We've all had that moment with our wardrobe. You know the one. You're staring bewildered at the rows of clothes hung neatly in front of you and you can't find a single outfit that you'd love to wear that day. Sigh. If you've ever felt like this, then you know how frustrating it can be - but help is at hand.
Sometimes all you need is an item that's a bit different; a piece of clothing with that special something for those days when a classic abaya won't cut it - in steps the kimono.
A kimono is effortlessly stylish, adaptable and vibrant, all while retaining a graceful modesty - which makes it perfect for those days when you'd like to switch up your style without going over the top.
If you've never come across a kimono, or you're unsure on how to wear one, then you're in luck. Today, we're taking you through our compact style guide to kimonos.
What is a kimono?
The kimono is a traditional Japanese garment that rose to popularity in the Far East - and in Japan in particular - throughout the 8th century and into the modern day. The word itself is derived from two parts: ki (wear) and mono (thing or object), which when put together translate into something like 'worn thing' or 'worn object' in English.
A cherished aspect of Japanese culture, the standard kimono was developed into various types which were worn for different occasions and environments such as weddings, funerals, religious ceremonies and day-to-day duties.
The kimono has been adopted by international designers in the last decade to provide a contemporary take on a classic silhouette - and at AbayaButh, we have a lovingly crafted collection for you to add to either your wardrobe or your friend's as a gift.
What to wear underneath
There's no question about it: a kimono brings with it an air of sophistication - but that doesn't mean it can only leave the wardrobe for formal occasions. The formality of a kimono can be quickly toned up or down by combining it with different layers underneath.
For casual situations such as heading to a lecture, shopping in town or meeting friends for a coffee, pairing a light kimono with a pair of jeans and a neutral top will offer a toned-down look that's both comfortable and situation appropriate.
For slightly more formal settings, such as an evening at a restaurant or going to work, then a pair of culottes, a white top and kitten heels can create the perfect underlayer to bring a smart slant to your ensemble. For those very special occasions, feel confident in our white inner slip dress - the perfect accompaniment to any colour or style of kimono.
Our inner slip dresses are also available in a variety of other colours to suit whichever kimono you choose.
Which colours to choose
As we head into winter, you might be drawn to a darker colour palette consisting of blacks, greys, browns and khaki. These colours are extremely adaptable and therefore make great choices if you're looking to build up a staple set of kimonos for the season ahead.
However, you might consider bringing some brightness into the bleak mid-winter days with more colourful choices. Whether you choose a flawless ruby kimono with pearls to wear to dinner or a sun-soaked saffron kimono for your 9-5, there's a vivid spectrum of colours available - which means you shouldn't restrict yourself to only neutral shades.
To embellish or not to embellish?
There is beauty in the simplicity of a basic kimono, with its soft touch, timeless silhouette and lightweight balance. Sometimes, an extra embellishment can be exactly what you need to make your outfit pop that little bit more - and we have embellished kimonos in abundance.
Across the Damask Embroidered Kimono, you can see charming embroidery detailing that takes its base design to the next level, while the Floral Applique Kimono - available in a range of colours including this adorable baby pink - uses chiffon to bring the piece to life.
Our design team has devoted themselves to creating many variations of kimono, so you're bound to find one to suit your personal preference - whether that's a simple design or a detailed alternative. With a staple set of kimonos, you can mix it up for different occasions both this season and in the warmer seasons to come, meaning that this winter, your wardrobe won't be boring.
Until next time,