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Thread: Poly-Wool?

  1. #1
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    Poly-Wool?

    Greetings!

    I was looking through the fabrics available on/through Scotweb, and came across a fabric labeled as 13 oz Poly-Wool (55%/45%). This is the first time I've seen tartan in that particular fabric mix, and I'm wondering how it compares to other common choices like pure wool of the same weight or to the slightly lighter P/V mix that we see much more frequently. The tartan in question is the darker Douglas tartan, and I am intrigued as it cost half as much as the same colour palette in 16 oz wool.
    I really like that darker tartan; I am considering learning to make my own kilt, but have never done so. A cheaper material seems like a good place to start (especially if I can get the colours I want!), but it also means that how the material handles compared to normal wool could force me into choosing another tartan (since I would want to be able to accurately judge my abilities before risking pricier tartans).
    Any information that the vendor or other experienced kiltmakers or wearers can provide would be much appreciated.

    Thanks in Advance,

    Mathew

  2. #2
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    Lightbulb

    Hi,

    actualy I canīt reply for the tartan, but as a cyclist, I have experiences with many materials for the jerseys. I have a real vintage pure wool jersey, which, historical fun style put apart, sucks Than I have a pure merino wool modern jersey (with vintage look), which works just fine on the body, as you would expect - many days without odour, during a crispy morning ride you are just fine in it, it feels worm, you donīt overheat during the day (except the days where the temperature is simply too high), it is really comfy for the skin, a pleasure I can say. The downside is that you have to wash it manualy and it is a pain to get rid of the stains. Also, you have to be careful after washing to hang it carefuly
    Than I got a modern jersey from the combination of merino on the inner side and poly on the exterior side and I have to say, this is it! Combines simply the best from both worlds - comfy, soft touch and insulation of merino against the skin, but easy care, machine washable, elasticity (you are not scared to put heavy thing in your pockets to not damage pockets and do not have a jersey twice as long as at the begining) and resistance against damage of polyester. Simply perfect!
    So, the combination of those two materials works, I suppose it could be a fine idea even for kilt..
    Hope you will find some advise from someone with a real experience with this particular tartan..

    Have fun

  3. The Following 2 Users say 'Aye' to Beaumont For This Useful Post:


  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beaumont View Post
    Than I got a modern jersey from the combination of merino on the inner side and poly on the exterior side and I have to say, this is it! Combines simply the best from both worlds - comfy, soft touch and insulation of merino against the skin, but easy care, machine washable, elasticity (you are not scared to put heavy thing in your pockets to not damage pockets and do not have a jersey twice as long as at the begining) and resistance against damage of polyester. Simply perfect!
    Beaumont - I would find this to be an unfit comparison to a blended fabric. The jersey you describe, being in two distinct layers (one of polyester, and the other of wool) would not be the same as a single piece of fabric woven from yarns combining both polyester and wool threads which are spun together.

    Mathew - I can't speak to the particular fabric, as my kilts are one or the other, and not a blend of both. But a 13oz blend is considered a medium-weight fabric. Consider how this will work in the temperatures you'll wear it in, and how well it may (or may not) work with the activities you'll be engaged in while wearing it. Consider too, whether you're thinking about a low-yardage (5 yard?) or full 8 yard kilt. The heavier the fabric, generally, the more swish you'll get, though the style of pleats may come in to play, as well... Deep knife pleats will generally swish more than shallow box pleats, and so on. Lastly, heavier wool generally holds a press a little better than a lighter weight wool. I don't know how the poly blend will influence how often the pleats might need to be pressed.

    As a rule, there is nothing wrong with kilts made from a medium weight fabric. But to me they just don't feel as solid as a kilt made from heavier fabric. If a full 8-yard 16oz kilt is too heavy, I'd opt for a 5 or 6 yard kilt, before going with a medium weight fabric. You'd shed more weight that way, and still retain all the qualities that make a great heavyweight kilt.
    KEN CORMACK
    Clan Buchanan
    U.S. Coast Guard, Retired
    Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, USA

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  6. #4
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    My purpose, more than anything else, would be in evaluating my enjoyment of the kiltmaking process, with the secondary goal of getting a usable garment out of it. Cost is also a big factor, so the choices seem to be between getting the tartan I want in Poly/Wool, or having to choose one that I would not necessarily have as a first choice in even lighter PV fabric, as they are very close in cost (the PV being marginally cheaper).

    What I wanted to try was for a 5 or 6 yard kilt with knife pleating. I was also interested in the lighter fabrics since summers here can get very humid, and on those 40+ Degrees Celsius days with humidity well over 90% even my 5 yard 16 oz wool kilt can get a little too warm for comfort. Still better than shorts or pants, mind you, buy I am willing to sacrifice some swish for the sake of keeping cool on those days. I'm also keeping in mind that folks here have nothing but good things to say about kilts in PV made by companies like USAKilts, so it seems that the lightweight PV does make good kilts.

    It really does come down to choice in tartan, all other things being equal. There are a few PV tartans that I like, but none that have a familial connection, which the Douglas has (my grandmother was a Douglas and quite proud of it). I am willing to forego this connection if the consensus is that PV will make for a better kilt than Poly/Wool, but if the opinions of the rabble here are that one is about as good as the other, I'll go with the fabric that offers the darker Douglas tartan that I really like.

    If all goes well and I find the process as enjoyable as I hope, I would then look into purchasing the more expensive 16oz wool tartans for both 5 and 8 yard kilts, and I'd also be keen on finding a source for even heavier weight materials so that I can also go kilted during the brutal winter months where I'd be looking more at -40 degrees. I'm not really convinced that even an 8 yard 16oz kilt would be sufficient to keep me warm on those days.

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