Left loose and worn as a classic cover-up, a floral bed-jacket style kimono looks stunning clashed with a contrasting oriental-style floral dress, or adding impact to a classic neutral-toned ensemble, two looks I explored in last week's How To Wear... Florals post.
But it also has far broader possibilities, which don't necessarily require you to wear anything else underneath to "cover up" - it makes a stunning, unique top in its own right.
It can be toughened up for a Geisha-meets-warrior-diva look, by pairing with leather skinnies and lace-up ankle boots, and cinching in with a matching leather obi belt (a look I first featured in How to Wear... Leather).
Look 1 - Trousers: Primark (Past Season); Boots: Peacocks (Past Season); Belt: ASOS (Past Season)
Look 2 - Skirt: Jane Norman (Past Season); Shoes: Primark (Past Season); Body Chain: Freedom at Topshop
Look 3 - Skirt: Jane Norman (Past Season); Belt: H&M (Past Season); Earrings: Primark (Past Season)
Alternatively, I like to wear it as a (discreetly safety-pinned!) wrap top tucked into a high-waisted skirt for a romantic feel. Teamed with a pencil skirt, it has a Marilyn Monroe vibe, which can be glammed up to the max and given a contemporary twist with a delicate-stranded body chain. With a chiffon maxi and more delicate obi belt, a typically oriental look is infused with a boho twist.
Next on my agenda is to try pairing with high-waisted palazzo pants for a glam autumnal pyjama-style look - watch this space!
The shape of this AW12 Accessorize kimono, £35, above, would lend itself well to wrap-top looks.
Longer lines can be more flattering on apple and pear shapes. This fringed cardigan from Matalan's AW12 collection is elegant enough to wear over a formal evening dress for a glamorous twist, but the sheer fabric would inject sex appeal if worn as a top (up to you how daring you want to get with what you wear underneath - try a bandeau top for a just-the-right-side-of-demure look). I think it would look sensational tucked into a velvet pencil skirt to pick out the detailing - check out yesterday's How to Wear... Velvet post for more inspiration.
Tomorrow: How to Wear the Body Chain