* Japanese school uniform : garments sailor suits

Japanese School Uniform: Garments--Sailor Suits

Figure 1.--Yhe sailor suit is a major school uniform style in Japan. It is primarily used as a girls' uniform style, but a few schools also had sailor uniforms for the boys as well.

Japan when after the Menji Resoration in the late-19th century began building a modern school system along European lines. One aspect not coomon in European schools were school uniforms. The Japanese decided, however, that school children should wear school uniforms, especially in secondary schools. This was at a time when most children even in the cities were still wearing traditional clothes. The Government chose Prussian cadet uniforms for boys and English sailor suits for girls. This coresponded to the models used for the new modern Imperial Japanese Army and Navy. Although education for girls was not seen as nearly as important when the country's modern education system was founded, there were some schools for girls. This in itself was a major advance in gender relations. The Ministry of Education apparently selected the sailor dress based on Royal Navy as the appropriate uniform. As the sailor dress is the only Western outfit worn, it had to be a decision taken at the national level. While the sailor suit was the standard, each school set the uniform rules and this differences gradually developed. The sailor uniform generally consists of a blouse attached with a sailor style pleated skirt. There are seasonal variations for summer and winter. This may incllude the color. The sleeve length and fabric are commonly adjusted seasonally. A ribbon or scarfe is tied in the front and laced through a loop attached in the blouse. These scarfes vary in color. While the sailor outfir is almost alwats white and blue, the scarfe can be red. We occassionaly see the sailor outfirs in grey, light green, and black. In addiotion to the bloose and skirts, we also see seasonal summer dresses with saome sailor detailing. Gender differences in education declined in Japan after World War II. The sailor suit is still widely used as a girls' uniform at many Japanese secondary schools. There are a variety of stylistic variants to the sailor suits worn. The sailor suit is also used at a few primary schools. This seems more common at private than public schools. A few primary schools have adopted it as a uniform for both boys ad girls, but this is not very common. Boys and girls wore the same sailor blouse, but the girls wore skirts and the boys pants.


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Created: 8:43 PM 10/17/20063
Last updated: 12:23 AM 2/3/2020