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How To Wear A Kilt

How To Wear a Kilt: An Introduction

Most Important - Wear it with Pride!

A kilt outfit has quite a few different pieces and it is much easier to put them on in the right order. In brief: 

The shirt and socks go on first, followed by the flashes, sgian dubh and brogues.

Next the kilt (with the kilt pin already pinned to it); then the tie; belt & buckle if you are wearing one; and your chosen sporran.

Lastly, top it all off with your jacket and waistcoat - the final touch that really completes your outfit and with our help will complement your chosen tartan perfectly.

Follow the tips & watch the video on this page and you will truly look the part just like Stephen McGrew does in the shot at left!

Top 10 Tips for Rockin' Your Kilt!

TIP 1 : JACKET AND WAISTCOAT

The style is your choice, from formal to more casual - discuss with us to make sure you get the best option for your needs. Most jackets come with a waistcoat (vest) and there are often choices of button, epaulette style etc. Some jacket styles (eg, the Argyll) are best left unbuttoned.

TIP 2 : THE KILT

Your kilt should be worn with the pleats to the rear and the fringed edge on the right hand side. And it should sit high on the waist, at the tummy button.

TIP 3 : KILT PIN

A decorative item which should not be used to pin the kilt aprons together. Pin it through the top apron only. Positioning of the pin can vary but roughly three inches above the bottom of the kilt and two inches in from the side.

TIP 4 : SHIRT AND TIE

To create a modern look to your outfit, wear a Victorian collar shirt with a Ruche tie or if you prefer self-tying, use a stylish Windsor knot. A bow tie with Victorian collar shirt is traditional for formal occasions; if you want the "country" look, try a tweed jacket with business collar shirt and knit tie!

TIP 5 : BELT AND BUCKLE

The belt goes through the kilt loops located at the rear of the kilt waistband and is fastened at the front just above the sporran. The belt is optional when wearing a waistcoat.

TIP 6 : SPORRAN

The sporran is worn at the front of the kilt with the chain strap going through the loops of the kilt waistband at the rear. The top of the sporran should be approximately 5-6 inches below the top of the kilt.

TIP 7 : KILT HOSE (SOCKS)

The hose are usually worn two inches below the knee with the patterned top section folded down. Traditionally, cream-coloured hose are worn with the kilt; black, grey or a colour which complements the tartan are considered more contemporary.

TIP 8 : SGIAN DUBH

Often a favourite gift idea for the Best Man or Groom. The "Black Knife" is worn tucked into the hose at the side of the calf with the handle of the Sgian Dubh protruding from the hose about 2-3 inches. Wear on the right leg if you are right-handed, the left leg if you are left-handed.

TIP 9 : PLAID AND BROOCH

These are optional, but definitely add a touch of drama and flair to your outfit!  The Fly Plaid is the most common these days, worn over the left shoulder (through the jacket epaulette) and pinned with the brooch to help hold it in place. At a wedding, the Groom or Groom and Best Man can wear a plaid and brooch to give them more individuality and prominence.

TIP 10 : GHILLIE BROGUES (SHOES)

These kilt shoes have long laces and no tongue. The traditional way to tie them is: hold the two ends together so they are even; twist the laces round each other 2-3 times; take the ends round the back of the leg and again twist two-three times; back round to the front, tie a bow 2 inches above the ankle; leave the tassels dangling at the front.

For those of us that prefer a bit of visual tuition (and entertainment!) you won't find better than this clip from the Royal Regiment of Scotland.