About the Komon and Yukata Kimonos

About the Komon and Yukata Kimonos

Many of us are familiar with the traditional Japanese garment, the kimono, but far fewer know that there are many different styles of kimono, worn by people for different occasions, so this offers a break down About the Komon and Yukata Kimonos.


A komon kimono is an everyday kimono. It’s the one you wear to visit a friend’s house, or for running errands around the town. Anything goes with a komon, but it’s an informal garment. They are covered in patterns, which can be small or large. The print is a lovely way to add personality to your outfit. It can also work well to have a small or detailed pattern on your ‘working’ clothes to hide any small marks or stains, which allows them to be worn for longer.

While some designs seem to fit better with one season or another, komon are increasingly made with ‘universal’ designs such as stripes or checks. The fabric is not important – it might be natural material or synthetic – but if there is a repeating pattern, on a short sleeved kimono, it’s a komon.


While a komon is an ideal informal day to day kimono, the yukata is less informal and more ‘intimate.’ It’s the sort of thing you wear at home, in place of contemporary loungewear. Historically, the yukata was around before bath towels and was a garment used to preserve modesty before and after bathing. There are far fewer rules surrounding how a yukata can be worn than are in place for wearing a kimono.

Today, they often take the place of a dressing gown for down time at home. They tend to be made from readily available materials such as cotton, which means they wear well and are easily washable. They would generally be lighter than a formal kimono.

About the Komon and Yukata Kimonos Differences

Kimonos are worn out of the house, and a traditional kimono would be worn for very formal occasions, where today we might wear a dinner jacket or evening dress. A komon kimono, as described above, is a less formal version, worn for day to day events. A komon has full-length sleeves although a yukata will have sleeves that are no longer than 50cm. In traditional Japanese dress, the more formal or solemn the occasion, the longer the sleeves would be – no long sleeves at a party!

The collars are another key visual difference. Yukata has a single collar whereas a komon (as a kimono) has at least two collars. One will be high up, close to the neck and the other lower down. The Yukata collar is much stiffer and narrower than that of the komon.

About the Komon and Yukata Kimonos and choosing a Kimono

About the Komon and Yukata Kimonos and choosing a kimono. Kimonos in any form, including komon and yukata, are worn by both men and women. If you don’t have one in your wardrobe then perhaps it is time to invest. You will soon wonder how you ever managed without it! Even if you don’t want to wear it out of the house, it’s the perfect beach cover-up or dressing gown. And always cross the left panel over the right.

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