If you’re a lover of clothes, you know there are many clothing pieces you can stock your closet with, but not all are essential staples you’ll wear time and again. The temptation to fill your wardrobe with excess items can be strong, but more important than quantity is the quality of your garments. This refers both to the quality of the material and stitching, but also to those quality pieces out of which you can make any number of outfits. When considering clothing staples that you can wear numerous ways (and throw on when you’re stumped to still look trendy), you can’t forget about the kimono.
A few different visuals might come to mind when you think about kimonos: there are traditional Japanese kimonos, sleepwear robes, lightweight cardigans and shrugs, silky coverups, and thicker knits all labeled as kimonos. When we talk about the kimono as a wardrobe staple, we’re talking about any type of kimono—from lightweight to thick knit material—that adds to an outfit as an outer layer. This leaves plenty of options for how to wear this clothing piece throughout the seasons and throughout your different style preferences.
As you can probably guess, with such a variety of kimono types and looks, there are many ways to style this essential. Here are five of our favorite ways to wear a kimono that are effortlessly chic! All of the kimonos shown are from Johnny Was, so if you find you can’t live without any of these looks, head over there to score the pieces for yourself.
A Cropped Kimono Over a Tank Top and Jeans
Kimonos are the perfect layering piece; they add a hint of warmth when you wear a lightweight one in mild weather while contributing tons of extra style to your outfit. A simple but lovely way to wear a kimono is to pair a cropped one that has a simple design with jeans and a tank top. If you select jeans with a mid-rise waist that sits where the kimono’s length ends, you’ll create lines that flatter your body. For a casual but chic outfit, match black jeans and a black top with a dark colored kimono—it’s understated but stylish.
A Bright Boho Kimono With Sandals and Blue Jeans
We love a soft bohemian outfit, and all it takes to create one is to pair your boho kimono over literally anything! An especially laidback and whimsical look is straight-leg raw hem blue jeans (the super comfy kind that shows you’re feeling relaxed) with a neutral white tee and casual sandals, and your colorful patchwork kimono as the icing on the cake. A mid-thigh length kimono is perfect for when you want to add flowy movement to your outfit. This look feels very by-the-sea-chic, and would be perfect for your next barbeque, brunch, or shopping date.
A Full-Length Kimono Belted as a Dress
Kimonos don’t always have to be added over top of your other clothes, or at least not in any way that shows your under layers. We’re saying that kimonos are fabulous enough to stand on their own. If you grab a gorgeous full-length kimono with a stand-out pattern (such as this silk patchwork kimono) and your favorite simple belt, you can treat the kimono like a stunning maxi dress. This look is perfect for spring and summer because the lightweight material will keep you cool and breezy and help you glow under the hot sun.
A Denim Kimono With Blue Jeans and a Headscarf
You might not have known that kimonos come in denim as well, which makes them perfect for outfits to which you want to add a denim jacket. Denim kimonos establish a more trendy vibe than your classic jean jacket. Denim is known as a thick material that can be warming, which makes it a top pick of ours for those chillier seasons. Everyone knows that denim-on-denim, when confidently worn, is an ultimately chic look, so we love the idea of recreating this look with a cropped denim kimono. Since denim-on-denim sticks to a blue color scheme, a bright headscarf can add a touch of fun to your outfit.
A Lux Velvet Kimono With a Dress
One last chic way you can wear a kimono is by pairing a fancy velvet kimono with your favorite dress. You can either match your kimono to your dress in color and pattern, or layer two complimentary designs for more contrast. This look is incredibly sophisticated, and the best part is that it allows you to wear the dresses you love even during the cold weather.
Kimonos are versatile clothing staples that come in a wide variety of styles, cuts, materials, and designs, and can be worn numerous ways for chic looks. After seeing all the effortlessly cool and comfortable outfits you can make with kimonos, you’ll want to add this clothing staple to your closet. Look for pieces that can be worn in multiple seasons so you’re never without your favorite kimono!