Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Asano Terao Interview I
Narrator: Asano Terao
Interviewers: Tomoyo Yamada (primary), Dee Goto (secondary)
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: May 19, 1998
Densho ID: denshovh-tasano-01-0023

<Begin Segment 23>

[Translated from Japanese]

DG: What did you do to prepare for your wedding? Your...

TY: Did you sew your own kimono?

AT: Yeah, I sewed my own kimono. That, the crested kimono and all.

TY: How long did it take for you?

AT: Say, I don't remember. There was a big kimono material and goods store called the Oshimo, there, "Asano, it doesn't help when you just play around." There was a kimono material and goods store called the 0shimo, and they prepared the wedding preparation. They asked me if I could sew for them, and they said, "For spending money, it doesn't help when you just play around, so you should work for your spending money." I thought I should try and sew one piece, and the patterns at the bottom was in fashion, so I sewed one with the patterns at the bottom, then they liked it. The patterns matched. It was like that, and someone who ordered said, "Oh, how nice it is as it is sewed so beautifully. I appreciate it," and she thanked the Oshimo kimono material and goods store a great deal. There was an oldest daughter whose name was Onao-san. She took a yoshi, and she inherited the store. This time, she came in person and said, "Ms. Asano, for such and such reason, please sew for us, please sew for us." I said, "I don't sew well, so I don't like it." She said, "No, no, when you sewed last time," the bottom pattern was in fashion, "the patterns were matching neatly. The customer was very happy, and she came to thank us. So please sew for us." "Well, because I play, I just play, I don't have spending money." Then, my mother, when I told my mother, she said, "Yeah, it doesn't do anything if you just play, in the middle room, in the middle room, what, the stand has already been set up, so why don't you go there and sew kimono for them?" So I said, "Well, then why don't I give it a try?" Then they liked it. In this way, whenever there was a wedding, let's see, I usually got one to two extra pieces. The store was called the Oshimo. The lady called Onao-san was running it. She was the oldest girl, but she didn't marry into other family. She inherited and managed the main family business. When I said, "Onao-san, why do you bring this many? I can't do this many," then she said, "Well, please work on them all night if you have to. If the bottom patterns don't match, there is nothing more embarrassing than that." Then, my mother said, "Since she is asking you, why don't you do it for them? It'll be fine." For a while, until I married Terao, I ended up sewing kimono. When I bought mine, at the store called the Oshimo, there was a lady called Onao-san. She said, "Yes, if it was for you, buy this and do that. Instead, I will give you a discount." She brought out the items of the best quality. So she came in this way. To the Teraos, I wore that at the wedding. I went. Then here, there was something, there was something for some occasions here, and I wore it. Then everybody said, "Oh, this is a nice pattern, very nice." So I said, "I sewed it," then they said, "Oh, is that right?"

TY: So you brought it to the U.S.?

AT: I brought it over here. I brought it over, but I asked my friend to take it back to Japan. I didn't have a chance to wear it. I wore it at a Buddhist ceremony because somebody said that we all should wear kimono together. I had it sent over for the occasion. Then, my friends, the kimono was black after all. Then they said, "Hey, you have a really nice patterns." When I said, "Yeah, it went such and such way at the wedding," they said, "Oh, is that so? Then, it is a remembrance." Then, I had it at home, but I didn't have a chance, a chance to wear it. It became a bother, so when somebody went to Japan, I asked the person to take it back. I told her that she could just donate it to anywhere. I said that I didn't have a chance to wear it here. So I said, then my younger sister said, "If it is from my sister, I want to keep it." So I gave it to her. My sister, she passed away. Sometime ago. So, me, I don't have siblings any more. I also had two half brothers. The second boy -he was still small- was in my family register. His name was entered in the family register, and I had my name entered in the Teraos. My mother said that she would never make us yoshi. It happened in that way. I did more, but it wasn't worth it. They spent it all. They all passed away.

<End Segment 23> - Copyright © 1998 Densho. All Rights Reserved.