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on 13 March 2015
Highly recommended! Any one who wants to make their own Japanese clothes will be able to do so using this book. John Marshall clearly knows his stuff. Instructions, patterns and diagrams are comprehensive and very clear. Yes, the photos showing the made-up clothes are unmistakeably 80s as reviewer Mrs B pointed out but what does one expect from a 1980s book!! Excellent!
3 people found this helpful
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on 30 September 2016
Everything you ever wanted to know about using narrow widths of cloth for lovely jackets and kimonos.
2 people found this helpful
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on 9 June 2018
Excellent product prompt delivery
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on 10 January 2013
Well layed out book with good instruction and patterns that are easy to follow. Will be useful for tradional patterns
4 people found this helpful
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on 4 March 2016
Love the variety of garments included. I haven't tried making any yet but I will.
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on 18 December 2014
BRILLIANT
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on 20 December 2013
I could not find authentic patterns for kimono anywhere including via Google but this book is so comprehensive even a non needle woman can follow the instructions to make the real thing!
2 people found this helpful
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on 1 February 2012
Wow, plenty of technical detail. Explains how to make Japanese-style clothes. I bought it because I wanted a kimono or something similar for wearing to do my Zen meditation and thought I could show it to someone who can sew and they could make one for me. Now I have seen the designs I want a pair of pleated Japanese trousers too. I guess I will have to find a tailor. Definitely for the person who can sew and not for people like me who can sew on a button (maybe) and that is about it. It does not explain how to wear the clothes or other details of this aspect of Japanese culture but that is not what the book offers so no criticism of the book for that. I just mentioned it because you will need to find another book to tell you how to wear your clothes if you ever get around to making some (or find someone to make them for you). One thing that did put me off a bit was the photographs of people wearing the clothes. They all looked very American. Nothing wrong with Americans looking American but I am British and it was weird looking at the photographs. I bet a British take on Japanese clothes would be very, very different. I think there is a market for some enterprising Brit to do their version of how to make Japanese clothes for wearing in the UK. Another issue I had with the book was it seemed to be mainly for women as if only women are interested in wearing (or making) Japanese-style clothes. I think there was only one male model and he was wearing some sort of weird smoking jacket. I think you could adapt the designs for male use but somehow it felt sexist to me but I don't know if that is a fair comment, more of a gut feeling. Also, as I said, my interest in Japanese clothes comes from an interest in Japanese spirituality and all of these clothes are secular, not a monk's robe in sight. Well, I will try to find someone to make me some clothes and if I do I will post a video review so you can see me in all my glory! As you can see, I am no expert, but as far as I can tell this is a very thorough treatment of its subject and worth adding to your library if you are interested in clothing, design, material culture and sewing but maybe not if you are mainly interested in spirituality ;-)
3 people found this helpful
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on 10 October 1997
Okay, so the line illustrations are a little funky, you're not using this book to learn figure drawing; you're using it to learn how kimono and other Japanese clothing is made. And for that, it's unsurpassed! The fabric layouts are crystal-clear, and the instructions take even the timid novice through step-by-step procedures for getting everything just right, from linings to special sleeve finishes, things you'll never find on a kimono pattern. How do you get those sleeve corners to hang right? This book tells you. Want to know the correct hand-stitching techniques for the different parts of the garment? You'll find it here. I also recommend it to friends who are taking apart vintage kimono for laundering (as the Japanese did), because it tells you all the steps and the proper order for re-assembly. It even tells you how to fold the garments when you're done. For reference purposes, it starts with one of the best quick overviews of historical Japanese clothing I've seen, including those in the more historically-oriented books! Anyone who is costuming and needs historical accuracy should refer to this section. And so you can wear these garments, it also gives simple instructions for such necessities as tying an obi and tying back your sleeves to do work. I might want more instructions for different obi tyings, but that's not the focus of the book, just a bonus. As befits a book that refers to its subject as "clothing," rather than "costumes," it assumes you will actually be wearing these garments, and treats the subject accordingly. And, just so you can see what you might be able to create, the book includes a section of photos of lucious finished garments, from kicky happi-coats to a wonderful uchikake (over-robe) made from two obi!
91 people found this helpful
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on 3 January 2011
This book is old (= from the 80's) and it could really use a facelift. I didn't realize that "modern" in this context meant late 80's. :/

I think in principle the ideas are good, but the way the book is made (layout, instructions, illustrations, photos) makes it really uninspirational. It also seems very difficult to understand when you first view it.

You really need to be into Japanese clothing and extremely determined to make one yourself in order to get something out from this.
2 people found this helpful
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