If you've visited a shrine before, it's likely you remember the miko, or shrine maidens. Known as "supplementary priestesses," they perform daily tasks at the shrine including selling omamori (good luck charms) and omikuji (paper fortunes) to visitors. Miko are often regarded with awe and admiration by the Japanese, mostly for their sacred work, but also for their red and white traditional attire. In fact, many people think their white haori (kimono jacket) and red hakama (trousers) uniform is "cute," prompting some people to go as far as to design a bikini inspired by the traditional garment.

The miko bikini is now a successfully funded project on Campfire, first originating from an illustration drawn by Japanese artist cccpo. It depicts a shrine maiden in a racy two-piece swimsuit, which eventually became the inspiration for the Japanese-style bikini.

Source: Campfire

Source: Campfire

Source: Campfire

True to the original illustration, the swimsuit comes with an armband and a skirt. The detail work on the bikini make it an ideal cosplay costume while also ensuring that it won't look out of place at the beach.

Source: Campfire

Source: Campfire

Though some of the returns are already out of stock, patrons can still make a contribution via the crowdfunding page. Currently, one bikini outfit can be purchased at the price of 7,020 yen (US$64) in size Small or Medium. Anyone who does decide to pitch in will receive their items in July, which is the perfect timing for beach-goers looking to wear something a little bit different this summer.

Source: Campfire

Source: Campfire


By - grape Japan editorial staff.