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Han-eri, Inside Collar of Kimono

Inside collar sewn on Juban (襦袢, under garment for Kimono) is called Han-eri (半襟, half length collar). It is called so because of its length approximately a half of outer Kimono. The purpose of wearing Han-eri is to prevent stains, such as hair wax or sebum. When it gets dirty, it will be removed and washed to be reused.

In the past, Han-eri were mostly colored and patterned. Some gorgeous Shishu-eri (刺繍衿, han-eri with embroideries) cost even more than a couple of thousands dollars. In the Showa (昭和) era, during which Kimono became a special outfit and was no longer worn as everyday casual clothes, plain white Han-eri became the standard. Nowadays, along with the retro boom, various kinds of colored and patterned Han-eri are gaining popularity again.

The standard Han-eri for Maiko (舞妓) are red ones with gorgeous embroideries. As you grow experienced, Han-eri you are supposed to wear will be the ones covered by white embroideries to the extent that the red cloth no longer can be seen. However, when a Maiko becomes a Geiko (芸妓), the standard is changed to the plain white ones without any embroideries. Therefore, this transition of the status is referred to as “Eri gae (襟替え, changing the collar)”. New Geiko are also called as “Eri gae san (襟替えさん, Ms. collar-changed)”.

Han-eri is a small item only can be seen in-between the outer collar of Kimono, but the effect is immense! Please enjoy many varieties of Han-eri as the accent of your Kimono fashion.

Clisk here to see a Blog by a Former Maiko, “Do You Know?”

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