Hello from Yuka.
on April 9th, there was a small event in the old town area close to our office.
This is the old house the event was held:
There is an event circle called `Kimono de sampo' (Enjoy taking a walk in kimono),
and as one of the event, they had a talk event in this Tanaka House.
Here is the posting from the event:
Some of the kimono and obi matching from Mugi's Kimono World (http://mugi-kimono-world.tumblr.com/) have been displayed also in the room of this House.
The old kimono looked great in the traditional old house with old furniture as Kaidan-dansu (step-chest).
There were three speakers including me- I was asked to speak about doing business with customers from abroad. The one wearing pink tsumugi kimono and dark blue obi sitting in front is me.
Actually, most people do not know there are so many people in the world who love kimono and Japanese textiles. I was happy to tell about our customers- I told about collctors, wearers and also people who use them as materials. I told about our unforgettable encounters throught the net-uniqute uchikake collector, meisen collector and also there were customers who collected war motif kimono (war motif kimono are not know widely in Japan, actually only few people know about the exixtence of war motif kimono). I also showed some photos of our customer wearig her favorite haoris sent from Ichiroya-I thought her wonderful smile could tell more than my words about our business. She kindly gave us the permission to show her photos. Also one of our customer (a professional desighner and tailor) permitted us to show her beautiful work using kimono fabrics, so I showed the photos of her jackets, scarves and other outfit.
The people were so impressed and looked them with great interest!
The message I wanted to give was, how much things we learned from these years (since 2000) from our customers from abroad. It was unexpected to find many kimono and Japanese textile fans all over the world and the most impressive words we heard from customers from abroad was `I will give the kimono a good new home'. I find the similer message again and again and each time the words make us so moved. Because of the change of life style, old things are tend to be forgotten and abandoned here but many customers from abroad find the beauty and value of them and are giving them new homes. The listeners seemed to be surprised to hear we were sending kimono to so many countries. I was happy to introduce such information which seemd so fresh for everyone.
There were about 30 people, More than half of them were in kimono.
The another speakers were Yorihiro Hamuro who runs the company called Wa no Kokoro(Heart of Japan) the former name was Wa no Suteki and plans varioius activities based on Japanese culture.He told about his activities with young people and the future of Japanese culture.
The another speaker was Kyoko Shiota(she used to be our customer too) who also plans interesting event with other kimono lovers. She is a charming (very pretty) lady and she showed the very wise hint of kimono wearing. Her information was so practical and women there were listening with great curiosity!
After the talk, some of the paticipants stood up to show their kimono they are wearing. Then there was a small concert of Hauta, a kind of traditional ballad sung with shamisen, Japanese string instrument), the player taught us some verses and we sung together. It was really at-home and friendly atmosphere.
The photo on top is me, looking a bit tired after the talk. I was wearing Yuki tsumugi kimono with a blue obi with tulips and birds. The obi design was from vintage dyed obi-Mugi took the design and arranged different colors. The obi is much better than it looks in this photo(sorry, I messed up after the talk). It became my unforgettable day-giving a talk and also wearing this obi for the first time. The obi was made in Ichiroya, Tondabayashi.