I have always been fascinated by the Japanese culture. Although I have never had the opportunity to visit the beautiful country, I did spend two years learning about the culture and language during my high school foreign language elective. One of the most awe-inspiring traditions of this ancient culture is their incredible ability to transform ordinary pieces of paper into magnificent works of origami art.
As the traditional symbol of love in Japan, flying cranes are a popular motif in wedding celebrations, appearing on everything from invitations to kimonos to decor. Japanese Americans fold 1,000 wedding cranes and string them around the reception room to bestow blessings upon the marriage.
An incredible labor of love, modern couple are coming up with unique ways to incorporate garlands of birds into the reception decor. They are also transforming the miniature birds into majestic works of art after the celebration.
Japanese bridal kimonos are striking works of textile art as well. Steeped in thousands of years of history, these vibrantly colored, richly designed robes continue to make an appearance at most Japanese weddings. With the average bride changing clothes three to five times throughout the celebration, traditional Japanese and Western designer dresses are worn.
With more than one dozen wedding kimono components and accessories to perfectly arrange, professional dressing assistants are usually hired to help pull the entire ensemble together. To keep all the items straight, I have compiled a handy definition list of the various items that are needed.