perfumes her wings by floating
over the orchid
With more than 1,200 years of history as the imperial capital of Japan (794-1867), the lavish, elegant life of the nobles of the Heian period was perhaps Japan’s finest period. The costumes worn in this period, for example, juni hitoe (for empress) and sokutai (most formal costume for men), were exclusively worn by the imperial family and the elite of nobility.
There is hardly any opportunity today to actually see and touch real Heian-period costumes. At the Heian Costume Experience Studio, visitors can try an exclusive costume which is reproduced from thorough research and made by hand, by the owner, Ms. Fukuro, who has devoted her life to creating Heian-period costumes. Dress yourself in a noble Heian-period costume and imagine the elegant life of imperial people in that age.
First, you choose your favorite costume from a wide range of options: Juni hitoe (12-layered exclusive kimono for empresses), kouchiki (a little more casual than juni hitoe), sokutai (most official for men), and even smaller costumes for kids. The staff members will dress you carefully and treat you like a prince or princess. A special wig is also available (extra charge required).
Wearing a set of juni hitoe may take some patience as each layer of kimono is carefully put on. In the end, when all the layers are on your body, it can reach up to as much as 44 pounds, making it hard to move. However every layer has a meaning and the staff will explain in detail about each element. Learning about Heian-period costumes will lead people to the mysterious, elegant world of the Heian period.
Reservations are required; The experience takes about 2 hours; Juni hitoe: from 20,000 yen, Costume for kids: from 30,000 yen; Costume for men: from 20,000 yen. Interpreter and professional photographer can be arranged (additional charge required);
Tel: 075-231-2980; Open: 9:30-17:00
For Information: www.junihitoe.net/
For access: http://www.junihitoe.net/taikenjo/access.html