Travelers interested in Japanese art and culture will appreciate the Nishijin Textile Center in Kyoto, a large facility showcasing the techniques of Nishijin textile making, developed over 1,000 years of Kyoto’s history. They also perform a fashion show featuring stunning silk woven kimonos with designs representing the current season. My visit was in January, so the kimonos above depict the winter season and transition into spring.
The Fashion Show
The kimono fashion show is held seven times daily (!) and lucky for me they put on the entire show despite an audience of only three. It was magnificently visible how much detail went into creating these textiles. As the Textile Center describes it, spring sings of the scent of flowers, summer speaks of days gone by, autumn indulges herself in simplicity and serenity, and winter applies a delicate dusting of snow to the patchwork of roof tiles. I hope you catch a glimpse of this in the slideshow above.
The Textile Center
They have dedicated an entire floor to a show room of their many silk products, all of which can be purchased. From men’s ties, to gold brocade fabrics and kimonos, they are authentic and well made pieces. The specific reason I came to this textile center, though, is an area filled with small hand-weaving looms where public are offered a chance to use the looms and get some hands-on experience. I jumped at this opportunity since taking classes when I travel is something I love to do. The cost is ¥1800 for adults and you can take home the scarf or whichever product you make.
While I’d heard that this attraction is usually packed with tourists, by visiting in the late afternoon I was able to avoid crowds entirely. The Center is open daily from 9am to 5pm and admission is free. Stop by if you are planning a visit to Kyoto!