The Attire of Boys of the Kamakura Period (1192 - 1342), Japan
A boy belonging to the upper class of the Kamakura period is represented in the following three pictures. His hair, parted in the middle, and then hanging down back, is tied into one strand with a white fillet (moto-yui) at the nape of the neck. His attire consists of a red outer-garment called “Suikan,” a hakama, and an unlined yellow undergarment. Suikan is so named from its stiffing by the wet-and-dried method, but not by starch. He wears a pair of wooden shallow shoes like the French sabot. A “hi-ogi” or fan of thin wooden strips is in his hand. Light green and white chrysanthemum-like ornaments are attached on the inner and outer sides of the sleeves. They are called kikutoji, originally meant to prevent seams from opening. Besides, both the sleeves are ornamented near the border with white and light green tapes stitched into square or rectangular shapes. This shape is called Kenuki-gata from that of a tiny tool like the modern tweezers, used in olden times for pulling out splinters run into the skin. These tweezer-like ornaments were used mostly for boys under 14. It may be said that the elegant style of the boys of the period can be vividly seen in these illustrations.
Translated by K. Takigawa
Text and image via Naomi no Kimono Asobi on Flickr. Photos appear to have been taken during the late 19th or early 20th century