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Highlandwear Kilt Kilts Scottish History tartan

Tartan Takeover!

Houston’s had previously written on a blog about celebrity men in kilts after US rapper P Diddy rocked out Glasgow’s Fruitmarket in his grey kilt whilst flying the Saltire. This led us to think… with all the many celebrities including actors, musicians and TV stars that have donned the kilt on both stage and screen, who deserves to make the Top 10? There was much debate here at Houston HQ but the results were inconclusive, no one could agree!

Our top 10 included

PDiddy
Biffy Clyro
Gerard Butler
Ed Westwick
Ewan McGregor
Sting
Dougray Scott
Sammuel L Jackson
Mel Gibson
Rod Stewart
Mike Myers
Ashton Kutcher

However, since this list has been created we quickly began to notice, it’s not just men that are rocking the the kilt. Ladies have also bought into the tartan trend and so began the tartan takeover!
Although kilts and tartan are a traditional form of dress adaptations of these such as tartan shirts, skirts and dresses can be found in high street fashion stores. Modern fashion designers such as Alexander McQueen and Vivienne Westwood have introduced tartan to the catwalks of the most high profile fashion shows giving highland wear a modern edge. Tartan has become a noticeable celebrity trend with various styles been worn by stars such as Kiefer Sutherland, Chris Noth, Billy Connolly, Sean Connery, Rihanna, Katherine Jenkins, Taylor Swift, Victoria Beckham, Kylie Minogue and Emma Watson to name only a few. Furthermore, tartan has most recently been worn by The Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton which has given the tartan trend a regal accreditation. This celebrity trend has widened the tartan appeal around the globe to a much larger and more diverse audience.
Scotland has set the precedence for New Year and Hogmanay celebrations with millions of people round the world wearing Kilts, trews and other tartan clothing to honour their Scottish decent whilst singing to our very own Rabbie Burns’ beautiful ballad Auld Lang Syne. Whilst many believe the term ‘traditional dress’ to reflect ideas of old or outdated wear, kilts and tartan have never been more fashionable or versatile. Available in thousands of variations of tartan, with a diversity of shirts, ties and accessories no two outfits need ever be the same!

On that note Houston’s want to create the definitive Top Ten Tartan Trendsetters! Please leave a comment with the male or female celebrity you would like to nominate and we’ll be back soon with the results!

PDiddy in Scottish Tartan Kilt @ Glasgow Fruitmarket
PDiddy in Scottish Tartan Kilt @ Glasgow Fruitmarket

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Highlandwear Kilt Kilts

Celebrity Men in Kilts

PDiddy in Scottish Tartan Kilt @ Glasgow Fruitmarket
PDiddy in Scottish Tartan Kilt @ Glasgow Fruitmarket

Celebrities in kilts have been in magazines, on the stage and screen for years! Even US rapper P Diddy rocked out Glasgow’s Fruitmarket last October in his grey kilt whilst flying the Saltire (touche!).  But of all the celebrities, actors, musicians and TV stars that have donned the kilt on both stage and screen, who deserves to make the Top 10? There was much debate here at Houston HQ on our coffee break, that’s for sure.

Unsurprisingly we could not agree. So we wanted to share our thoughts and let you help us come up with a Top 10 list of celebrity men in kilts.

What celebrities, actors or musicians do you think have really rocked the kilt? To get the ball rolling we have jotted down some of our own favourites.

Celebrities who ‘rock’ the Kilt

  • PDiddy
  • Biffy Clyro
  • Gerard Butler
  • Ed Westwick
  • Ewan McGregor
  • Sting
  • Dougray Scott
  • Sammuel L Jackson
  • Mel Gibson
  • Rod Stewart
  • Mike Myers
  • Ashton Kutcher

With Glee star Kurt Hummel sporting a kilt and the fashion pack all predicting tartan is here to stay we had best keep our eyes peeled for more additions in the coming weeks!

We need your help

All suggestions are very welcome, just add your suggestions using the comment form below. We will ask our friends on Twitter and Facebook too so watch this space.

The Houston Kiltmakers Official Top 10 Celebrity Men in Kilts is coming soon. Come on, join in the fun!

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Highlandwear Kilt Kilts Scottish Clans Scottish History

The Clan MacDonald History

Clan MacDonald

Here at Houston Kiltmakers we not only stock every tartan but we know pretty much all there is to know about Scotland’s Clans. So we wanted to spread the love and share a spot of Scottish Clan history with you. You never know could make for pub quiz fodder or just to impress friends and family round the dinner table! So let’s start with Houston’s Clan of choice, The MacDonald Clan.

The MacDonald Clan

The MacDonald clan is often described as the most powerful of the clans. The progenitor of the clan, Donald of Islay, had distinguished ancestry: his grandfather was King Somerled and his grandmother was daughter of Olaf. The first MacDonald possession was Islay where the family became Lord of the Isles.

The MacDonalds were keen supporters of the Bruce, the only man likely to succeed in restoring Scotland as an independent Kingdom. The power of the Lordship reached it’s peak under John, Earl of Ross and Lord of the Isles. Although all titles were stripped by Henry VII of England when John was defeated. Attempts were made to revive the lordship but by 1545 it became a forlorn hope! Which was the successful policy of the royals to keep the Clan Donald divided. MacDonald remains the most common Mac name in Scotland.

MacDonlad Clan Motto

By Sea And By Land

My Hope Is Constant In Thee

So a big hello to all fellow MacDonald’s out there and if you want to find out more about your Scottish ancestors simply type your surname into our Tartan Finder! Enjoy…..

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Highlandwear Kilt Kilt Hire Kilts

HELP! Am I wearing my kilt properly?

