Kyoto-based fashion label Wazigen Shizukuya is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a new line named opus 9, giving us some new unorthodox kimono, leaving the traditional silk behind and using paper (!?) instead…..
Wrong image my friend, although I had the same image when I read the headline of their press release, but upon further reading things became clear..the paper they used is called kamico, which is paper treated with starch and rubbed and wrinkled until it is soft and flexible, this started as early as in the 14th century, which is a really long time ago. The first folks who wore clothes made out of this material were Buddhist priests who used it as robes and underwear, than later by the poor(ish) people as clothes and bedding because it was cheap….well due to inflation and some other things it has become a rather pricey product in our time and age. Nowadays kamico is still created the same way but the paper is sewn with hemp yarn and cotton yarn for extra strength.
Kamico (calling it paper would be the same as calling carbon fiber, plastic)has the advantages that it insulates and that it’s very light, which translates to highly comfy in modern English, actually a lot of kabuki costumes are made out of this material
A great disadvantage though is that these clothes aren’t washable which would upset your wife or mother, but they can withstand the rain, (not typhoons) and if due to a case of extreme clumsiness you tear it, you can repair it with kamico!
Okay enough bla bla let’s have a look, first up is the:
Zin parka Syoen
Material: Table – Japanese paper 100%, back – hemp 100%
Size: Free Size
Price: 160,000 yen + tax
Next up is the:
UKIYO SHINOGI – Hakama “Koboku”
Material: 100% paper (100% hemp only string)
Size: M ~ 2L range in tailoring of
Price: 280,000 yen + tax
And number three is:
Zin Parka “Karazishi”
Material: Table – 100% silk, back – hood lining and facing part hemp 100%, body back hemp 100%
Size: Free Size
Price: 140,000 yen + tax
Each product is carefully hand- made and the attention to detail is astonishing , they haven’t only focused on the looks but also on the wear-ability. These are custom made for one year only and therefore very exclusive.
I imagine myself wearing this on the red carpet ready to receive my grammy…oh yeah a man’s got to dream…
Let us know what you think!
Serge Roso JWS