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80130-0002 - Japanese woman in kimono, 1930s

Kimono, but Modern Hairstyle

Artist T.G. Ariga
Publisher T.G. Ariga
Medium Gelatin Silver Print
Period Showa
Location Studio
Image No. 80130-0002
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Photographed in the 1930s, this Japanese woman still wears a kimono in this studio photo. But her hairstyle is thoroughly modern.

This is very likely to have been an omiai photograph. At omiai (お見合い), two single people are introduced to each other to consider marriage. Around the time that this photo was taken, some 70% of Japanese marriages were established through omiai.1

The practice was started among samurai during the 16th century to establish and cement alliances among clans. It later spread to other social classes.

After the end of WWII, the custom of omiai was slowly but surely overtaken by a new custom: love marriages (恋愛, renai). However, even today, between 10 and 30% of Japanese marriages are still born out of omiai.

For more information about modern Japanese women, see 1930s • Woman with Modern Hairdo.


1 古き良きお見合い. お見合いの歴史を紐解く. Retrieved on 2009-05-04.

2 Professor’s House. Arranged Marriages in Japan. Retrieved on 2009-05-04.


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Reference for Citations

Duits, Kjeld (). 1930s: Kimono, but Modern Hairstyle, OLD PHOTOS of JAPAN. Retrieved on September 28, 2022 (GMT) from

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Hello. I am in need of information about this picture. I would like to know the details of when and where this photo was taken. If it is still possible to contact the actual person who took this photo, would it be possible to please give me his contact details. Thank you.


@Marjorie Hornibrook: Thank you for your interest in MeijiShowa. Can you tell me why you would like this information?