Japan National Costumes Inspired by Nature

Guide to Japanese national costume

Event schedule details

Saturday 17 & Sunday 18 June


Event location details

Point 21 on map

Princes Gardens

Japan House London, working together with the Japan Society, brings you an introduction to two different types of kimono through activity sheets, a design competition and a ‘trying on’ area. Uchikake are a type of outer kimono worn on formal occasions in Japan, for example by brides on their wedding day. They are worn as the very top layer, above other garments, like a coat, and the images and patterns that decorate them are often inspired by the natural world and carry particular meanings.

At the Festival, children can learn about these different natural elements and their meanings, have a go at colouring in an uchikake, or take it one step further and enter a competition to design their own. Lightweight, casual and often worn to festivals in the summer, yukata are completely different to uchikake. They are tied by a simple obi or sash, and are much easier to put on than a more formal kimono, which usually requires a professional dresser. A this year’s Festival, we invite you to try on a yukata or a festival jacket, known as a happi, and take some photos to share with your friends.

Visitor information

This is a drop in event. To plan your visit, you can download a copy of the timed events schedule and map (pdf) or see the printed programme (pdf). This event is point 21 on the map.

To attend the Festival, please make sure to register for free. Registering is the only way to receive the latest Festival updates, a first look at the programme, and opportunities to book onto popular talks, creative workshops and tours.

Register now for the Festival

Event categories

  • Family with 12+
  • Family with 7+
  • Workshop
Guide to Japanese national costume