time.

In the Muromachi era, a historic battle known as  ‘Onin-no-ran’ took place and it divided Kyoto into 2 parts, ‘Nishijin’ and ‘Higashijin’. After the battle the weaving workers returned to Kyoto, and within the Nishijin area (which was previously the central location of where the battle took place) and then it became known as ‘Nishijin Textile’.

What can you do at Nishijin Textile Centre?

In Nishijin Textile Centre, there is an exhibit of the textile works featured, and we recommend going there if you want to experience kimono’s culture closely because it has many original works.

Nishijin Kimono Show

It is performed every  hour on a stage show. It is arranged seasonally, and therefore there are various seasonal themes features with the  kimono.

Textile Making

There is a Kimono textile weaving experience available(an area of fabric of 20cm×30cm) using a small hand loom. You can keep it after finishing, as a souvenir. Let’s try it if you want to experience how make it by hand.

- Time: 40 minutes
- Target: Over 11 years old.
- Fee: 2,000 yen 
*Last entry time: 4:30 pm
*Reservation required 

Ifyou don’t have the confidence to make yourself, you can see traditional craftsmen  making it, and observe their intricate technique

Nishijin textile workshop

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Wearing

You can rent a total kimono  and you will be dressed in the kimono by the specialist staff. You can take pictures inside the Centre and go outside and enjoy sightseeing while wearing a kimono.

- Time: 20 minutes
- Fee: 3,000 yen /Wearing the kimono inside the Centre only 
- 4,000 yen /includes going outside in the Kimono until 5 pm
*reservation necessary

Buying

Of course, you can buy kimono made by Nishijin Textile, you also can buy good value small souvenirs, card cases, straps and other gifts. If you find your favorite, why not buy one as a memento of your visit?

西陣織会館 (Nishijin Textile Center)

- Address: Nishigawa, Minamiiri, Horikawadori-Imadegawa, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto, 602-8216
- Access: 
1~2 minutes by foot from Horikawa-Imadegawa Station (Bus stop)
10 minutes by foot from Imadegawa (Subway)
- Opening hours: AM10:00 ~ PM5:00 (11/1 ~ 2/28)
AM10:00 ~ PM6:00 (3/1 ~ 10/31)
- Tel:+81-75-451-9231

We hope this article gave you a snapshot into Japanese kimono culture and piqued your interest We are sure that you will be able to understand the beauty of kimono even more when you see and wear it in real life. Why not make memories by getting your favorite goods or making a unique kimono fabric?

If you would walk around in Kyoto while wearning kimono, check this out!

If you want to search for a unique kimono, check this link below!

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Mitsuya Kaede

Mitsuya Kaede

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