Last updated: August 23, 2021

The kimono for women is a garment with tradition. It originated in Japan and is now popular all over the world. This is probably because hardly any other garment combines femininity and style as elegantly as the kimono. While in the West it is mainly known from nightwear, the kimono has a lot more to offer.

In the following guide, you will learn what is important when buying a kimono and what you should look out for. You will also find answers to the most important questions and valuable styling tips for your perfect kimono look.




The Best Women's Kimono: Our Picks

Buying criteria: What you should look for when buying kimonos

Kimonos are becoming more and more popular and the selection is also becoming more and more diverse. To help you find the perfect kimono for you, we have compiled the following buying criteria to assist you in your selection. In addition to personal taste, a few other factors are also important.

These are the following buying criteria:

  • Material
  • Colour
  • Style
  • Fit

In the following sections you will learn in detail what to look for when buying kimonos.

Material

While traditional Japanese kimonos were still made of heavy fabrics, most kimonos today are known for thin and light fabrics. However, the choice of fabrics is by no means small.

Kimonos are particularly popular as a kind of modern dressing gown, which is why shiny satin fabrics, viscose or silk are very popular choices. Somewhat more suitable for everyday wear are kimonos made of cotton. These are usually also made of very thin fabric and can be combined with many outfits.

The chiffon or lace versions are also suitable for combining with an evening dress and formal occasions. Kimonos that reach to the hips offer a chic and modern alternative to the bolero.

Overall, mainly light, flowing fabrics are used, which makes the kimono a feel-good garment. Nevertheless, the variety of materials allows you to find a suitable kimono for every occasion.

Colour

The classic variant in nightwear for women is the plain-coloured kimono made of silk. Black, white or red shiny kimonos are the simple but elegant standard variant. Often, however, nude or pastel shades are chosen, which look elegant and seductive at the same time.

Kimonos can be combined in a variety of ways and can enhance any outfit as a colourful splash of colour or as a simple addition. Pastel colours such as mint or rosé look rather girlish and innocent, while black in combination with a nude kimono is a modern business look, for example for a business dinner.

Of course, there is also a wide range of bright and gaudy colours that are particularly suitable for the summer months. Often the colourful embroidery and patterns on the kimonos are based on traditional Japanese robes and spread an Asian flair.

Style

Originally, the long robes were worn hundreds of years ago in Japan for tea ceremonies. Today, in the West, they are mainly a popular nightwear item for ladies, which are comfortable and at the same time elegant and feminine.

The long, traditional kimonos have evolved over time into, as a rule, knee-length garments for ladies. In the meantime, however, there are also variants that only reach down to the hips and show influences of the cardigan.

The modern kimono sits loosely, flatters every figure and emphasises the female curves, especially when the belt is tied around the waist. The loose cut makes the kimono an all-rounder. Depending on the material and colour, it is suitable for formal occasions, as nightwear, for the beach or casually in everyday life.

Fit

The basic shape of the kimono is characterised by a classic T-shape with very wide sleeves that reach at least to the elbows. Traditional robes reach to the floor. Modern kimonos are usually about knee-length and made of much lighter fabrics. There are also some kimonos that only reach to the hips. These are meant to be combined with other garments.

All kimonos have a dress-like cut and are open at the front. Usually, a belt can also be tied around the waist.

Because kimonos are so loose-fitting, they are suitable for every figure. Whether slim figure or feminine curves: the kimono always conjures up a beautiful silhouette. With the large selection of different lengths and materials, there is something for every body type.

Kimonos for women: The most important questions answered

To clear up any uncertainties, we have compiled the most important questions and answers on the subject of kimonos for women below. Here you will find all the information you should take into account when making your purchase decision.

What is a kimono?

A kimono is a caftan-like garment that originated in Japan. Hundreds of years ago, the robes were worn mainly for traditional tea ceremonies. Today they are also very popular in the West, albeit somewhat modified and more modern.

Visually, the kimono is reminiscent of a kind of poncho or light dressing gown. The Asian design usually remains at the core. Characteristic features are the loose fit and the wide sleeves. The traditional robes reach down to the floor. The modern versions, on the other hand, are made of thin, flowing fabrics that hug the skin and reach only to the knees or hips.

