When you watch Japanese anime, you can see many characters wearing kimono. Currently, not many people wear kimono on a daily basis in Japan, yet it is often worn in the anime worlds. That's because the stories are set in the old days and in the fantasy worlds. Let us introduce some particularly popular anime characters in kimono.
Why do Characters Wearing Kimono Appear in Anime?
In modern Japan, not many people wear kimono on a daily basis. Yet why there are anime characters in kimono? There are two possible reasons.
The Anime are Set in the Old Period
Kimono is a Japanese heritage costume that was born over 1000 years ago. It was generally worn until around 70 years ago when the Western lifestyle took root. Most samurai and ninjas have been wearing kimono for over 100 years, so most of the characters in those anime wear kimono.
Anime Dealing with Traditional Culture
Traditional culture is often done in kimono, so even in the modern times, the main characters are often wearing kimono. Representative works include the story of the competition karuta (かるた poem card matching game), "Chihayafuru" (ちはやふる), and the story of the rakugo (traditional solo comedic story-telling) artists, "Showa Rakugo Shinchu" (昭和落語心中). Also, in the case of fantasy works, kimono characters may appear as well.
Female Characters in Kimono
Let's take a look at what kind of characters are out there and refer to the cosplay figure.
"Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba" (鬼滅の刃): KAMADO Nezuko (竈門禰豆子)
The popular anime "Demon Slay: Kimetsu no Yaiba" is set in Japan about 100 years ago. KAMADO Nezuko, the younger sister of the main character, KAMADO Tanjiro, wears a pink kimono and black haori.
"Sakura Wars" (サクラ大戦): SHINGUJI Sakura (真宮寺さくら)
Adventure game "Sakura Wars" released in 1996. Sakura, the main character, is wearing a hakama, a uniform for a Japanese schoolgirl about 100 years ago.
"Rurouni Kenshin" AKA "Samurai X" (るろうに剣心): KAMIYA Kaoru (神谷薫)
Kaoru Kamiya, the heroine of "Rurouni Kenshin," is also impressive in her hakama appearance. The hakama is easier to move than a kimono, so Kaoru, who teaches swordsmanship, seems to have liked wearing it.
Male Characters in Kimono
"Gintama" (銀魂): SAKATA Gintoki (坂田銀時)
"Gintama" is set in Japan nearly 150 years ago. The protagonist, SAKATA Gintoki, wears a white kimono through one arm and wears it like a haori (jacket). He wears a kimono over a black jersey, but in truth, no one ever wears a kimono like this in Japan.
"Hozuki's Coolheadedness" (鬼灯の冷徹): Hozuki
Most of the characters in the anime "Hozuki no Reitetsu", which set in hell, are in kimonos. The main character, Hozuki, wears a kimono with a red line on a black background. In modern times, black kimono is often worn at ceremonial occasions.
"BLEACH": KUROSAKI Ichigo (黒崎一護)
The protagonist, KUROSAKI Ichigo, who became a Shinigami (soul reaper) to defeat evil spirits, wears a black kimono. Even in the West, the grim reaper seems to have this color because it wears a black cloak as well.
Anime Characters' Kimono Colours
Many male characters have calm colors such as black, gray, and vermilion, and many female characters have bright colours such as pink and yellow. Please check the meaning of kimono by color from the link below.
Where can I Buy Anime Characters' Kimono?
Available at online shop. Known anime characters are also popular as cosplay, so some stores even ship overseas.
How Much does an Anime Character's Kimono Cost?
Real kimono is rather expensive, but when it comes to kimono for cosplay, not so much. It is priced at 3,000 to 4,000 yen including wigs and accessories. They are also sold at major online shipping sites, so let's search and find out. Also, if you are interested, please try making your own kimono!