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Old 05-14-2010, 06:44 AM   #1
delliott
 
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Hakama Question

Does anyone know how I can get the nice crisp creases back in my hakama? They are not there anymore....

"Life is growth. If we stop growing, technically and spiritually, we are as good as dead. "

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Old 05-14-2010, 08:29 AM   #2
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Hakama Question

You can iron the pleats but that only lasts for a few classes so you'll probably have to iron them every so often. You could try starch, but I've never used it so I'm not sure if that will have negative effects. There are hakama on the market with stitched/permanent pleats...although they might be on the expensive side.

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Old 05-14-2010, 08:47 AM   #3
Cliff Judge
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Re: Hakama Question

Pleats stay longer in a cotton hakama if you fold it nicely before stuffing it into your dojo bag.

Synthetic hakama often do not require this care, and there are cotton haka with stitched pleats also.
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:54 AM   #4
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Hakama Question

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Pleats stay longer in a cotton hakama if you fold it nicely before stuffing it into your dojo bag.

Synthetic hakama often do not require this care, and there are cotton haka with stitched pleats also.
There's a dojo in Columbia, MD? I was in Hanover for a couple months and had to travel to Balt. to find a dojo. Balt. area seems to be pretty sparse for aikido.

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Old 05-14-2010, 10:42 AM   #5
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hakama Question

You would have to figure out where they should be, press them in with heat + steam - proper pressing technique is only do 1 at a time, so you can let the fabric totally cool down before moving it.
Then consider edgestitching them in place.

Janet Rosen
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Old 05-14-2010, 11:00 AM   #6
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Hakama Question

Anyone ever have success getting a drycleaner to perm press a hakama?

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Old 05-14-2010, 11:16 AM   #7
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Re: Hakama Question

I heard there was a way to create permanent pleats.... maybe it was with vinegar? I have a cotton hakama that I have been using for at least a month and my pleats look just as crisp as when I got it. I make sure to fold it after every class though and am particular about all the pleats being lined up. A lot of people in my dojo have lost their pleats because they just hang theirs.

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Old 05-14-2010, 11:21 AM   #8
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Re: Hakama Question

Quote:
Adam Huss wrote: View Post
Anyone ever have success getting a drycleaner to perm press a hakama?
I don't know anyone who has had the courage to try.

If there's someone in your dojo who's handy with an iron, you might be able to get them to help you out (I'd offer to pay -- it's not a small task to restore pleats that are totally gone). If it were me doing it, I'd try a first pass with just steam and then a second pass with spray starch. And then, fold it properly, and never store it unfolded (unless it's hung up).
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Old 05-14-2010, 11:41 AM   #9
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hakama Question

Quote:
Ashley Carter wrote: View Post
I heard there was a way to create permanent pleats.... maybe it was with vinegar? I have a cotton hakama that I have been using for at least a month and my pleats look just as crisp as when I got it. I make sure to fold it after every class though and am particular about all the pleats being lined up. A lot of people in my dojo have lost their pleats because they just hang theirs.
Vinegar won't do it.

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Old 05-14-2010, 02:07 PM   #10
Anne-Marieke van Rooij
 
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Re: Hakama Question

Starch will, or stitching close to the edge. However, I get the feeling that both are less respectful to the garment in one way or the other. Why try to master it if you can get it pleated nicely with careful folding and ironing.

Ironing can be a meditative chore, you know.

Enjoy!

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Old 05-14-2010, 02:48 PM   #11
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hakama Question

I don't see anything disrespectul about altering a garment to make it fit or wear better. We are not talking holy relics, we are talking about an item of clothing that in its orginal use was simply a nice pair of pants and in its current use it basically an athetic costume.

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Old 05-14-2010, 03:11 PM   #12
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Hakama Question

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
I don't see anything disrespectul about altering a garment to make it fit or wear better. We are not talking holy relics, we are talking about an item of clothing that in its orginal use was simply a nice pair of pants and in its current use it basically an athetic costume.
Well its use was more utilitarian...as ridding chaps to protect from brush, foliage, etc. Some place philosophical importance in the pleats; Go Rin, Go Jo, etc..

Don't see why attempting to make a hakama look nicer longer would be in any way disrespectful to the garment as the intent is positive. Now if you were sewing your favorite punk band's patch on the hakama, that would be different...
;}

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Old 05-14-2010, 03:25 PM   #13
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Re: Hakama Question

Here is the quote about fixing pleats I read about a while ago....

Quote:
Carol Shifflett wrote: View Post
If your hak is cotton/polyester blend (10% or more poly is best) lay out your pleats exactly as you want them (this is permanent!) And do a test spot before you start.
-- Steam press pleats smooth and flat.
-- Mix 2 tablespoons white vinegar in a cup of water.
-- Wet the pleat edges with sponge and vinegar solution (I suggest you do each one individually) and steam press dry.

