In honor of the 100-year anniversary of the gift of trees from Tokyo to Washington, D.C., a special kimono exhibit and fundraiser, 100 years of Japanese Kimono, is taking place at the Mandarin Oriental (1330 Maryland Ave., SW) Feb. 15 through April 30, 2012. Hours vary by day, please call 301-806-0337 before your visit.
The collection features intricate, beautiful and finely woven kimono, and showcases techniques and the evolution of kimono-making over 100 years. Paul MacLardy and Tena Turner of Arise Bazaar Gallery of Japanese and Asian artifacts are curators of the exhibit. Their carefully selected display expresses a shared vision of motifs that demonstrate Japanese culture, society and history. All kimono are from the personal collection of MacLardy, Arise Gallery and several collectors.
Coinciding with the exhibit, a 3-day fundraiser will take place in the Corcoran Room of the hotel on April 4 (5-8 p.m.), and April 5–6 (noon-8 p.m.). Beautiful kimono will be on sale, as well as accessories, jewelry, and a variety of Japanese items including yukata robes, obi socks, and obi and getta shoes. MacLardy, a Japanese textile connoisseur, will sign copies of his book, Kimono, Vanishing Tradition. A collection of official National Cherry Blossom Festival merchandise will also be available. To preview the offerings, visit arisedc.net and nationalcherryblossomfestival.org.
The kimono available will appeal to a wide range of tastes and budgets. The collection includes a range of kimono starting at $10, attractive to quilters and sewers, to kimono from $245 to $1,000 for lovers of fashion and traditional Japanese wear.