Ashikaga is famous for its silk weaving industry. According to the newspaper, selected citizens (I suppose those who owned Ashikaga kimono) were asked to wear kimono and walk around the town while they did their shopping or visited temples and museums that were open to the public.
Often when I am off and about with my camera I come across cute children or lovely ladies in their kimono, but it is not like you can just point and snap away... It seems a little rude to just photograph... but stopping the person and getting permission seems awkward also. This day, the understanding was that everyone wearing kimono was a photo opportunity so I took pictures to my heart's content.
Young girls stopping to sample and buy large rice crackers.
Quite a few foreigners were out enjoying the chance to wear kimono.
Even the men were dressed up in their kimono and wooden geta sandals. This man with his muffler and hat looked like a picture out of a history book.
Speaking of history, Ashikaga has the oldest school in Japan so Tetsu and I enjoyed the "campus" and a look at the old, purely Japanese style school. The front gate.
Ginkgo leaves carpeted the grounds.
The thatch roof school.
Okay... back to kimono. I caught this family as they were coming out of a temple and I did ask if I could take their picture. Look at those children!! Aren't they the dearest things?! You won't see many little boys who would even be willing to get dressed up in this old style kimono...
I took this shot just so you could see the individual fashion sense of the kimono wearers. On the right is a woman wearing traditional foot wear with her kimono. On the left, the lady is wearing the kimono in the traditional way but she has combined the kimono with fashionable boots. And the lady in the middle has her classy boots and is wearing her kimono pulled way up in a flippant, modern style!
With these girls, anything goes! A knitted beret, a crocheted muffler and head band. But actually all the boots and hats really set off the kimono quite well I thought. A new fashion boom in the making!