Kinloch Anderson is at the forefront of a major industry in Scotland: kilt making. Kilts account for 5% of Scotland’s overall GDP and is a highly respected article of clothing for men for multiple occasions. Kinloch Anderson has been making kilts since 1868 and is a well-established name in the kilt business. The company frequently supplies kilts and accessories to the royal family and received The Royal Warrants of Appointment as Tailors and Kiltmakers to HM The Queen, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh and HRH The Prince of Wales (also known as Prince Philip and Prince Charles, respectively).
One of the main differences between a kilt and a skirt is the hem. A skirt has a hem, while a kilt has the leftover threads and strings carefully sewn back inside the fabric. The massive amount of pleats in a kilt make it impossible to have a hem, as the kilt would become too bulky. A true Scotsman would wear the kilt, a sporran (a pouch for belongings that would normally belong in trouser pockets), kilt pin, sgain dubh (a knife), with a jacket, belt, and buckle. It is considered unusual for a man from Scotland not to wear a kilt when he gets married. Typically, his groomsmen will also wear the kilts in the same tartan. The outfit can be worn to very formal occasions, but also in everyday life.
Tartan is the pattern of fabric used to make the kilt. In the U.S., we refer to tartan as plaid. The tartan that you choose for your kilt is very important. Below is a photo of different tartans and what and where they can be associated with including St. Andrews Old Course, the city of Edinburgh, Queen Margaret University, and the Edinburgh Zoo Panda. Families with Scottish ancestry can find their family tartan from Kinloch Anderson here.
Kinloch Anderson believes in treating the kilt with the upmost respect in order to preserve what it stands for. It’s easy to laugh at “men wearing skirts” when you see it, but Scotland considers it very normal and respectable. One of the owners of Kinloch Anderson mentioned today that Scotland is a country that chooses to protect the patriarchy and gives men the highest honor by allowing them to wear such beautiful clothes. I do find it interesting that Scotland considers themselves to be male-dominated when their monarch and Prime Minister are women. However, the kilt is a symbol that is cherished among Scottish families and often passed down for generations.