Bute Heather Tartan Kilts

Get ‘Dressed to Kilt’ in 8 easy steps:

  1. Put socks on first, make sure ribs are vertical and tops are parallel. Put the garter flashes on with the flashes to the outside of your leg. Ensure there is a 3 inch gap between the bottom of the kilt and the top of the socks.
  2. Put a sgian dubh down the right hand leg sock with about 1 inch showing
  3. Put gillie brogue shoes on, twist laces 3 times and take round back and front. Tie in a bow about 6 inches above the shoe. Now pop on your shirt and tie.
  4. Put your kilt on with the pleats to the back. Kilts should be snug fit sitting high on the waist. (underwear is not acceptable)
  5. Put your kilt pin in front apron only, at bottom right hand side looking down and 2 inches from the fringe.
  6. Put sporran on next and position correctly on front. Put chain strap through belt loops and fasten at back.
  7. Put belt and buckle over chain strap through belt loops and fasten with buckle to front. Then put your waistcoat & jacket on
  8. Now make sure you have a ‘wee dram’ in your sporran flask! (Assuming you are of legal drinking age of course.)

Still confused? Then watch our video, a step by step demonstration of how to wear your kilt correctly.

Now all that is left to do is enjoy yourself! Weddings, christenings, graduations, dinners, balls, ceilidhs whatever the occasion we love a good knees up here at Houston Kiltmakers.

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Highlandwear Kilt Hire Kilts Kilts for Sale Wedding Kilts

What every Groom should know about weddings!

What kind of Kiltmakers would we be if we did not offer to help you out on the biggest day of your life? Having sorted out men across the world with their wedding kilts for the last 100 years we like to think we are the experts . So whether you popped the question this Valentine’s day or have set a date in 2011, you need to start thinking about a kilt to hire or buy as soon as possible.

Here at Houston’s we know that women are normally in charge and you may not even have a say in the cake, flowers, table plans or the venue. Your friends may mock you as you have to miss the football match for a meeting with the Mrs so be prepared. But one thing you simply have to get right is the Kilt.

Now unlike the beautiful bride who wears her dress once then either sells it on ebay or stores in the attic, as a Groom you are making a lifetime purchase. Start by using the Houston Kiltmakers Tartan Finder to ensure you are wearing the right Scottish tartan kilt, we have EVERY tartan in the world on display in our showroom so are spoilt for choice!

The Grooms Wedding Checklist

  • The Outfit – make sure your kilt is the right tartan, it matches your Best Man and Ushers and it fits!! If you are buying a kilt make sure the kilt measurements are correct and you try on BEFORE the big day.
  • The Wedding List – remember you have to compromise and this is the first test with your future wife. The seating plan may cause a few headaches but
  • The Best Man – choose someone reliable who will not forget the rings, throw you the best stag do and not embarrass you too much in your speech!
  • The Speech – this is the part when you are under the spotlight. If nervous keep it short and sweet but remember to say how gorgeous the bridesmaids are, compliment your new wife, thank both set of parents oh and try to throw in a joke or quirky one liner.
  • The Stag Do – probably one of the highlights but our advice is NEVER have it the night before, plan ahead and give you and your friends a few weeks to recover.  It is popular to go abroad but don’t forget that Scotland is full of great outdoor spots and city nightlife!
  • The Honeymoon – now with your wife to be taking control of most of the wedding plans this is your chance to help out. Remember to choose something you BOTH would like and if you can keep it a surprise.

Now all that is left to for you is to get to the church on time and remember to say ‘I Do’! Congratulations and don’t forget to post any wedding pics on our Facebook Page and if you need help on how to wear your kilt then check out our You Tube Channel. Good Luck.

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Highlandwear Kilt Hire Kilts Wedding Kilts

How to choose a Scottish Tartan?

The Scots are known across the world as one of the friendliest nations. Our friends at home and abroad often ask us to help them find out what tartan kilt they should be wearing and want to find out more about their Scottish Heritage.

Each Scottish Clan or family name has its own tartan, Clan crest and Clan motto. In the past, official Clan tartans were governed by the Clan Chief with final approval being made in the Court of the Lord Lyon of Arms which governed Scottish heraldry.

Finding out what tartan and clan you belong to could not be simpler.  Houston Kiltmakers have 2 easy ways to help you find the right tartan for your Scottish kilt.

Houston’s Kilt Tartan Finder

  1. Just enter the name of the clan, tartan, or plaid you wish to view into Houston’s Tartan Finder to learn more about your Scottish roots.
  2. You can easily browse Houston’s range of tartans by surname. Just type in your surname and we will search our tartan database that includes EVERY Scottish tartan in the world to come up with a match.

Don’t worry if your surname does not come up with a specific clan or tartan. There are lots of tartans that anyone can wear, you don’t even have to be Scottish! Our owner Ken MacDonald also took inspiration from the Isle of Bute and designed an EXCLUSIVE Houston’s Bute Heather Collection that looks very modern and is perfect for a contemporary Scottish Wedding. Don’t forget you can post any kilt kilt pictures on our Facebook Page,  tag yourself and share the love of all things Scottish!

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Highlandwear Kilt Kilts

Cairngorm Mountains: Men in Kilts!

World Record Attempt Part Two….

If you are Scottish, a keen skier and are free on Saturday 5th March at 11am then you need to get yourself to the Cairngorms Mountains in Scotland!

Last year over 235 people pitched up on the slopes proudly donning their Scottish Kilts all together in a continuous line. It was quite the tartan spectacle. However they are upping the ante and have set the target at 400 skiers and snowboarders – good luck we hope the target is smashed.

Not only is it fun but organisers are raising money for Maggie’s Highland and The Local Schools Skiing Programme.  Make sure you post any pics on our Facebook Page, we would love to see you in action! Plus we are curious as to what the most popular Scottish tartan will be!!