Trends in Japan > Fashion > Hands In Gloves
The Perfect Match for Three-Quarter-Sleeve Coats
(January 29, 2008)

Long gloves with three-quarter sleeves. (C)Color & Design Research Room of Kyoritsu Women's Junior College

Gloves are becoming a hot item now that winter is in full swing. Leather gloves, knit mittens, gloves made from velour, jersey, and satin material, and gloves with fur trim are among the hand-wear designs finding increasing favor as an accompaniment to winter outfits.

Long Gloves for Ordinary Occasions
This season, gloves that are 40 centimeters in length and extend up to the elbow have been a hit among working women in their mid-twenties. Traditionally, long gloves were only worn with formal party dresses, but this year they are being used as an accent for more informal outfits. They provide a perfect match for the classic coats with three-quarter-length sleeves that are popular this season, since they keep arms warm while jazzing up the end of the sleeve. Long gloves are big sellers in department stores and boutiques, where they range in price from ¥10,000 ($90 at ¥110 to the dollar) for leather gloves in chic, subdued colors, such as black, brown, grey and burgundy red, to ¥3,000 ($27) for gloves in knit and satin fabrics.


Long gloves with a sleeveless top. (C)FataMorgana cashmere

Fashion-conscious "gals" in their teens and other young women who favor a casual look are creating outfits that feature sleeveless knit tops matched with long knit gloves, matching scarves and gloves, and other sets with gloves. By coordinating gloves with another item, they are able to heighten the overall effect of the look. Long gloves in bright colors, such as pink and yellow, are especially popular. Some young women wear different colored gloves on their left and right hands, layer their gloves, or wear rings or bangles over their hand wear for a unique look. A wide range of designs is available, including gloves with needlework that give a handcrafted look and gloves with sporty border patterns. Gloves are becoming a fashion statement all of their own.

A Useful Accessory
Winter arrived somewhat late this year in Japan, and women continued to wear cotton jackets, cotton-lined blousons, and other relatively light outerwear for longer than usual. Gloves, along with scarves, stoles, ponchos, knit hats, leg warmers, and ear muffs, are gaining favor because, unlike a heavy coat, they can be taken off and put back on with ease when entering and leaving a heated building.

There is little doubt, though, that the popularity of gloves this year has just as much to do with fashion as it does with warmth.

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