Jacky asked me where I had come by them - and there in lies a tale. We have a wonderful shop here in Wellington called Asian Gallery. Its down a little lane in Kilbirnie and it is a veritable treasure trove of all manner of things Japanese, but most particularly of kimono, obi and other textiles. The owner has a licence as a antique dealer in Japan, which is apparently very hard to get, and he is able to buy up all manner of textiles which are not normally seen.
I well remember the first time I ever went there, as I was so overcome by the sight of all the kimono that I started hyperventilating and had to leave. There are literally hundreds of kimono in the tiny shop and the vast bulk of them sell for a mere NZ$25 - that's cheaper than the price of a tee-shirt. My hyperventilating was bought on by the realisation that it was impossible to make rational buying decisions faced with such variety and beauty at such reasonable prices.
The kimono that I have been unpicking were even more of a bargain than this though - they all came from a large collection right inside the door of the shop which are only NZ$5 each. These are all older kimono, some with holes or patches, but others in perfect condition. As you can imagine I find these irresistible whenever I am on that side of town - undoubtedly this is why I seem to have so many. If I take my boys with me when I visit I have to generally bribe them with a treat to ensure they will calmly wait while I wade through the stock - this also raises the average cost per visit! Here is a handful that have all been unpicked since I took this photo and this is my current favourite. It is still to be unpicked and will be kept to go into a quilt for me. I think this one was from the more expensive rack - although this of course is relative given the costs.
I particularly loved the floral designs on the red kimono so have put a couple of larger pieces in to show it off.