May 11, 2014

Mother's Day Shopping

Happy Mother's Day! Today, I was treated with a kimono shopping trip in Seattle - obviously my boy's know what makes me happy, haha! Today happened to be the last day of the current Kyoto Art & Antiques sale (a warehouse sale that occurs twice a year in Seattle).

The haori selection was huge, and there were plenty of very nice vintage kimono and cheap prices, including several rare vintage black furisode.

This vintage black furisode is one I liked the most, because it had sections of grey near the shoulders. The kimono to the right is another black kimono that is kakeshita/hikizuri length. The most expensive vintage furisode I saw were around $210, wow! If I didn't spot a grey hair on my head the other day, I'd seriously consider saving up for one. People in the Seattle area, start saving up now! The next sale is in September (either Sept. 23rd or 25th, sorry I don't remember! You can sign up on their website to be notified of their upcoming sales) and many of these really nice ones will likely still be available then.

Sorry, blurry picture - Another vintage furisode. The rich purple color is so dreamy, this terrible picture doesn't do it justice.

This is the kimono that I was drooling over, a rich chirimen bingata houmongi. It was a large size, and boldly colored. Want!

There were only a few obi, this one was very fine quality.

Unfortunately, I have been very strict with my money, so no splurging for me. Here are some other things they had that caught my eye:

An ikou kimono stand.

A mikoshi.

Tall byoubu screen with sensu papers.

Massive tansu, and I mean MASSIVE. That tag said it is made of hinoki, so I am guessing this is a mizuya dansu for kitchen wares. I am not an expert, so that is just my guess.

A kyodai tansu. I remember that recently a couple of people on some Facebook groups were looking for kyodai tansu like this. The price tag was $410, which is typical for similar sized vintage kyodai tansu online.

An Ichimatsu ningyou. She is in poor shape, and I sort of wanted to rescue her! However, I'm currently working on my own Ichimatsu doll project, so I had to refrain myself.

Probably the most unique tansu I've personally seen! With decorative sliding panels and attached hanging scales. Perhaps a specific type of merchant tansu? I have no clue, I can't find a similar one in an internet search.

The biggest new stock addition I noticed this time around were boxes upon boxes of brand new kimono bolts! Most of them were wool kimono bolts, with a few tsukesage kimono bolts mixed in. This is where I picked out my Mother's Day gifts!

I picked out two komon kimono bolts of light-weight wool, and a plain white ro han'eri for summer. Most of the wool bolts were typical scratchy tartan plaids and some kasuri, but I picked these two since they were nicer komon patterns and exceptionally soft. I was honestly surprised they were wool until I read the fabric info when I unrolled the bolts.

 I typically try to avoid small patterns like the tiny flower dots, but the tsuzumi drums are just too cute! Now I just need to get the time and motivation to sew them into kimono! 

May 02, 2014

Kodomo no Hi, 2014

Happy Children's Day!!!

Well, not quite yet~ Kodomo no Hi, Children's Day, is this coming Monday, May 5th. For the last couple of days we've had abnormally nice weather, but from the weekend onward is supposed to be lots of rain. So, I decided to celebrate Kodomo no Hi early with just me and baby boy by having a picnic.

For our Kodomo no Hi picnic, we decided to check out the historic Wagner estate and Lakewold Gardens. They just happened to be doing a MayFest celebration until Mother's Day, and had some ikebana and bonsai on display.

The gardens are lovely, but Bryan was fascinated by the statues scattered around.

A pair of dog statues were his favorite.

Such a peaceful setting!
Picnic time! He was very excited for the picnic. He has a bit of a dinosaur theme going on, with his dino yukata, dinosaur chopsticks, sandwich cut into dinosaur shapes, and a dinosaur plushie.

For my lunch, I made a cold soba noodle salad using a recipe from Just One Cookbook. It was very good!

He likes playing with his chopsticks~ "ta-da! I did it!"

For those in the Seattle area, there are still some upcoming Kodomo no Hi celebrations to attend:
This Sunday, May 4th, there will be a Kodomo no Hi festival at the Japanese Cultural & Community Center of Washington State <-- click the link for details. Lost of crafts, activities, and performances for the kids. We attended in 2012, but Bryan was still too young to participate much.

Then, later in the month will be another Children's Day celebration at Seattle Japanese Garden, May 26th. We may try to attend for the first time this year.

Have a happy Children's Day!