Celebrating Youth Entering Adulthood in Japan

Celebrating Youth Entering Adulthood in Japan

Posted by Yoshi Kai on 11th Jan 2020

Young ladies in colorful kimonos

If you are in Japan on the second Monday of January, you’ll see many young people out and about for the Coming of Age Day—the day for celebrating the youth entering adulthood, and encouraging them to become responsible members of society.

Young ladies look especially elegant in their long-sleeved furisode kimonos. Their elaborate hairdos with bold corsages and floral hairpins complement the colors and patterns of the furisode. They wear formal, traditional zori sandals over ankle-high tabi socks, which have a separation between the big toe and other toes.

Ladies in colorful kimono, zori sandals and tabi socks

Furisode is a long-sleeved gorgeous type of kimono worn by unmarried women for formal occasions. It is made from fine silk in bright pink, red, green, beige, delicate shades of purple, and various pastel colors. Motifs are bold with classical renderings and floral patterns such as plum, cherry, and chrysanthemum. 

The ceremony takes place in the morning at the local city office. Afterward, young adults visit a local shrine, followed by partying with friends or family at home or a restaurant.

Young Japanese listening to speech

The Coming of Age Day tradition (Seijin no Hi) dates back to the eighth-century when it was held on the day of the first full moon of the year. It has been a national holiday in Japan since 1948.