The kimono is very versatile, the jacket-like garment can be combined with numerous looks and is also a popular garment in nightwear for women.

In which styles are kimonos for ladies available?

The variety of kimonos is very large. Here is an overview of the most important types of kimonos with a brief description for you:

  • Kimono as a dressing gown: Probably the most popular variant are kimonos as night gowns or dressing gowns. These are usually made of light, shiny satin and cling comfortably to the skin. These half-length models usually reach to the knees or just above the bottom and are very comfortable.
  • Kimono for everyday wear: Kim onos for everyday wear are usually made of cotton and are similar in cut to cardigans. Unlike night robes, they usually only reach to the hips. They come in many different patterns, with fringes and embellishments and can be combined in many different ways. They can enhance your outfit as an eye-catcher or complement it in plain shades.
  • Kimono for the beach: In the summer months, kimonos with light fabrics are ideal because they allow plenty of air to reach the skin. Both long and short kimonos are a chic alternative to a dress. You can simply fold the kimono over and tie it at the waist with a fabric belt. A bright orange or red colour is particularly suitable.
  • Kimono for formal occasions: The models made of lace or chiffon are ideally suited to be combined with an elegant evening dress. Kimonos are a noble alternative to the classic bolero or fabric jacket. The light fabrics not only provide a little warmth when it gets too cold in the dress, but also round off the elegant outfit.
  • The traditionalkimono: The traditional version is characterised by heavier fabrics that reach down to the floor. Usually, the Japanese robes are decorated with Asian patterns and embroidery. The classic robes still stand for femininity, elegance and a sense of style.

The decision on which type of kimono you need should mainly depend on the occasion for which you need the kimono. Because the kimono is so versatile, it can be used in many different ways.

How can I tell if my kimono fits well?

Basically, there is not much to consider when it comes to fit and size, as kimonos tend to sit loosely on the body. Nevertheless, we have some tips to help you find the perfect kimono for your body type.

If you are a little shorter, you should avoid the floor-length gowns as they will compress your figure. The waist-high kimonos are more suitable here. If you are a little taller, calf-length kimonos are particularly suitable.

Because kimonos are so loose-fitting, they are not very figure-hugging. If you want to counteract this, simply wear a loose-fitting fabric belt, which comes with most kimonos, around your waist. If, on the other hand, you are more strongly built, then it is best to wear only slim-fitting clothing under the kimono jacket.

How do I care for and clean my kimono?

The best way to wash and care for your kimono depends, of course, on the material of the kimono. So be sure to follow the care instructions on the product label. The following list also contains further cleaning instructions:

  • If the kimono has fringes or tassels sewn on, it should only be washed in a laundry net.
  • Satin kimonos can be washed at 30 degrees on the delicate cycle with a mild detergent, but better without fabric softener.
  • Kimonos made of viscose should be washed at a maximum of 40 degrees on the gentle cycle with a mild detergent.
  • When drying, avoid direct sunlight but dry in the open air.

With fabrics such as silk or satin, you should always be a little more careful when washing than with cotton, for example. If you follow these tips, however, you should have no problems with care and cleaning.

Styling tips for kimonos: How to achieve the perfect kimono look

  1. The kimono can be combined with many items of clothing and is suitable for every body type.
  2. Combine it with jeans and boots for a casual look. Cloth trousers or shorts are just as suitable.
  3. A kimono combined with a long blouse and tights creates an elegant look that can be rounded off with high heels and accessories.
  4. In summer, a kimono as an alternative to a dress with discreet wedge sandals is enough to enjoy the warm temperatures.

Conclusion

The traditional kimono from Japan is a real all-rounder in modern times, suitable for every figure type and for almost every occasion. Hardly any other garment can score with so much changeability and adaptability. Whether as a night dress or as an elegant addition to an evening gown, you can always find a suitable kimono.

The diversity of kimonos for women is reflected in both the choice of colours and materials. The spectrum ranges from simple and comfortable to gaudy and trendy. Kimonos are thus an alternative to the cardigan, the dress and even the bathrobe at the same time.

(Image source: unsplash.com/ Bruno Aguirre)

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