Dragon Painted Kimono
This unique men’s haori kimono is from the late 19th century Japan. The material and design imply that it is for formal occasions, but since it doesn’t have a family crest on it, it could be worn to parties and friends’ wedding ceremonies. If it did have a family crest, it would be specifically for celebrations and occasions important to the wearer.
The intricate painted dragon would be typically worn as the lining, with the everyday and less detailed light blue and gray silk as the outside. During the Edo period (1603-1868), there was an influx of wealth to the lower class, but there were still strict rules about how they were allowed to dress and express wealth. To get around this, beautiful designs would be hidden on the lining of otherwise plain haori.
While the outer layer is plain with only minor swirls painted on the sleeves, the lining is beautifully detailed. This hand-painted Japanese kimono depicts monochromatic swirls behind a dragon holding a pearl on the interior lining. In Japanese culture, pearls are thought to be made from the tears of mythical creatures such as mermaids and angels, giving them magical powers. They can also symbolize luck, wisdom, and protection. Dragons are typically seen as having masculine energy, with the phoenix being its feminine counterpart. Dragons were even thought to be the ancestors of the first emperor of Japan, therefore symbolizing power and royalty.
Circa: Late 19th Century
Dimensions: 48 1/2" Length, 51" Sleeve to Sleeve
Inventory number: WR3965