September 29, 2013

Brand New Zouri

For me, I think one of the bigger holes in my kimono collection are non-formal zouri. I have a few pairs of nice formal zouri, one pair of summer zouri, and a ton of geta of all types, but not really any zouri for less formal ensembles.

Now I found two new pairs of zouri in my local second hand shops! I kind of feel like I struck gold!

The blue pair only have minor scuffs from the surrounding knickknacks at the antique store I found them in. The hanao are really tight, and no wear on the bottoms, I don't believe either pair have been worn except perhaps indoors. The orange pair is slightly glittery, and is labeled Kinwashi-in (キンワシ印), a famous brand of zouri makers! I think I got a pretty good deal for nice quality zouri for only $10!

Finding zouri for me is a big deal! I'm sort of type of collector in this hobby, in that I rarely, if ever, buy things online. To my memory, the only kimono items I've ever bought online are my husband's and my wedding kimono sets, and a heko obi for my son. Everything else is stuff I've hunted for locally in secondhand shops or have been gifted to me, or handmade by myself. Kimono is an expensive hobby, so I am happy, and lucky, to be able to give a second life to secondhand items.

This is a good shopping season for kimono related items in secondhand shops, since Halloween is around the corner. Thrift stores and antique shops are putting out things that can be used for Halloween costumes, included cultural clothing and accessories. I have seen several yukata in the last few weeks, but have passed them up due to staining or size. I did pick up a new pair of geta, because they were also unworn condition and had cream colored hanao (red is sooo common!). I didn't think to check the size before I bought them, since any standard small size hakimono will fit me, but these turned out to be 25.5cm, and are way too big on my feet!

Large geta and zouri are difficult to find, so I was surprised. I know that not all areas have decent secondhand shops, but if you do, this may be a good time of year for going treasure hunting. Persistence is my advice, as most trips don't yield any treasures. Aside from the secondhand costume racks, yukata and kimono can sometimes be found with the bathrobes, and I've found many obi hanging with the table linens. Good luck, and happy treasure hunting!


  1. I'm sooo jealous you find kimono items in secondhand-shops... I only know of one secondhand-shop in my area, and I haven't seen anything kimono-related there...

    1. I've heard many people have the same problem, either not many or any second hand shops, or not a very ethnically diverse population who donate used items to those shops.