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Kimono Style: Edo Traditions to Modern Design, The John C. Weber Collection

Bincsik, Monika, with contributions by Karen Van Godtsenhoven and Arai Masanao
176 pages
167 illustrations
8.5 x 11.2 in.
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Japan’s engagement with Western clothing, culture, and art in the mid-nineteenth century transformed the traditional kimono and began a cross-cultural sartorial dialogue that continues to this day. This publication explores the kimono’s fascinating modern history and its notable influence on Western fashion. Initially signaling the wearer’s social position, marital status, age, and wealth, older kimono designs gave way to the demands of modernized and democratized twentieth-century lifestyles as well as the preferences of the emancipated “new woman.” Conversely, inspiration from the kimono’s silhouette liberated Western designers such as Paul Poiret and Madeline Vionnet from traditional European tailoring. Juxtaposing never-before-published Japanese textiles from the John C. Weber Collection with Western couture, this book places the kimono on the stage of global fashion history.

Robe (Kosode) with Shells and Sea Grasses 
, Embroidery and gold leaf on plain-weave silk patterned with warp floats, Japan
early 17th century
“A Lovely Garland” (Tamakazura), from The Tale of Genji, Tosa Mitsuyoshi 土佐光吉  Japanese, Album leaves mounted as a pair of hanging scrolls; ink, gold, silver, and color on paper, Japan
Tosa Mitsuyoshi 土佐光吉
Konoe Sakihisa 近衛前久
early 17th century
Scenes in and around the Capital, Pair of six-panel folding screens; ink, color, gold, and gold leaf on paper, Japan
17th century
Woman's Overrobe (Uchikake) with Books and Mandarin Orange Branches, Embroidery in silk and metallic thread; appliqué of resist-dyed (shibori) silk fabrics on silk satin damask, Japan
first half of the 19th century
Outer Robe (Uchikake) with Scenes of Filial Piety, Crepe silk with paste-resist dyeing and silk- and gold-thread embroidery, Japan
late 18th–early 19th century
Order Book of Kosode Patterns (Chūmon no hiinagata/Hiinagata chūmon chō)

, Imura Katsukichi  Japanese, Woodblock-printed book; ink on paper, Japan
Imura Katsukichi
Court Ladies Sewing Western Clothing  (Jokan yōfuku saihō no zu), Yōshū (Hashimoto) Chikanobu  Japanese, Triptych of woodblock prints (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper, Japan
Yōshū (Hashimoto) Chikanobu
August 23rd, 1887
Imported Silk Reeling Machine at Tsukiji in Tokyo, Utagawa Yoshitora  Japanese, Triptych of woodblock prints; ink and color on paper, Japan
Utagawa Yoshitora
4th month, 1872
Concert of European Music (Ōshū kangengaku gassō no zu), Yōshū (Hashimoto) Chikanobu  Japanese, Triptych of woodblock prints; ink and color on paper, Japan
Yōshū (Hashimoto) Chikanobu
Court Lady’s Garment (Kosode) with Swallows and Bells on Blossoming Cherry Tree, Silk crepe (chirimen) with silk embroidery and couched gold thread, Japan
mid-19th century
"Arrow of Gold", Paul Poiret  French, silk, metallic thread, French
Paul Poiret
Coat, Iida & Co./Takashimaya  Japanese, silk, Japanese
Iida & Co./Takashimaya
ca. 1900
Opera coat, House of Paquin  French, silk, French
House of Paquin
Jeanne Paquin
"Paris", Paul Poiret  French, silk, wool, metallic thread, French
Paul Poiret
Dress, House of Vionnet  French, silk, French
House of Vionnet
Madeleine Vionnet
Evening dress, Callot Soeurs  French, silk, metal, French
Callot Soeurs
fall/winter 1928–29
"UKIYOE", Hanae Mori  French, silk, glass, Japanese
Hanae Mori
Hanae Mori
fall/winter 1983–84
"Seashell", Miyake Design Studio  Japanese, cotton, nylon, linen, Japanese
Miyake Design Studio
Issey Miyake
spring/summer 1985
Kit, Miyake Design Studio  Japanese, cotton, nylon, polyurethane, Japanese
Multiple artists/makers
spring/summer 1999
Sweater, Comme des Garçons  Japanese, wool, Japanese
Comme des Garçons
Rei Kawakubo
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Bincsik, Mónika, Karen Van Godtsenhoven, and Arai Masanao, eds. 2022. Kimono Style: Edo Traditions to Modern Design: The John C. Weber Collection. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.