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7 Common Mistakes When Wearing Kimono

When wearing a kimono, there are a few common mistakes that people might make. Here are five of them:

  1. Incorrect Obi (Belt) Tying: One of the most common mistakes is tying the obi incorrectly. The obi should be wrapped snuggly around the waist in a style best suited to the obi itself with the proper accessories for that particular style of obi. More so, obi when worn should be on the back of a person and never worn with the obi tied in the front. Both men and women wear their obi with the knot in the back.

  2. Using The Obi To Secure The Kimono: The obi does not hold or secure the kimono on a person's body. Hidden cords known as "himo" are used to tie a kimono onto a person's body. Obi are decorative in nature and have no function other than to look nice when worn.

  3. Incorrect Kimono & Obi Formalities: Kimono and obi have specific pairings according to formality and function. For example, an informal yukata should not be worn with a highly formal fukuro obi. Kimono accessories such as obijime also have their own formalities and should be coordinated with care. Formal accessories should go with formal kimono and so on.

  4. Uneven Hemline: The hemline of the kimono should be even and parallel to the floor when worn. Uneven or crooked hemlines can create an unbalanced look. It's important to ensure that the kimono is properly aligned and adjusted to maintain a straight and elegant appearance for any kind of kimono, or any gender-wearing kimono.

  5. Incorrect Collar Folding: The collar of a kimono, known as "eri," should be folded evenly and neatly. The collars should align properly and not be wrinkled or twisted. Properly folded collars contribute to the overall polished look of the kimono. Eri-shin are plastic collar stiffeners worn inside of kimono collars to help give them a clean crisp look.

  6. Inappropriate Accessorizing: It's essential to choose appropriate accessories when wearing a kimono. Avoid using accessories that clash with the traditional aesthetic and formalities. Remember that there are many types of kimono worn by any gender, and each kind of kimono has its own expressed formality.

  7. Not Wearing Socks: When wearing kimono it is considered impolite to show bare feet. The safest and most polite option for socks is to wear plain white tabi socks free of discolorations when wearing kimono with zori or geta.

These are just a few common mistakes when wearing a kimono, and it's always helpful to consult an expert or follow instructional resources to ensure that you wear it correctly and with respect to its cultural significance.

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