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Unread 12-03-2014, 11:10 PM   #1
Kanako Maeda
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Feudal Japan cosplay/costuming

Anybody familiar with the outfits of farmers Samurai and Kunoichi during the Sengoku Jiddai or the Heian Jiddai ? I'm still very new to the details of these eras, but I'm fascinated with their clothing. Anybody have a similar interest?
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Unread 12-06-2014, 12:49 AM   #2
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For female ninja, their attire would be no different from a male ninja, really. Ninja generally disguised themselves as civilians - a kunoichi could even disguise herself as a prostitute or all other manner of average female roles. Wikipedia has a small section on ninja disguises and equipment. You can even check their sources to get even more info.

As for the clothing of farmers and samurai of the Heian and Sengoku eras... Well, let me tell you this. It wasnt the kimono as we know it today. Those didn't come into themselves until around the Edo period, and mostly in urban settings. Unfortunately, my specialties lie within the kimono as we know it today. However, I do know that Liza Dalby's book "Kimono" does go over briefly the historical garments that were worn by people pre-kimono days. I'll look it up for you when I get the chance and get back to you here. :3
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Unread 12-06-2014, 07:25 PM   #3
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Check SCA websites. The Warring States era and earlier are in scope for them (Edo and later aren't allowed as they are not pre-1600's), and you will pick up some good construction methods. They have a whole lot of information on all social classes.

The wraparound style is common through most of their history, but width of cloth was different, garments were wider in general, obis were quite narrow or even just cords, and a lot of construction was a whole lot simpler than modern kimono styles, even for nobles. Cotton was rare or unknown prior to the mid-late Edo era (it had to be imported) and, if available at all, was only for the very, very rich. Ramie and hemp were probably the most common fibers for ordinary people.

Farmers and other commoners tended to wear simple, practical styles.

The online Kyoto costume museum is probably a good place to start:
It covers most of Japan's known history, with examples from various social classes. Look under the first link "Costume History in Japan" for examples by era.

This SCA site tends to focus on constructing women's Heian court costume, but has a lot of information and research:
It also has a good list of resources for re-enactors, though the links are old so may not work:
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