Japanese: "Kosaki no Ikimi-gozen wa, kanojo jishin no kenri ni okeru chuugakkoo jugo'i no tsubone o teiji."
English: "Presenting Kosaki no Ikimi-gozen, a court lady of the junior fifth court rank in her own right."
Her clan name is "Kosaki" (子崎), which means "young coast" and her given name is "Ikimi" (気美), which means "spiritual beauty." Her status of junior fifth rank qualifies her as a “denjobito” – a courtier with palace access – and permits her to wear kurenai robes in her juni-hitoe ensembles. As one of the forbidden colors, Ikimi-gozen’s ability to wear kurenai (scarlet red) colored robes was a sign of high position within the Imperial court hierarchy.
I was doing some research on Japanese historical fashion and I found this website about the Heian period of Japan. And this is what I learned!
This is the style of clothing that was worn by important ladies in the royal court (between the years 794 to 1192) and it's called "juni-hitoe" which means "twelve layers."
Basically, the ladies would all wear the same white underkimono and red baggy hakama pants but they would differentiate themselves from each other by wearing multiple layers of colored kimono over the basic outfit. During the summer the ladies could wear as little as 1 hitoe (outer kimono) and as many as 20 hitoe during the winter or on ceremonial occasions! The there were no real patterns on the hitoe since the idea was to have many layers and the focus was on the color combinations created through the layering process.
As it sometimes still applies when kimonos are worn in modern times, certain motifs and color schemes are considered appropriate for different times of the year and many (if not all of those season-appropriate customs) were developed and enforced during the Heian period. Using my birthday as a guide, I chose a juni-hitoe color scheme (called "Haji Momiji" or "Sumac Foliage") and drew up this!
Then it also inspired me to continue doing more research and draw up costumes for myself from different historical periods from lots of different countries! I call it my International Princess/Courtesan Collection! So there's more coming!
Just in case anyone finds it familiar, this the style of kimono that Inuyasha's mother is usually seen wearing.