This treatment will NOT work on a cotton hakama. For cotton or hemp, you'll have to return to tradition--stitching your backpleats. Until very recently Japanese fabrics were never more than 13"-14" wide, the width of a hand loom. Thus a hakama was made of multiple panels, the seams between them hidden in the back pleats. And fronts might be stabilized with rice paste.
You can emulate this by topstitching the inside (valley) pleats. Use a narrow zig-zag stitch (a straight stitch will pucker). Just the back half of the pleats "permanentized" will make folding enormously easier. I suspect it might be possible to line the backs of the outside pleats (mountain pleats) with lightweight iron-on polyester stabilizer with the vinegar and steam treatment, but I've never tried it.

Cheers!
Carol

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Old 05-14-2010, 09:15 PM   #14
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hakama Question

Thanks for reposting, Ashley! I knew it wouldn't work on cotton but hmm....I'm gonna have to do an experiment on cotton poly blends!

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Old 05-15-2010, 03:58 AM   #15
Lyle Laizure
 
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Re: Hakama Question

I have ironed my pleats and this works well. I have also taken it to the cleaners and had them press the pleats. Folding your hakama before stuffing it in your bag is the best way to keep the pleats longer. Someone said that earlier. Sewing the pleats is a good way but if you do this make sure whomever does it is skilled with a needle as I have seen some hatchet jobs.

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Old 05-15-2010, 11:36 PM   #16
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Re: Hakama Question

Let me know how it goes for you Janet. Not that I could use it on my hak anyway, but it would be good to hear this theory confirmed from someone else.

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Old 05-16-2010, 12:46 AM   #17
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hakama Question

My hak is tetron, the pleats will never come out. I'll have to pick up a yard of cotton poly and play (in my copious free time....)

Janet Rosen
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Old 05-16-2010, 06:15 PM   #18
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Re: Hakama Question

I definitely don't have the sand to sew my own pleats!

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Old 05-16-2010, 09:38 PM   #19
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Re: Hakama Question

I've had pleats fall out of tetron...the damnest thing.

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 06:46 AM   #20
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Re: Hakama Question

What about the old military trick of rubbing wet soap on the inside of the pleat before pressing?

It might be cheating but it'll keep a razor sharp pleat for quite some time...

So next time when you're in full dress hakama on parade with your brass glimmering and the shine from your zori startling small children, your hakama will impress.
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Old 05-17-2010, 08:13 AM   #21
ruthmc
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Re: Hakama Question

I've used spray starch on my hakama (poly-cotton) when ironing it after washing.

It kind of worked in that the pleats stayed crisper for a bit longer, but eventually they came out again. I also found I was having to wash it more because folding it up after class when it was all sweaty just led to it smelling quite quickly

Nowadays I'm onto my third 2nd hand polycotton hakama, and the pleats are all over the place, so I don't fold it properly after class, I just roll it loosely then as soon as I get home I hang it up to air.

It doesn't look any worse than if it had been folded, and doesn't need washing so often, so I'm not freaking out about it As the knees are starting to give way, I'll have to buy a new one at some stage next year (yay my first ever new hakama ) but will go for one with pre-stitched pleats so I can find them again after washing it!

Ruth
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Old 05-17-2010, 12:09 PM   #22
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Re: Hakama Question

My Sensei suggested to go to seamstress and get them to sew a stitch along each crease, both the front and back pleats. It cost about $40, but it was worth every penny. My hakama always has each pleat perfectly creased. It makes folding it so much easier.

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Old 05-17-2010, 12:17 PM   #23
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Hakama Question

Quote:
Shawn Hodgins wrote: View Post
My Sensei suggested to go to seamstress and get them to sew a stitch along each crease, both the front and back pleats. It cost about $40, but it was worth every penny. My hakama always has each pleat perfectly creased. It makes folding it so much easier.
Shawn,
Who recommended that, Blok Sensei? So you just did one stitch per pleat? Do you wear your hakama when training in aikido, or just for iado....bascially, how do you think the stitch will hold up to constant abuse?

Osu!

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Old 05-18-2010, 08:44 AM   #24
Pauliina Lievonen
 
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Re: Hakama Question

I've got a tetron hakama from budogu.com. It practically folds itself, and has kept it's pleats just fine for a couple years now. Love it.
https://www.budogu.com/products.cfm?...categoryId=246

Only downside is, a dojomate of mine recently ordered one and had to pay some strage customs fee, plus with the falling euro it wasn't exactly cheap.

kvaak
Pauliina
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Old 05-18-2010, 12:17 PM   #25
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Re: Hakama Question

Hi Adam, Blok Sensei suggested this when I purchased my hakama for iaido, and I have not had any problem with it, the stitches have remained perfectly during all the movements and tripping I have done while wearing it. He suggest "Seams to Fit" which is about 300m east of the Chudokan on Tecumseh Road. The woman did a great job on it and other students have brought theirs to get their creases stitched

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