The kimono (きもの/着物, lit. 'thing to wear') is a traditional Japanese garment and the national dress of Japan. The kimono is a wrapped-front garment with square sleeves and a rectangular body, and is worn left side wrapped over right, unless the wearer is deceased. The kimono is traditionally worn with a broad sash, called an obi, and is commonly worn with accessories such as zōri sandals and tabi socks.
Kimono have a set method of construction and are typically made from a long, narrow bolt of cloth known as a tanmono, though Western-style fabric bolts are also sometimes used. There are different types of kimono for men, women, and children, varying based on the occasion, the season, the wearer's age, and – less commonly in the modern day – the wearer's marital status. Despite the kimono's reputation as a formal and difficult-to-wear garment, there are types of kimono suitable for both formal and informal occasions. The way a person wears their kimono is known as kitsuke (着付け, lit. 'dressing').
The history of the kimono can be tracked back to the Heian period (794-1185), when Japan's nobility embraced a distinctive style of clothing. Though previously the most common Japanese garment, the kimono in the present day has fallen out of favor and is rarely worn as everyday dress. Kimonos are now most frequently seen at summer festivals, where people frequently wear the yukata, the most informal type of kimono; however, more formal types of kimonos are also worn to funerals, weddings, graduations, and other formal events.
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