Adventures of one man's journey through 365 days in a kilt.
Heritage of Scotland (HOS) kilts are made in Pakistan. Low price tartan kilts are mostly made in Pakistan. I think more kilts are made in Pakistan then any other place in the world. Sad fact but I think true. Stillwater kilts in the USA also gets their kilts from Pakistan. You may think you are getting real Scottish made kilts but you are not. Another thing about the fabric. Real kilt wool is made by mills in the UK. Very expensive stuff. Retail price $65 to over $95 per yard. The stuff that comes out of Pakistan may be a wool/acrylic blend. If it is all wool it is not of the quality of real kilt wool made in the UK. You will also come across material for kilts called PV (Poly-Viscous). There is only one mill that make true PV for kilts and that is Marton Mills out of the UK (West Yorkshire I think). The Pakistan PV is some type of Poly-Acrylic. I have kilts from HOS in their version of PV. It is not bad material but it will start to "pill" after it gets some wear. The nice feature of PV (any type) is the kilt can be machine washed. Don't put them in the dryer. Hang or lay flat to dry. I don't want to totally knock the Pakistan kilts. For those of us that wear kilts everyday, or most of the time, need a low cost kilt for daily wear. We can't be wearing $500 real Scottish hand sewn kilts for knocking about. My HOS PV kilts I think cost me 36 British Pounds (about $50 US). So great knock about kilts for daily wear. Saves my $500 kilt for the Philharmonic and nice dates. As for knives I normally don't carry one. If I am going a little more dressed up I will add in a simple sgian-dubh. For a utility kilt when I am working on something I may be inclined to strap a Leatherman on my belt.
That is exactly what I was looking for! Thanks for the info, Mike. Now all I have to do is get ahold of that Pakistani supplier and see what their minimum order is. Hrmmmm...As always, thanks for following along!
I am not sure you would want to order directly from them even if you could. I suspect those shops want high volume and to ensure quality you would have to guarantee volume and you would have to monitor the quality very closely. Here are a couple of horror stories about trying to buy kilts, even in quantity, from some of the off shore vendors. This is a story from a Scottish shop owner in the Dayton area that tried to obtain kilts. He was not able to find anyone locally to make tartan kilts so he started to communicate with some of the off shore kilt makers. One company sent him samples and expected a sizable order in return. The quality of the sample kilts were excellent so he placed an order. When the product came in it was a much lower quality. Yes, it looked like a kilt, so as far as the vendor was concerned they were done. I don’t know if he lost any money in that deal or not. Another story came from a group that wanted kilts for their members made in a custom tartan designed for that group. Of course they wanted low price and nice quality. Two specifications that are often in opposition. There were around 100 kilts in that order. Again, the sample was very nice. The entire order was being facilitated by a kilt maker in Indiana. This kilt maker was known for very nice Utility type kilts that were made locally. The entire order turned into a fiasco. The final product was several months late and the quality was just horrendous. I have one of those kilts. It is totally unwearable. The wool is very poor quality as is the construction. The size is also way off. Members never got their money back. That ruined the reputation of the guy in Indiana. He is now out of business. Places like HOS and Stillwater apparently have the volume and the ability to put pressure on the off shore manufacture to make them correctly.