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I'm considering purchasing an indigo hakama and would be gratdful for the comments and advice of those who have already purchaed one or those who have knowledge of the care of one.
I've read with interest the article by C.M. Shifflet on the setting of the dye and I've seen a Tozando indigo hakama at my dojo. The only other one for aikidoka seems to be the Iwata brand. Anyone seen both and can make comparisons? Any other recommended brands? What are the pros and cons of owning an indigo hakama as opposed to an ordinary cotton one apart from it's unique colour?
Thanks for your help.
I currently own and sometimes wear an indigo hakam from Iwata (http://www.alpha-net.ne.jp/users2/iwataco/iwatatop.html). I like the way it looks and feels, but I will say that it will "smurf" things for quite some time, even if you do go and wash it in the washing machine as Carol's article (http://www.aikiweb.com/misc/shifflett3.html) suggests; it'll leave your hands tinged with blue and if you take any vigorous ukemi (especially suwariwaza), it will leave indigo streaks on the mat which are a pain to get out.
I've seen the Tozando (http://www.tozando.com) brand indigo hakama and have heard good reviews from people wearing it. I haven't worn one yet so I can't comment on its quality myself, though.
As far as taking care of it goes, it's basically the same thing that I do for my 100% cotton Bu Jin Design (http://www.bujindesign.com) hakama. I always fold it after I wear it and wash it probably about once every six months to a year.
Hope that helps.
Thanks for the input, Jun. I own a Bu Jin Cotton hakama myself and was wondering how the Iwata indigo hakama compared with that : is it as thick and heavy as the Bujin hakama?
The Iwata hakama that I own isn't as thick as the Bu Jin Design 100% cotton hakama, but I also believe that Iwata sells a thicker fabric hakama. I bought mine not directly from Iwata but from a friend...
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