Ever wondered what those cool Japanese tube-sleeved coats are called and where you could try them on in the city? Well, we have answers. They are called happi coats and you can try them on at the Japan pavilion of the International Kolkata Book Fair.
The fair is all things cool, not just for the books and pavilions, but also for the firefighting robots, the food stalls, the knick knacks and performances and the upcoming Kolkata Literature Festival. In addition to these, there’s a chance to shine and have a photo-op in traditional Japanese style.
The Consulate General of Japan in Kolkata, in an open invitation on Facebook, shared a video of a visitor trying out the happi coat. The March 10 post further mentioned, “If you also want your photograph in a happi coat, do visit the Japan Pavilion by 13 March 2022.”
Usually worn during festivals or official gatherings, happi coats are tube-sleeved, lightweight and designed with symbols or texts on the lapels, and a prominent design on the back. They’re often mistaken for the outer coat worn over a kimono called a haori, but the happi is not made of silk and not worn over a kimono. They are, however, equally popular — the Beatles wore a happi coats in 1966 on their tour to Budokan, and more recently, Australian supermodel Miranda Kerr wore one during an event in Japan.
Triggering the interest of netizens, the Consulate General of Japan in Kolkata’s Facebook page also shared a glimpse of a “real Yukata and how men and women look like as they walk around in it.”
A little anecdote on the yukata: they are unlined kimonos usually worn during summer festivals or to bathhouses. And the belt around the waist is called an obi.
So, if you still haven’t been to the Japanese pavilion, then turn up and 日本の一部を体験 する — 'experience a part of Japan'!