Thursday, December 4, 2014
Last weekend I had a shoot for a newborn Shinto baby blessing at Atago Shrine. It was a really cool experience to be able to participate in such an intimate event. I had never seen an actual ceremony take place inside any shrine before. There was a shinto priest, a priestess, the baby and parents, and a few close friends and family. The inside was so beautiful- there were so many decorations hanging from the ceiling, and lots of beautiful wood carvings. After the ceremony we took a lot of family portraits around the grounds which were really lovely. There was a big carved torii gate, a koi pond, some beautiful garden spots with huge stone lanterns, and several gorgeous traditional buildings with turning red maples grazing their shingles.
Afterwards, we decided to take the famous stairs we had heard about down the hill. This particular shrine is known for granting eternal love, so during holidays apparently it's quite common to see many single women climbing these long, steep steps up to the shrine. There is an escalator off to the side, and a much less steep switchback style staircase around the hill, but I guess the idea of labor and sacrifice strengthens the desire and the prayer for eternal love once at the top and in front of the prayer altar. Coming down the steps gave me some serious vertigo. I was clinging to the side rail the whole time, taking it obscenely slow, and feeling like my stomach was going to come out my mouth. The steps are reeeaaalllyyy steep. When you're at the top, you just feel like you're about to fall to your death. They must close these in the winter - I can't imagine how terrifying they would be with ice all over them.
I really liked what I was wearing that day, the light was perfect, and Ryan was with me helping out for the shoot, so it seemed like a silly thing to not snap a few photos really quick in front of the famous steps. When we moved to Japan I was really excited about the shapeless dress possibilities. It's a lot harder to find dresses that don't cinch at the waist in the states, and I've been craving more swing/ shapeless styles for years now with not much luck. I found this dress at a place called "Niko and..." and it's become one of my very favourite pieces and one of my favourite shops. They sell clothing and housewares- all really nice quality with a sort of rustic twist. The fabric they use always feel so so nice. I love going in just to touch everything- nice thick wools, canvas, denims, angora, wonderful knitwear, and always interesting silhouettes.
Dress: Niko and...
Leggings and socks: harajuku sock shop
Posted by Kitsune-kun at 6:12 PM