Taking part in the Coming of Age Ceremony – Day 127

Today was the Coming of Age Day (Seijin no Hi) which is held to celebrate and congratulate all of those who have turned 20 this year in Japan. Despite being 21, I was very fortunate that I got to take part and wear a kimono.

Me in my kimono!!

Me in my kimono!!

The event is normally held on the 2nd Monday in January and we were very fortunate that the skies were clear and it was really sunny.

We met at the dormitory in Kunitachi at 8am where all these older ladies were ready to help us put on a kimono. There are so many layers that you have to wear and it was really hard to breathe.

Getting ready

Getting ready

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It took over an hour to get ready as each layer has to be positioned perfectly otherwise it makes it hard to put the next piece of clothing on.

Hair and make up

Hair and make up

Accessories galore!

Accessories galore!

We were taken to the city hall where the ceremony took place. There were so many people there already.

IMG_0464It was incredible to see so many girls wearing kimonos. There were also many boys there – some were wearing the male kimono, but many chose to wear suits instead.

Me in my kimono!

Yay!

The ceremony included some speeches and a short video quiz. It didn’t last very long which was good – I didn’t really understand much of what was being said!

Inside the hall

Inside the hall

After the speeches, there was a Cake Party. Yes, you heard me correctly.

A CAKE PARTY!!

It was amazing. The only downside was that it was a bit tricky trying to eat while keeping the kimono clean, which I just about managed!

FREE CAKE!

FREE CAKE!

After eating all that cake, that was more or less the end of the ceremony. But me and my friend Ana decided to take lots of photos outside since this was our first time wearing a kimono.  I’m going to put the other photos into a slideshow at the bottom of this blog post!

A girl we met at the ceremony, Ana, and Me

A girl we met at the ceremony, Ana, and Me

Amongst the guys wearing the male kimono, there were some who were wearing rather fancy/lavish ones. We figured that these guys may have been Yakuza so I had to get a photo with one of them. I managed to get a photo with the guy wearing the most bling kimono – a gold sequin one!

Me and the bling "yakuza"

Me and the bling “yakuza”

We returned back to the dormitory to have lunch which was buffet-style. I now know why Japanese women are so slim, especially women in the past – the kimono are so tight that after eating a few pieces of sushi my stomach started hurting. The obi (belt) that goes around your waist is a physical restriction and you can’t fit any more food into your stomach because it can’t expand anymore! Hahaha

Lunch!!

Lunch!!

We also played Karuta, a Japanese game, and took even more photos afterwards.

Kunitachi Karuta

Kunitachi Karuta

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It was an incredible experience and I’ll never forget it. Hope you enjoyed looking at all the photos!

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This entry was published on January 13, 2014 at 1:20 pm. It’s filed under Japan and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

5 thoughts on “Taking part in the Coming of Age Ceremony – Day 127

  1. twnteo on said:

    Wow, good for you for trying everything, well almost!.
    What a lovely day with blue skies, lovely kimonos and the guys carrying bunches of flowers??!!….was it to give to the ladies?
    I am sure you felt sad for not being able to help to consume all that food….yum…yum….

    • Ah I’m afraid the flowers weren’t for us 😦 don’t know where they got the flowers from! i did my best to eat as much as i could but even if i wasn’t wearing the kimono, I don’t think it would’ve been possible anyway hahaha x

  2. That’s a cool ceremony to have! Always find a reason to celebrate.

  3. This looks like so much fun, you looked lovely in your kimono! And there were two words that really stood out in your post……CAKE PARTY! Lol, I would have felt like taking one of each.

    • Thank you so much! Haha I had to emphasise the cake party as it really was the highlight for me! My mouth dropped when I read on the programme sheet that there was to be a cake party after the speeches!
      Would you believe it, but they actually restricted the number of cakes you could eat! Only 2 cakes per person, but my friend and I managed to sneak an extra 2 cakes by getting some from the other tables….

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