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How is Matsuri Clothing Worn?

Art Credits: Emily Hampton

In order to understand how Matsuri garments are worn, the cats Eiji, Hitoshi and Miyuki will serve as models.

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Firstly, it is common to combine items together such as happi (半被) coat, white tabi (足袋) socks, and setta (雪駄) sandals. The happi is most commonly worn with a belt tied around the waist, like the white one that Eiji wears. Happi can be found in colors such as 

blue, red, black and more, though they were originally brown. The white tabi socks are thinner than jikatabi shoes and do not feature a rubber sole. They are paired with setta sandals that include leather soles for more grip.

Hitoshi wears a haragake (腹掛け) over a koikuchi (濃口) shirt, which is a tight-fitting shirt commonly paired with haragake aprons. The haragake wraps around his body and ties in the back like an apron. In addition, he wears jikatabi (地下足袋) shoes on his feet that would

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have rubber soles on the bottom to provide the wearer with more stability and grip. He also wears a blue hachimaki (鉢巻) around his head in the ねじり鉢巻, or twisted headband style (style 2 in the diagram below).

Ways to wear hachimaki (鉢巻)

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Lastly, Miyuki wears a blue and white yukata (浴衣) with a red obi (帯). Yukata is worn by both men and women and can be found in a variety of colors and patterns. While yukata for men are commonly found to be quite subdued and simplistic in color and design

and is similar to yukata worn at ryokan (旅館), or traditional Japanese inns, yukata worn by women for Matsuri tend to come in vibrant colors and floral patterns. In order to wear a yukata, the right side is wrapped around the body and then the left side. This is important because if wrapped the wrong way, it would be representative of how the deceased are dressed in yukata. In order to secure the fabric around the chest and is secured to the body with the obi sash.

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