July 20, 2011

All the Kilted Wonder We Can Stand

I'm going to drop a serious knowledge bomb on you today.  We set out to go right to Edinburgh Castle this morning, but I said, "Hey, let's pop in here for a minute!" when we got down the street to Hector Russell, a Highland Dress shop.  There are zillions of shops that sell tartan here, and most of the sell the same basic set of stuff.  A few have a "Highland Dress section" that has nicer kilts, kilt jackets, and such, but the Hector Russell on Princes Street specializes in Highland Dress.  

My Mecca
Ahem....we spent 2 1/2 hours there.  I have been saving my souvenir money for Scotland mostly, and although there are thousands of things I want to buy (Allison's Note:  Sorry, I couldn't let him go on any further with out clarifying.  Andrew told me, "I've budgeted $400 for souvenirs for Scotland and Ireland.  But I didn't really want you to use any of that, sooo... yeah.  I love you!"  Thanks babe.), I thought this would be a good place to get what's called a Great Kilt.  What's a Great Kilt and how is it different from a normal one?  Well, I'll show you!  (The special effects will change your life.)

  Feel thoroughly instructed?  Oh, just you wait.  I actually have several occasions that I've needed something like this to wear...Madrigal Dinners, Renaissance Fairs (not that I would go to one of those), and on laundry day...so I got one!!!  As for the tartan decision, that's what took so long.  My normal kilt that I have now is modern MacKenzie:

There are several other shades of MacKenzie, too:

Muted MacKenzie
Ancient MacKenzie
Dress Modern MacKenzie
Weathered MacKenzie
I wanted to go with either Ancient or Weathered MacKenzie since this is an old style of kilt.   We (the sales guy and Allison and I) looked through several books from different tartan mills, because some have all the MacKenzie tartans and some don't.  After much debate I decided on the Weathered MacKenzie.  The story goes that when the English outlawed tartan after a rebellion in the 1700s, some old grandmother in the MacKenzie clan buried all the tartan fabrics in a box.  When the ban was ended 50 years later, the MacKenzies dug up the box and, poof, the picture above is what it looked like!  Lots of clans have a weathered option in their tartans...it's usually brownish and greyish in color with the same pattern as the other colors.

I told you you'd learn something.

(Please keep reading.  Please.)

I managed to get the salesperson to call their local mill and send the 6 meters of Weathered MacKenzie to the shop by tomorrow so that I don't have to shell out $90 more to have it shipped to me.  Along with the fact that the mill sold it to them at a slightly lower price, I ended up getting a REALLY good deal on it.  One of the guys who was helping me kept reminding me of that.  In fact, I seriously couldn't tell if he was angry with me, happy with me, or making fun of me from one minute to the next.  He'd better like me, with as much money as we just spent there...  Anyway, HOORAY!  We go by tomorrow afternoon to pick it up and figure out how to cram the thing in a bag for a carry on.  

Allison: Meanwhile, I'm determined not to eat dinner so that I can afford to buy a scarf.


1 comment:

  1. That is a serious knowledge bomb...