An advertisement by a luxurious Italian brand called, VALENTINO, is being strongly criticized by many Japanese people.
Valentino’s advertisement is a video that shows a female Japanese model walking on a Kimono Obi with her shoes on.
Many Japanese people feel her act is an insult to traditional Japanese culture.
VALENTINO’s advertisement has made sensational headlines throughout Japan.
Even though VALENTINO already deleted the advertisement from You Tube and Instagram, the bashing against VALENTINO and the female Japanese model has been spreading today.
I’m Japanese, but I don’t understand why so many Japanese people are this angry at VALENTINO and the model.
I saw VALENTINO’s video, and if anything, I had a good impression of it.
This is because, I felt that VALENTINO struggled to decide how to express the Japanese sense of beauty.
It is so difficult for non-Japanese people to understand our culture and sense.
VALENTINO was not supposed to have malice toward traditional Japanese culture.
Walking on Kimono Obi was definitely not good. But it might be an avant-garde attempt for them.
Japanese critics only pay attention to “Walking on Kimono Obi”.
They cannot see the wood for the trees.
We Japanese should be more tolerant of VALENTINO’s faults.
I’m worried that excessive criticism like this will have a bad influence on the future of the Kimono culture.
For example, many non-Japanese people who are interested in Kimono may feel that this culture seems very difficult, and they may keep a respectful distance from it.
The majority of Japanese people are proud of the Kimono.
But surprisingly, most of them don’t have a Kimono, and they don’t know how to wear one.
They don’t buy Kimono, so the domestic Kimono market is shrinking today.
Do Japanese people really respect the Kimono?
I just want Japanese people to consider our Kimono culture(which we should be proud of) before blaming VALENTINO.
About Kimono Obi.
Kimono Obi is a sash worn to secure a Kimono to the body.
This is a photo of a woman’s Kimono Obi, and it is my mother’s.
Another photo is man’s Kimono Obi, and it is mine.
They are different shapes, and there is a different way to tie each one too.
By the way, I have used this Kimono Obi for more than 20 years. I really like it.