By Katsumi Yumioka

By Katsumi Yumioka

If you can paint my happiness when I received my copy of this beautifully printed book from the highly regarded Japanese stylist and kimono antiquarian Katsumi Yumioka, it would be a human being in the middle of a green field of grass under the perfect California sun eating the best red velvet cheesecake in the world.

This book provides a delicious and wonderful experience for anyone interested in fashion and Japanese History.


It showcases an in-depth exploration of Japanese color theory told through the lens of a rare antique kimono collection, each spread in this exquisite book presents a single color and its meaning in the context of Japanese culture.

It further organizes the kimono and obi (sash) according to what the author calls “Japanese Kokoro no Iro” (colors of the Japanese heart).


It’s fascinating how it shows various Kimono and Obi from the Edo period up to the present.

The book is populated with colors, patterns and highly entertaining and informative facts about each Kimono and their meanings.




“For example, the use of white, black and gold as an expression of cheer. Red indicates the sun, blood and fire. White black and silver express sadness. Black communicates the poignant darkness that covers all things. Yellow is the joy of the harvest. Pink conveys the long awaited spring. Purple shows reverence. Brown articulates the land, green the trees, and blue the sky and the sea” –Katsumi Yumioka


I love how it delves deeper into the signs and symbols within the pages of colorful, intricate and beautiful Japanese history.


With knowledge of both Western and traditional Japanese fashion cultures, KIMONO AND THE COLORS OF JAPAN is certain to become a must-have reference for textile designers, tattoo artists, and anyone interested in learning more about this iconic Japanese garment.


PIE International’s full North American Spring/Summer 2018 catalog is available for viewing now at

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PIE International titles are distributed in North America via Ingram Publisher Services, and available for purchase wherever books are sold. 


For over twenty years, Japanese publisher PIE International Inc. has been bringing books of unparalleled quality, originality, and beauty to the North American market, making their catalog consistently sought-after by visual entertainment industry professionals. The variety of PIE’s active list ranges from legendary Japanese artist Hokusai Katsushika, one of the most famous Ukiyo-e artists, to Otomo Katsuhiro, author of the mega hit anime/manga series AKIRA

Originally founded as a graphic design firm, ever since they began to publish books in 1971, the guiding philosophy at PIE has been to create titles that are ‘Sweet and Fresh’ – so much so, these have become essential keywords at the company’s Tokyo headquarters.

“When we make a book, we always ask ourselves: is it Pretty? Impressive? Entertaining? That is the PIE spirit,” president Hiromoto Miyoshi explains.

In Spring/Summer 2018, PIE International – already well known to Japanese book lovers as one of the country’s leading art book publishing houses – will release five remarkable front-list titles sure to make a lasting impression on North American audiences, and all who seek out works of great artistry, insight, and freshness.