October 7, 2010 via Cultural News
On Sunday, September 26, the LA Kimono Club met to honor several prominent members of the community.
Mme. Makiko Ihara, wife of the Japanese Consul General, accepted an appointment as Honorary President of the LA Kimono Club. Mrs. Ihara has shown strong support of Japanese culture here in Southern California.
Mme. Fumi Akutagawa was honored as the recipient of the International Contribution Award from the Sodo Kimono Academy in Tokyo, which recognized her contributions throughout her career in fostering appreciation of kimono in many countries around the world.
Mr. Toshio Handa, the President of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Southern California and the LA Tokyo-kai, entertained the group with his kodan talents in a delightful tale about samurai entitled “Mikatagahara Gunki.”
Special note was made of the September 30 opening of an exhibition of the architecture and art of Hayahiko Takase, founding member of the LA Kimono Club, at the George J. Doizaki Gallery of the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center. The exhibit will run from Sept. 30 through Oct 10.
Also attending the club event, which was held at the Keiro Retirement Home, was Amie Toyoshima, first runner-up in the Miss LA Kimono contest 2010.
Mme. Akutagawa presented a video of the 2010 All Japan Kimono Dressing Contest held in Tokyo and broadcast on NHK, which included dozens of contestants from all over Japan and the world, both male and female, including some very young children.
Of particular interest were the timed contests of dressing in kimono, as well as a display of modern kimono fashions for men and women.
These included the tanosic for women, which converts from a traditional kimono-and-obi look to a Western-style dress with a wrap or jacket, and a kimono suit for men with trousers, upper garment and a haori-type jacket in solid color silk fabric. The highlight of the contest was the crowning of the new Queen for 2010.
The purpose of the LA Kimono Club is to further the appreciation and wearing of kimono. You can find out more about the club at www.lakimonoclub.com.
Reported by Carol Hyland.