Is It Okay To Wear A Kimono For Cosplay?

A kimono is a unique traditional Japanese dress which exhibits their cultural fashion that was derived from the Chinese garments worn during the Wu Dynasty from about the 8th to the 11th centuries.  So, basically, it is originated from the Chinese but it is now predominantly Japanese.

Is It Okay To Wear A Kimono For Cosplay? Yes, it is quite alright to wear kimonos and even yukatas if you happen to be playing a character at convention. However, you must do it right by wear wearing the correct costume and doing it as best you can.

How do you respectfully wear a kimono for cosplay?

In order to wear a kimono respectfully, you must first get all the necessary items to enable you to wear it properly. These include the Susoyoke and the Hada juban, which are commonly worn over normal clothes.

In addition, you must also wear the Koshi himo, which are used to tie up the najuban and the Kimono close. There is also the korin belt that is used instead of a third koshi himo used to hold the kimono collar in its proper place.

Furthermore, the date-jime, which secures the najuban and ties the kimono to the body before putting on the obi, must also be worn too. In most cases, you will obviously need one date-jime on the najuban itself and another on the kimono as well.

The obi is the larger outer sash or belt which is tied around the kimono that is used to complement the kimono. The tabi are ankle-high socks that you wear with traditional Japanese clothes too.

They are predominantly white, but can easily be found in other colours as well. The zori and geta are also another traditional Japanese wear that goes with this costume too.

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The steps of wearing the kimono correctly

Step 1

First, you must put on the tabi.

Step 2

Then put on the traditional Japanese undergarments, which are the hajuban and the susoyoke. While doing this, ensure that you do not tuck in the hajuban into the susoyoke or long johns.

Step 3

In this step, you are required to put on the najuban and tie it securely under the bust line with the use of a koshi himo. Then, pull all excess materials of the najuban towards the seams. To do this effectively, you have to have an erishin, which slides under the collar just to keep it stiff and also wrinkle-free too.

Step 4

Here, you are required to put on the kimono but don’t pull it too tight by aligning it with the back of the najuban collar.

Step 5

This step involves tieing up the kimono in place. You should make sure that the koshi himo is within reach to tie it down right over the belly button. Finally, tuck any excess length of the koshi himo into itself so that it does not hang out anywhere.

Step 6

Arrange the collars with the use of a third kimono or even the korin belt, before putting on the obi. It is really a very intricate and taxing process which you can only master with time and constant practice, but eventually, if you do this repeatedly, you are bound to get the hang of it. So, keep practising.

What other items of clothing can I wear to cosplay apart from the kimono?

Other items that you can wear to cosplay apart from the kimono are: the korin belt, koshi himo, najuban, erishin, susoyoke, hajuban, and the tabi, among many other items of clothing, which are of course all Japanese.

Is a kimono Japanese or Chinese?

A kimono is definitely Japanese but it has a Chinese origin from long ago.

Is it disrespectful to wear a kimono if you are not Japanese?

No, it is not, provided you do it correctly. This implies that you can use a kimono for cosplay whether you are Japanese or not as long as you do it according to recommended requirements.

Would wearing a kimono be cultural appropriation?

Yes, wearing a kimono is basically cultural appropriation since you can do so regardless of whether you are Japanese or someone of any nationality, provided you do it correctly. It is certainly cultural appropriation.

What are other examples of cultural appropriation?

Other common examples of cultural appropriation are: the Halloween and wearing of the kimono itself.

What is a good age to start cosplaying?

Basically, one is free to start cosplaying at any age. However, in plays that may have some sexual undertones or scenes, it is required that you should attain adulthood, which is from the age of at least 18 and above.

How do you choose what to cosplay?

Generally, you are given what to cosplay based on the character you depict the best. In other words, you are given a role if you are seen as a good depiction of the original character in the storyline.

Can a girl cosplay as a boy?

Yes, basically, anybody can play any role provided they seem a perfect rendition of the character concerned. Everything depends on the outcome and success of your performance during the auditions.

What should I do for my first cosplay?

As with everything else we may venture into, your first cosplay should concern learning and getting used to the idea of playing a strange role. It involves getting to master new assignments on stage, which can be effectively acquired by watching and learning from more experienced cosplayers.

Furthermore, it should also involve listening attentively as well as watching what others do when they are given any new or strange roles to play. Most importantly, it requires a lot of practice and seeking for candid opinions on your overall performance from other actors. In this way, you are likely to find subsequent cosplays very easy to execute.

What is the golden rule of cosplay?

There are things that you are not expected to say or do at cosplay which negate or contravene the entire ethics of the events. In order to be on the safe side, as well as to prevent the possibility of affecting others negatively, we shall look at some of these things.

  • You are required to, first and foremost, humble yourself. This involves being polite and respectful to others, which we generally say is a reciprocal thing, since by the measure you give out, so shall you be given in return.
  • Secondly, cosplay is no consent. This means that you must not under any circumstance endeavour to touch any cosplayer without seeking and getting their permission first. Similarly, you equally must not verbally abuse or sexually harass the players under any guise.
  • Always remember where you are and keep yourself in check of any misbehaviour. This you can effectively do by strictly obeying the rules binding on attendance at cosplays.
  • You are at all times required to respect anybody’s space, as much as they would yours too. This involves staging cosplays at places or scenes where you are not likely to offend anyone or interfere with the traffic too. Always be respectful and courteous by not invading personal or private spaces.
  • In cosplays,  there is no killjoys.  This means that you should never do that which you are likely to regret afterwards. It includes not saying to anyone something offensive. Do not say to a cosplayer that his/her cosplay is wrong, as well as say anything that relates to race or skin colour, shape or gender.
  • Though cosplays can be enjoyed by everybody and are acted primarily by adults, but the major target are children.
  • You should not endeavour to make comparisons at cosplays, especially with other cosplayers.
  • Never make any attempt to enquire who a cosplayer is supposed to be in a play. It is very discourteous to do so.
  • Finally, you should neither touch the cosplayers nor take pictures at cosplays without seeking and getting permission first. If you can’t get it, let it slide and bear the situation as best you can.

What you should never say to a cosplayer.

Never say to a cosplayer whether s/he are not the right colour, race, gender, build or humour. In addition, do not go all out to enquire from them which characters they are supposed to be or depict in the cosplay. Do not also make any verbal comparison of the players too.

How much money do you need to cosplay?

How much money you need to cosplay will depend on a lot of things ranging from the cost of the costume, number of cosplayers, venue of the event, other supportive staff and a host of other factors too.

However, in order to give you a general idea, you may need to spend about 101 dollars up to about 600 dollars or even much more than that in some cases. Everything depends on your arrangements and what you need.

Is It Okay To Wear A Kimono For Cosplay- Conclusion

To summarize everything, anyone can cosplay and depict the character they are given provided they do their best to give the correct rendition. Though the whole endeavour may have a Japanese theme, non-Japanese can also participate as much as is possible too. All you really need is constant practice and more practice.

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