Category Archives: japanese wedding

Brides Around the World – Part 1 Japan

Do you long  for a bit of the Far East?  Are you in love with simplicity, serenity, and stately elegance?  The traditional dress of the Japanese bride might be for you.

Most of us know that the traditional women’s dress of Japan is called the “kimono.” And, though  they aren’t as commonly worn as they used to be, one of the places you’re still sure to see kimono is at a Japanese wedding. Though the modern bride will often wear more than three outfits throughout her wedding day, the traditional wedding kimono, called an uchikake, is almost certain to be one of the ensembles worn..

The uchikake is  a robe-like dress that used to be the common dress of women in the samurai (warrior) class. Uchikake have long rounded sleeves that swing elegantly off of the arm, and a longer hemline than most other kimono styles. The hem is also padded, which helps the uchikake to form a train behind the wearer. It is worn open, like a long coat, over a pale under-kimono (called kakeshita). In ancient times, there would have actually been five or more under-kimono beneath the uchikake. Today, some uchikake mimic this style with thin strips of fabric trimming the edges.

In the traditional religion of Japan, Shinto, white is a symbol of purity. Because of this, the uchikake is most often white, as is the kakeshita, or under-kimono, and it’s obi, or sash. The hair is also wrapped in a traditional white headpiece, known as the tsunokakushi..

But tucked into this tsunokakushi (wedding headpiece) is by far my favorite part of the traditional Japanese wedding ensemble–the kanzashi.

Kanzashi are traditional Japanese hair ornaments.  They, like kimono, come in a wide variety of styles. The wedding kanzashi are usually a golden-yellow color, and very ornate. Originally made of tortoise-shell or metal, today they are most often created from molded plastic. The detail is stunning and often includes symbolic elements such as cranes, pine branches, and turtles, all symbolic of longevity.

Western brides might consider a less formal tsumami (“folded fabric”) kanzashi to accent their hair, or a monochromatic silk brocade for their gown. Perhaps an up-do with a traditional Japanese flair might compliment an ornate western dress. Or an actual kimono–either white or brightly colored–might be to the bride’s fancy.  The Japanese bride is stately and graceful, and provides much to inspire her western sisters.  Kitty Kanzashi designs and creates some of the most amazing Kanzashi flowers on the market.

This post brought to you by Michelle Greenwood of Greenwood Occasions.

Henna Daisy Wedding Spoon - Made to Order

Greenwood Occasions Wedding Spoons

Isn’t her work stunning???  I see a wonderful tradition starting 🙂

Krissy

Make Believe’N

>Meet Kitty of KittyKanzashi

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Tsumami Hana Kanzashi – Folded Fabric Flower Hair Ornaments
Aren’t you always looking for something unique?  The one little touch that expresses who you are while being beautiful and unexpected.  Kanzashi ornaments are the perfect touch for anyone that has a love of Japanese culture and artwork.  Kitty designs and creates some of the most spectacular pieces I have ever seen!!!  Feel confident that if you love it even a little Kitty has put a tone of love into making the piece.  I think this is a good luck charm.
Kiru Rise-Japanese Hair Ornament-Bridal Tiara(Tsumami Kanzashi)
Kiru Rise Japanese Kanzashi Ornament

Each hair clip and/or ornament can be created in any color or combination of colors.  Kitty loves creating works of Kanzashi art for any reason!!!

Candy Amore-Kanzashi inspired hairband and buttonhole flower
Candy Amore
Blue Beach-Kanzashi inspired hairclip
Blue Beach Kanzashi Hair Clip
From Kitty:
I’m a struggling trainee accountant who is making ends meet with her kanzashi.  

My life (and my flat) is full of all things Japanese and as an avid collector and wearer of kimono one can not complete an outfit without a kanzashi.  However I just couldn’t find the kanzashi I wanted so I began to make them and soon they began to fill every space I had remaining.  

After giving a few of my kanzashi away as gifts to my friends and being made redundant from my work, I decided that rather then waiting for the right job to turn up, I would turn my hobby into my work.  Thus Kitty Kanzashi was born.

Apart from day dreaming about kanzashi and kimono, I enjoy cooking!  Whether it is cakes or stews, there is nothing more relaxing then taking your frustrations out on some food especially if I am making bread which is my mini food project at the moment.
And for my geeky side, I play computer games on my PS3 and watch anime.

Well Kitty I personally love your work and look forward to what you have up your beautiful Kimono sleeve!

Find Kitty here: