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The Obi

The Obi (帯, おび) is a traditional Japanese sash or fabric belt typically worn with a kimono or keikogi by both men and women.

This traditional belt was first used to secure the overlapping front panels of the garments (and keep them from opening) in the Kamakura period (1185-1333), after the hakama went out of fashion (wide pants women wore under kimonos), and the kosode (short sleeved kimono) became longer.

The fashion of the Edo period imposed for some kimono models very long and wide sleeves that changed the proportions to the dress, thus leading to an evolution of the obi, which grew longer and longer until it almost impeded the movements of the women who would make it slide in the back of the dress, where it will become standardized in use by the 20th century.

Discover Unico, the bow tie made from a precious silk Obi.

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